When Apple held its press event earlier this week, everything went more or less according to plan. The occasion was indeed mostly to unveil the iPhone 7 to the anxious world of Apple customers, though the company did spend some time on its newly upgraded Apple Watch, iOS 10, and a few other things.
There were two definite highlights for mobile gamers, albeit not both for iPhone users. The first was the reveal of Super Mario Run, an honest to goodness Nintendo mobile title (via its partnership with DeNA) featuring everyone's favorite plumber. Miyamoto even made an appearance to show it off.
The other was for Apple Watch owners, who will soon be able to play a very full-featured version of Pokemon GO. Not too many popular mobile games have found a comfortable home on Apple Watch, but this looks like it will be an exception.
Still, what most observers from this industry wanted to know is whether or not the coming of the iPhone 7 will change much for mobile gamers. And the answer is pretty short and sweet: probably not. Let's see what will effects the new phone might have on your gaming habits.
More power under the hood
Apple spent little time on gaming compared to other iPhone events, finally getting around to it toward the very end. the idea was to use Oz: Broken Kingdom to show off the phone's more powerful chip, mostly via the game's visuals.
And while that was fine, the truth is that the iPhone 6s has enough processing muscle to run most mobile games with little difficulty. Mobile gamers aren't likely to notice much of a difference by upgrading, at least in the near future.
Longer battery life
In contrast to the new chip, this could have an actual impact on your daily gaming habits. The iPhone 7 is said to give users about two more hours of battery life on average when compared to the iPhone 6s, while the iPhone 7 Plus manages about an hour more relative to the iPhone 6s Plus.
That's a real gain, especially if you regularly find yourself in lengthy mobile gaming sessions. As quality of life improvements go, this is right at the top of the list. It's an especially stark contrast to ...
No charging and playing with headphones simultaneously
The removal of the standard headphone jack -- something Apple was widely mocked for by chalking it up to "courage" -- means everything on iPhone 7 goes through the lightning port. New headphones will make use of that port, or old ones thanks to an included adapter.
One problem: You need that port for charging too, so if you do your gaming while wearing headphones or earbuds, you'll need that extra battery life.
Of course you could (and Apple would be more than happy if you did) buy the fancy new wireless AirPods or Beats headphones (also wireless), but that's going to cost you a three-digit sum.
While weighing all three of these factors could help influence your decision on whether or not to upgrade to iPhone 7, the truth is that mobile gaming won't be changed much by its arrival. Grab one if you must stay current or haven't upgraded for a while, but don't feel like iOS gaming will leave you behind if you stand pat. It definitely won't.