Testing iPhone 6 Accessories on iPhone 7 (and vice-versa)

Discussion in 'iPhone' started by Nekomichi, Sep 23, 2016.

  1. Nekomichi, Sep 23, 2016
    Last edited: Sep 23, 2016

    Nekomichi macrumors regular


    Sep 20, 2016
    I've seen a lot of people asking if accessories for the iPhone 6/6s would fit an iPhone 7 but haven't really seen any photos, so I decided to test for myself with some basic examples. The iPhone 7 has almost the same physical dimensions as the iPhone 6, so it should fit the same cases, right? Well, not quite.

    First up, screen protectors:
    I used a no-brand tempered glass screen protector from a £1 store that was designed for the iPhone 6/6s. Surprisingly, despite the larger speaker gap the protector fits just fine. The Home Button sits in its allotted hole and the speaker just about fits in the window. The ambient light sensor is also happily unobstructed. 3D Touch is unaffected by the glass, so last-generation screen protectors should work with the iPhone 7.

    Second test, cases:
    While the physical size of the iPhone 7 allows it to fit in iPhone 6 cases, sadly the new iSight camera has been moved and will be blocked by the camera window. Some cases with larger holes may just about work, however this gel case from Maplin didn't make it. All of the buttons and the mute switch are still fully accessible though.

    Both the camera lens and the new 4-LED flash lamp are blocked by the casing.

    Apple released a Smart Battery Case for both the iPhone 6/6s as well as the iPhone 7. While they look very similar, our third test did show some interesting results:
    First up, the iPhone 7 (running iOS 10.0.1) will charge happily in the iPhone 6s Smart Battery Case. Because the iPhone 7 is 0.1mm wider than the iPhone 6, it was a bit harder to push it down into the case. If physical protection and the added charge are what you're after then you can safely go with this case. However...

    This time round the camera is even more buried under the material, only slightly peeking through. Definitely a no-no if you plan on taking any pictures.

    Just for the sake of science, here's the iPhone 6 inside the iPhone 7 Smart Battery Case:
    Oddly enough, it doesn't charge and instead throws an unsupported accessory message. I'm not sure if this is because this particular unit is running iOS 9.3.3 and the case requires iOS 10 to work, or it just doesn't accept the higher capacity iPhone 7 case.

    The camera however, peeks through the huge gap just fine, albeit a little close to the top edge:

    I've also tried taking photos using the iPhone 7 with the various cases on:

    This is the negative control, taken without any case attached.

    With the translucent gel case, there's a haze over the entire picture, and the right hand side is darkened.

    And with the opaque last-generation Smart Battery Case, the view is unsurprisingly much more visibly obstructed. Additionally, it took me many more attempts to focus the camera whereas the previous two photos worked on the first attempt.

    So there you have it, physically speaking the iPhone 6/6s cases can fit on the iPhone 7. But should you use them? Well, if you don't plan on using the back-facing iSight camera then there isn't any problem. Given how most people use the camera on their phones, it doesn't look like you'll be able to use previous-generation cases. At least, not without some impromptu surgery done to the casing.
  2. blaugrana69 macrumors regular


    Sep 23, 2012
    Thanks for this, exactly what I've been waiting for in regards to the 7 in the 6s Smart Battery Case. Assumed it would be the camera lens that would be the issue but as would be using the battery case only infrequently, for example flights and longish train journeys, the fact that I couldn't take photos isn't really an issue.

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