Apple's basic iPhone 7 now features 32 GB of storage, which is a great upgrade from previous generations. However, the improvement comes with a toll.
According to benchmark testing, the 32 GB model sports significantly lower storage performance when pitted against the 128 GB model of the iPhone 7 and even to the 64 GB 6s Plus variant.
GSM Arena used the Basemark OS II tool and determined that the iPhone 7 Plus 32 GB stopped at around 800 points in the Storage department. Meanwhile, other iPhone models exceeded 1,400 points, with the 128 GB iPhone 7 getting as much as 1,721 points.
On a second screening that used the Pass Mark test, the 32 GB iPhone 7 Plus showed poor results in the Write portion of the benchmark, while its Reading speed matches that of the iPhone 6s Plus.
GSM Arena did not settle for digital benchmarks and went to see how the slower storage translates into real conditions.
The experts from the website devised a simple test: they captured a 10-minute 4K video with the iPhone, then proceeded to trim it in half with the proprietary Apple feature from the Photos app. They timed how long it took for the three handsets to finish saving the trimmed video as a new file.
The test was particularly useful as it mimics situations that most users will come across.
What is more, the test involves both reading the original hefty file (a sizeable 3.3 GB) and writing a relatively new video file.
The difference was surprisingly high, with the 128 GB model being three times as fast as the 32 GB iPhone 7 Plus.
When it comes to writing, the Pass Mark Storage test showed that the 128 GB variant is eight times quicker than the 32 GB.
GSM Arena warns users to take its test results with a grain of salt, as it was only applied to one iPhone 7. The website adds that Apple taps into various vendors for its storage chips, so some of the blame for the low speed could go to the chipmaker.
Despite these possibilities, keep in mind that storage and the writing/reading speed are key features of any smartphone and are a strong criteria in many customers' list.
Should you be proud owners of the 32 GB iPhone 7, we are looking forward to seeing your benchmark scores in the comments below. This should help settle the issue, at least until Apple sends out an official statement.
GMS Arena's test comes at a time when the honeymoon phase of the iPhone 7 seems to be nearing its end, as the device was shown to sport a lamer battery than its rivals and it tends to lose connectivity in certain situations.