Up until now, if you wanted to get your hands on a Galaxy S7 or S7 Edge, you had to commit to a carrier when you bought your phone--and deal with their bloatware. Samsung's now removing that restriction, with unlocked versions of its flagship phones now available.
Starting today, you can buy an unlocked Galaxy 7 for $670 from Samsung. The unlocked version of the Galaxy S7 Edge will cost $770. Those prices are around what you'd pay for a carrier-tied Galaxy — even a little bit less in some cases. Samsung says the unlocked phones will work on "most U.S. GSMA and CDMA networks," meaning you should be able to use the phone with a wide range of carriers.
Although these phones aren't pure Android devices, they won't be loaded down with carrier bloatware apps, so you should have more storage to yourself out of the box. Samsung also told us that you'll be able to delete many of the Samsung apps you might not expect.
In addition to Samsung, you'll also be able to pick up an unlocked S7 or S7 Edge from Amazon, Best Buy, Ebay, Sam’s Club and Target.com, among other retailers.
Unlocked phones have grown in popularity, as they offer users greater freedom to upgrade, travel and switch carriers. When it's time to resell your phone, unlocked phones also tend to fetch a higher price than models tied to carriers.
By offering unlocked versions of the S7 and S7 Edge, Samsung says it's responding to customer demand, and it's easy to see how this move could broaden the phone's appeal now that wireless carriers have had a chance to capture the first wave of S7 customers.