Apple’s iPhone 6 Plus is still livin’ large at half a year old
“If you’ve avoided previous iPhones because of their diminutive stature, take another look. The iPhone 6 Plus feels smoother than any other phone, sports a top-notch camera, and has the best app selection.”
- Industry-leading design, build quality
- Reachability feature makes size manageable
- Fantastic camera
- iOS 8 remains a fluid, beautiful OS
- Large battery
- 16GB storage on base model is not enough
- Large size is too big for some hands
- Specs aren’t much better than iPhone 5S
- No water resistance
I’ve never loved phablets. I still don’t. Before they started selling well (because all of you started buying them), I labeled phablets as unholdable failures, and still feel obligated to warn you all: Unless you have Shaq’s hands, a phablet is not the best-sized phone for you.
Given the choice between a perfectly designed 4.7-inch iPhone 6 and a massive 5.5-inch iPhone 6 Plus, the smartest among you will choose the standard 6. It’s a fantastic size for almost everyone.
But few of you are going to heed my size warnings, and why would you? So many phablets are sold each day that Apple felt compelled to throw out its own beliefs on phone usability and release the over-endowed iPhone 6 Plus.
Updated on 3-24-2015 by Malarie Gokey: Added in more impressions on Apple Pay, the camera, and battery life, after using the iPhone 6 Plus for several months.
Beautiful design (wish it were waterproof)
Year in and year out, the iPhone is always the best-looking, best-built phone available. Nothing has changed with the iPhone 6 or 6 Plus. Aside from the HTC One M8, nothing out there comes close to its design quality.
- An insanely thin 7.1mm body (the thinness should help if you use a case)
- A brushed-aluminum frame (silver, black, or champagne “gold” available)
- Less plastic than last year around the top and bottom of the back (there’s just a thin strip for the antenna)
- Roomier volume buttons
- A more comfortable power button on the side instead of the top
LG G3, Galaxy S5, and Xperia Z2/Z3. Treat the iPhone like it’s Gizmo from Gremlins: Keep it away from water at all costs.
Still, when all is said and done, the pros outweigh the cons. This is a comfortable, beautiful iPhone that leads the market. Apple hasn’t lost a step.
Apple’s Reachability makes 6 Plus more manageable
Despite its size, one small feature makes the 6 Plus much easier to use: Reachability.
Normally, a big phone forces you to strrrretch your thumb between a Home button at the bottom of the screen, a notification tray way on the top of the screen, app back buttons in the upper left corner of the screen, and power/volume keys high up on the sides. The smaller a phone is, the easier it is for you to hit all these keys with one hand; the larger it gets, the more you have to adjust your grip or use two hands. This leads to discomfort and dropping.
Apple’s Reachability feature is the best way I’ve seen a phone maker deal with size.
Reachability is the easiest, best way I’ve seen a phone maker deal with this common phablet problem. Double tap (not a press, just a touch tap) on the Home button and the entire top of the screen pulls itself halfway down. This simple maneuver lets you easily access the top three rows of app icons, yank down the Notification center, and reach the top-left navigation in apps. There are also options to increase text and icon size.
Even with Reachability, it’s still somewhat cumbersome to have to double tap every time you want a screen to come down to meet your thumb, but at least the iPhone gives an option if you need to do some things with one hand. Kudos to Apple for thinking that through better than any Android phone maker so far (or Google).
After using the phone for a few months, I found that I very rarely use reachability, but it’s nice to know it’s there if I need it. If I want to use the 6 Plus one-handed, I can manage it, by nestling the phone against my palm. Still, more often than not, I go with the two-handed approach, which begins to feel natural after you’ve adjusted to the phablet life.
iOS 8 is a good, small step forward
For a more complete look at iOS 8, you should read our full review. Aside from Reachability and some improvements to iCloud — Family Sharing and iCloud Drive both rock — there’s little new in the iPhone 6 Plus. Apple’s maligned Podcasts app is now included at installation and there are three new apps: Tips, Watch, and Health.
Tips is literally just a guide to new features in iOS 8. Despite being an app most people will use once, you can’t remove it. The same goes for the Apple Watch app.
Health is the most poorly designed app I’ve ever seen from Apple. In its current state, it is completely unusable by anyone outside of engineers and Apple’s elite. I’m not sure who approved this mess, but it’s shameful. I’ve been reviewing apps since 2006, and I’ve used better health and fitness apps on the original Motorola Razr phone than Apple’s Health app.
Aside from Health, iOS 8 looks about identical to iOS 7, and that’s great. iOS remains the most consistent, easy-to-use operating system available. You can even do a few new things, like install your own custom keyboard — hello, SwiftKey.
Apple Pay may be derivative and niche, but you have to hand it to Apple, its mobile payment system is downright cool. I’ve used it a number of times at Whole Foods, Panera Bread, and a few pharmacies. Apple Pay really does work seamlessly, and assuming the company uses its big reputation to bring NFC technology to every single cash register in the United States of America and beyond, it could be a game changer.
Good specs, but storage comes at a cost
First, a rant. When is Apple going to upgrade the iPhone’s memory? The default 750 iPhone 6 Plus has only 16GB — the same as the low-end iPhone 3GS in 2010. There’s no reason Apple couldn’t give users at least 32GB of space in the cheapest iPhone 6 models except greed.
If you pay 100 more, you can get a 64GB iPhone, and 100 more will nab you 128GB. With apps and photos taking up much more space than even a year or two ago and no MicroSD support, we cannot recommend that you purchase a 16GB iPhone. Pay 100 more and buy a 64GB option.
iPhone 6 Plus is likely the best smartphone camera on the market.
Outside of storage, the iPhone 6 Plus has a 5.5-inch 1,920 x 1,080 pixel LCD screen, 1.4GHz dual-core 64-bit Apple A8 processor (based on the ARM v8), a special Apple M8 motion processor that can now detect movement precisely enough to know when you’re going up stairs, 1GB of RAM, ion-strengthened glass that may or may not be better than Gorilla Glass 3, an 8-megapixel rear camera, a 1.2-megapixel front camera, and an NFC chip, which will be used with Apple’s upcoming phone-payment system.
The 6 Plus appears to be roughly on par with the iPhone 6 and a small step up in power from the iPhone 5S. The phone gets noticeably warm when you play games or do a lot of downloading.
We performed a 3DMark Ice Storm Unlimited test on the iPhone 6 Plus and it scored about an 18,000, which is on par with the Galaxy S5. However, we should note that it didn’t appear to yet run at full 1080p resolution. The Geekbench processor benchmark gave the phone a slightly higher score than the iPhone 5S, with a 2,860 multi-core score, compared to a 2,515 for the 5S.
The specs of the iPhone 6 Plus are good, but no matter which way you slice it, Apple has not focused on raw processing power this year (or memory). The insides of the iPhone 6 Plus are a lot like the 5S.
Apple certainly gave the camera a boost on the iPhone 6 Plus. It takes consistently great shots in most lighting conditions. Often, a simple tap to change the FOCUS in a picture will bring out the best in an image. When it comes to making cameras that are easy to use and take great photos, Apple is king.
I’ve even used it as my primary camera at press events. than once, I’ve used it to shoot hands-on videos of other devices and app demos. It truly is a wonder. I haven’t had much use for Timelapse videos, except when I was at the NYC marathon, but it was pretty awesome to use it then.
Typically, the iPhone 6 Plus’ rear camera performs a little better in darker situations than older iPhones. The 6 Plus also brings out slightly more detail in certain situations (like the blue in the sky in a distant window) than the 5S.
One of the biggest problems for iPhone users is battery life — It was at an all time low with the 5S, and most Android devices now approach two-day life. The iPhone 6 is almost as bad as the iPhone 5S at keeping a charge. However, the iPhone 6 Plus manages to last a lot longer.
Apple claims that the 2,915mAh battery in the 6 Plus will get up to 24 hours of talk time on 3G, but that’s not a terribly useful metric. I’m one of those obsessive people who charges their phone before it drops below 50 percent, so I rarely see my phone hit empty. However, after a full day at work, the battery is usually lingering around 70 percent, which is pretty incredible for an iPhone
On days when there’s a press event or two, that number drops to around 55 percent. Honestly, the only time I’ve ever worried about this phone dying dramatically in my hands was at the last two tradeshows. After using my phone almost nonstop to check calendar events, edit posts, text colleagues, email exhibitors, take photos, and a few videos between the hours of 7 a.m. to 10 p.m., the iPhone 6 Plus was at 17 percent battery. Granted, I did charge it once for about 5 to 15 minutes between events, but that’s still decent.
Now, these numbers won’t be true for all of you. Some networks drain battery more than others, and some people stream boatloads of videos on their phones, or play graphics-intensive games. Battery life on the iPhone 6 Plus may not be as great for everyone, but it still beats the hell out of what you got from your old iPhone.
Of Apple’s two new models, we recommend the iPhone 6 over the iPhone 6 Plus, but compared to other (oversized) phablets, this is a fantastic offering. It doesn’t have a stylus like the Galaxy Note 4, but Apple’s operating system is still smoother and more user-friendly than Google’s Android OS, which runs the Note. The easy Reachability features of the phone also make this phablet easier to handle. The only thing that could improve usability more would be a rear-mounted Home button, like LG has on its flagship G3 phone.
If you like big phones or have avoided previous iPhones because of their diminutive stature, take a fresh look at Apple. Though we’re unhappy about the 16GB of storage space in the low-end model (please, pay more to get 64GB), the iPhone 6 Plus feels smoother than any other phone, sports a top-notch camera, and has the best app selection.
- Industry-leading design, build quality
- Reachability feature makes size manageable
- Fantastic camera
- iOS 8 remains a fluid, beautiful OS
- Large battery
- 16GB storage on base model is not enough
- Large size is too big for some hands
- Specs aren’t much better than iPhone 5S
- No water resistance
Apple iPhone 6s Plus review
Is the 6s Plus any more than just a scaled up 6s? Well this time round it might just be.
When Apple’s first phablet dropped last year, it basically turned out to be a big iPhone.
Although Samsung’s Note series had shown you could do a lot of things differently with an ample display, the iPhone 6 Plus simply offered you more of the same. battery life, more pixels in its 5.5-inch screen and more aluminium to hold on to. It was fine, but a little boring – like a bumper-sized pack of lightly salted crisps.
One year on, you might be wondering whether the iPhone 6s Plus has found its own identity. The advent of 3D Touch and 4K video seem to offer it a coming-of-age moment. One that arrives without the need to spend Saturday in high school detention or head to the woods in search of a dead body.
Then again, with a near-identical design to its predecessor and no stylus in sight, is the iPhone 6s Plus just the 6s after a growth spurt? Allow us to size it up for you.
A touch of the future
‘In a world where the Apple Pencil exists and costs US99 (£64), why doesn’t the 6s Plus offer stylus functionality?’ you might ask in exceptionally geeky fashion.
Well, 3D Touch is the answer and it’s a surprisingly great response for Apple to have in its back 3D Touch offers a lot of the same functionality you’d get with the Galaxy Note 5‘s stylus. You’ll lose a little precision, but that doesn’t really matter given that you’re using the feature as a means of navigation – not to turn your phone into an Etch A Sketch.
Also, you can now press and hold the 6s Plus’ keyboard to turn it into a trackpad so you can edit your typing exactly. The same feature exists on the 6s, it just makes more sense on a bigger screen.
Similarly to when you’re first using a Galaxy Note’s stylus, 3D Touch will take some getting used to. We kept tapping and holding on the screen at first, instead of pressing and holding, causing the apps to shiver in fear of deletion. But once you get the hang of things, it’s as if you’ve never lived a day without the feature.
What’s needed now is for more third party app developers to jump on the 3D Touch bandwagon. It looks as though big names such as Instagram and Dropbox have 3D Touch integration on the way, but until then this feature is restricted to first-party apps such as Safari and Mail.
Is that an iPhone 6s Plus in your …
Although the iPhone 6s Plus’ 5.5-inch screen isn’t the biggest you’ll find on a phablet, it does mean you’ll need large hands to comfortably use it. As was the case with its predecessor, the 6s Plus has a 1920×1080 resolution display. Unlike the iPhone 6s, this means it can screen Full HD video footage, which is great news for anyone who watches a lot of Netflix or YouTube on the go.
With 401ppi clarity, the 6s Plus is still quite a way behind the other flagship phones when it comes to dazzling your eyes with pin-sharp detail. The LG G4 and Samsung Galaxy Note 5 are currently in the front of the pack with 538ppi and 518ppi respectively, while the 4K Sony Xperia Z5 Premium is about to knock it out of the pixel park at 806 ppi.
Unless you’ve got laser sharp vision and put the iPhone 6s Plus next to its Android competition, you shouldn’t notice the difference on a day-to-day basis. Especially since Apple excels at getting the best from its displays. The 6s Plus offers rich, natural colours compared to the oversaturated tones you’ll get from many an Android alternative.
cushion for the 3D Touchin’
Aside from offering a screen that’s almost an inch bigger than the 6s, the 6s Plus is 49g heavier. What’s the cause of this added plump? 3D Touch, of course.
The thicker glass this pressure-sensitive tech requires also means the 6s Plus now weighs 192g in total. Put both the 6s and 6s Plus in your hands like a human scale and you’ll certainly notice the difference. If anything this phablet’s added heft is reassuring, you don’t feel like you could accidentally toss it across your living room. In contrast, handling the 6s is a more precarious affair.
Aside from its new-fangled glass, the 6s Plus’ construction has also been strengthened with 7000 series aluminium. The same material you’ll find in the Apple Watch and a jumbo jet airliner. Why? So ‘Bendgate’ doesn’t happen again for anyone who carries their iPhone around in their back
We tried checking if this were the case, but the 6s Plus proved too big to squeeze into our jeans. Petite folk of the world, consider yourselves warned.
Built to last
As with the iPhone 6s, the 6s Plus’s battery capacity has been reduced to accommodate its new 3D Touch-enabled display. Unlike with the 6s Plus’ smaller cousin, this shouldn’t offer as much cause for concern.
To get technical for a moment, the 6s Plus is said to have a 2750 mAh battery. This means it’s about 5% smaller than the 6 Plus’ 2,915mAh battery, but still significantly bigger than the 6s’ 1715 mAh battery. While some of this extra charge will be used to power the 6s Plus’ bigger screen, Apple’s phablet definitely offers greater stamina than its standard iPhone.
Обзор Apple iPhone 6 Plus
After hammering the 6S Plus for a good eight hours with power-sapping 4K videos and Live Photos, we were left with a fifth of its battery life left. To tide us through the commute home, we simply activated iOS 9’s new Low Power Mode that instinctively shuts down or decreases the thirstiest features in your phone.
iPhone 6 против iPhone 6 Plus
Stuff like push emails and background app refreshes are culled to stretch out what’s left of your battery life, and you’ll barely notice. It’s no biggie at all. If you’re torn between the two new iPhones, battery life might be just the factor to sway you.
Unlike the Galaxy Note 5, the 6s Plus doesn’t come with fast charging tech. This means you’ll have to remember to charge it overnight, because a 10 minute lift before dashing out the door won’t cut it for this slow-sipping battery. Comparatively speaking, the Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge (3000mAh) and Note 5 (3,020mAh) also offer more power to see you through a day’s use and that little bit extra.
That junk in its trunk
The iPhone 6s Plus comes with Apple’s new A9 processor and is rumoured to feature 2GB RAM too. That would be double that of its predecessor, but Apple is coy to confirm anything and we’re loathe to rip open this phone’s casing to find out.
One thing we can tell you without whipping out our ratchet and hammer is that the 6s Plus is ever so slightly slower than the plain old iPhone 6s. It received a maximum score of 4181 for multicore performance in our Geekbench 3 testing, compared to the iPhone 6s’ 4410 rating. When you consider the 6s Plus has more screen to work with, this isn’t all that surprising.
What it does mean though, is that the 6s Plus is far from a speed king. Although its A9 chip makes it faster than the LG G4 (3502), It’s something of a slouch compared to the HTC One M9 (4200), Snapdragon 810-powered OnePlus 2 (4460) and the Samsung Galaxy S6‘s Exynos 7420 CPU (5200).
How this translates to real life is that you’ll be able to play Crossy Road, answer an email, and go back to playing your game without experiencing non-responsive frustration. Swiping, tapping and now 3D Touching our way through the 6s Plus was stutter-free. This phablet was as eager as the rest of its family in responding to our touch, even though we’ve crammed it full with a lot of photos and videos already (11,765 in total to be exact).
We’re a little trigger happy, okay?
When it comes to handling a graphics intensive game such as Riptide GP2, the A9 chip keeps good pace with what’s asked of it. Not once did we experience any stutter that might get in the way of our hydro jet racing career. And that large screen provided for incredibly immersive gameplay, buoyed by slick smooth visual rendering.
Tap that Touch ID
As with the iPhone 6s, Touch ID on this monster phone is blazingly fast. And that’s a very good thing given its sometimes unwieldy size. You don’t want to drop your brand new dink-free iPhone 6s Plus while attempting to type in your passcode now, do you?
Even if your hands are too dry or too clammy, the sensitivity on the fingerprint sensor has been improved. The Touch ID of old would have prompted us to try again countless times before we finally gave up and entered our passcode manually.
This Touch ID waved us through in the time we took to press the Home button to wake the phone. Who even needs passcodes anymore?
OIS is a killer camera feature
Following suit with the 6s, the iPhone 6s Plus’ camera has finally been upgraded to offer 12-megapixels instead of the paltry 8 you may have been used to. It also features a pleasingly wide ƒ/2.2 aperture that means your photos look more intricate Hieronymus Bosch than smudgy Van Gogh.
Using the 6s Plus’ camera is like having a sharpening filter applied to all your photos. Your eyes will lap up all that glorious detail, which is only made better by the generous screen.
Nevertheless, both the LG G4 and Galaxy S6 are still better-specced for photos. The G4 has a 16MP sensor with a wider f/1.8 lens for capturing more light in dim conditions, while the Galaxy S6 has a 16MP sensor with a f/1.9 aperture. Both phones also feature optical image stabilisation (OIS).
As with screen quality and battery life, photography is an area where the iPhone 6s Plus fares much better than the iPhone 6s and this is largely thanks to OIS. By compensating for camera shake, this feature ensures your photos and videos won’t look like they’ve been shot by someone walking on a trampoline of Jell-o.
This tech compensates for some motion blur, keeping lines sharp, but don’t expect it to save you in really tricky weather conditions. When shooting video on San Francisco’s waterfront, the wind was so strong that our phone kept shaking and the footage looked pretty shonky. OIS is great, but you’ll still need a pair of steady hands to create National Geographic-worthy footage.
The iPhone 6s Plus also introduces Apple’s neat new Live Photos feature, which inserts 1.5 seconds of footage before and after your still snap. You’ll want to hold your phone in place before and after hitting that trigger, otherwise it will just be a hot mess of movement.
For those who truly love themselves, Live Photos also works on the FaceTime camera and you can use these selfies as your wallpaper. With a press and hold, they’ll start to move before your eyes. For the provided Live Wallpapers. the harder you press on them, the quicker they unfurl on your screen. Take your finger off and it rewinds itself. It’s almost like poking your finger into a time warp.
Sure, it’s nothing groundbreaking but it’s one of the many small details on the 6s Plus that will raise a smile. We found ourselves demonstrating it to people to explain what Live Photos are about, and also tapping it whenever we were bored. Just bear in mind that Live Photos take up twice the space of a normal photo so proceed with caution.
4K video killed the HD star
You still really need loads of natural light to make 4K really pop. Footage we shot in the dusky light of the shady Muir Woods was a little grainier than we’d have liked, but where sunlight is abundant, 4K sparkled like Edward Cullen. Literally. Just check out our video of Sausalito’s waterfront and look at that light glinting off the water.
From gossamer spider web threads to bubbles, it did a brilliant job of capturing what’s barely there. It’s like going back to previously perfect eyesight before it was ruined by too much computer use. 4K requires minimal effort and turns out maximum results so we won’t be surprised if it becomes your default video recording resolution.
We don’t think we can go back to to 1080p, let alone 720p, which is bad news for our storage. 4K will munch right through your precious GB – a minute of 4K averages 375MB – so don’t go too crazy. Otherwise you’ll find yourself having to sacrifice apps to make space for an extremely detailed video of a snail gliding across the picnic table.
This phablet doesn’t come cheap, as with all Apple products. The 16GB costs £619, the 64GB £699, and the 128GB – a princely £789. The 32GB Galaxy Note 5 costs around the price of the 16GB iPhone 6s Plus in the US while the 32GB version of the LG G4 rings in at £525 for the more expensive leather-backed version if you need a little perspective.
Either way, the 6s Plus is an expensive piece of kit which makes its 16GB entry-level storage even more disappointing. It’s not hard to figure out why Apple has skimped on offering a 32GB model as standard, a 16GB device is cheaper to make and will push more people towards a 64GB 6s Plus. Still, none of those benefits apply to you: the consumer. Given Apple’s obsession with customer satisfaction scores, its intransigence on storage is totally perplexing.
You’ll soon fill up 16GB on a 6s Plus with music, apps, photos and video. It just doesn’t offer enough space for the modern day smartphone user. If you don’t mind coughing up the cash, we’d recommend that you steer clear of the entry-level 6s Plus and get a 64GB or 128GB handset that can make the most of its features.
iPhone 6s Plus verdict
No matter what people say, size matters. And because of its sheer screen size, the iPhone 6s Plus does tremendously well at showcasing some of Apple’s new hardware features. It’s particularly good for 3D Touch, and has a great screen for showing off those 12Mp photos and 4K video you can now shoot. Perhaps best of all, it enough battery life to see you through a day and then the morning afterwards.
Is the 6s Plus the better iPhone of the two? Only if your hands can handle its generous curves. If not, you’ll find it cumbersome to operate quickly which defeats the purpose of having those fab photo features. Also, the iPhone 6s is the faster phone by a clear margin.
When it comes to the league of giants, the iPhone 6s Plus is actually one of the smaller phablets around. In terms of screen quality, storage, battery life and sheer power it doesn’t offer as much as the Samsung Galaxy Edge, Note 5 and many other flagship handsets.
Smart with a good eye for camera work, the iPhone 6s Plus still puts the ‘fab’ in phablet. Only just though.
You can now check out our iPhone 7 Plus review.
iPhone 6 Review: It May Be Old, But It’s Still A Fine Phone
The iPhone 6 generation may be more than five years old, but even as it has aged, there are a few reasons it’s still a great phone. At the time of writing, the newest iPhone available is the iPhone 12. That puts the iPhone 6 at several generations old, but it also means you can purchase the older models much cheaper than once before.
The device is available in the 100 range on Amazon compared to the iPhone 12 that costs around 799.
Whether you’re thinking about buying a low-cost iPhone, you really miss your headphone jack, or you’re just curious what the iPhone 6 looked and felt like the day it was released, we’ll cover that for you in this article.
The iPhone 6 – Good Old Days
You can’t go wrong with an iPhone, and at such a low price compared to newer models, the iPhone 6 is a safe bet.
iPhone 6 and iPhone 6s smartphones are 4.7 inches while the iPhone 6 Plus and iPhone 6s Plus are 5.4 inches. The iPhone 11 Pro is 8.5 inches and Pro Max is 6.5 inches for comparison.
The iPhone 6 Review
After years of mocking rivals for producing larger screens, and sticking to its.sized principles, the iPhone 6 release was a shock. It introduced not one larger-screened model, but two: the iPhone 6 with a 4.7-inch screen and the iPhone 6 Plus with a 5.5-inch display.
Some say the manufacturer caved under pressure to produce the larger phone, but years later, we see this was a Smart move on the company’s part.
Size and design
The iPhone 6, the smaller of the two phones, was the more popular option because it didn’t take iPhone 4 5 users too far in size. Previous models of the iPhone were incredibly boxy with straight edges and harsh sides. The iPhone 6 was Apple’s first attempt at a smoother more sleek design.
The sheer thinness of the handset makes it pretty comfortable to hold, too. It measures only 7.1mm from front to back, 0.5mm. In comparison to newer phones on the market today, it is much slimmer and easier to hold than other iPhones.
As far as Apple’s flagship phones go, the iPhone 6 was the first in the line to have the power button on the side rather than the top. Essentially, this just made it much easier to use the phone with only one hand which was a big deal in 2014.
Newer iPhones today have a Sleep/Wake button in place of a power button. This means that users need to hold the volume plus side button to power down their phone. If you’re using an iPhone 6 or even 6s, you can completely power down the phone by holding only one button.
Another big change between the iPhone 6 and today’s more current models is how you use the home button and Siri. Although the newer iPhone SE still has the home button, other models do not. To activate Siri on the iPhone 6 or 6 Plus, all you need to do is hold the home button. Newer models lacking this functionality require users to hold the side button.
If we’re looking back at the release date, the iPhone 6 was also the first iPhone with a protruding camera. After years we’ve become used to the back camera lens preventing the phone from laying flat, but in 2014 users were concerned about possible damage to the lens or even the inability to slide it smoothly into their s. Fortunately, this wasn’t such a big issue that Apple couldn’t continue on with the larger cameras on the back.
At the time of release, the sleek industrial design was accompanied by a swathe of upgrades to the hardware inside, but it’s the screen that made the most significant impact. With the increase in size, Apple boosted the iPhone 6’s resolution to 750 x 1,344, giving a pixel density of 327ppi (a mere fraction higher than the iPhone 5s’ 326ppi), and it looks pin-sharp.
Brightness, contrast, and color accuracy were also all exemplary for the time, with the iPhone reaching a maximum brightness of 585cd/m2, gaining an eye-popping 1,423:1 contrast ratio, a highly impressive color accuracy rating with a Delta E of 1.74, and sRGB coverage of 95%. That contrast ratio is particularly remarkable, and a significant improvement on the 5s’ 972:1, lending onscreen images a little more depth and dynamism.
To put it in modern terms, the iPhone 12 screen resolution is much higher at 2532 by 1170 pixels at 460 PPI. This is a vast difference between the iPhone 6 and the iPhone 11. So, as miraculous as this screen was in 2014, it looks incredibly dull by today’s standards.
The iPhone 6, along with its big brother, sports a dual-core A8 CPU, with 1GB of RAM, upgraded graphics, and an M8 motion coprocessor (that’s the low-power chip designed to save energy by monitoring the phone’s sensors). There are models with 16GB, 64GB, and 128GB of storage (but, oddly, no 32GB model). Apple first introduced the barometer to the phone’s line-up of sensors for more accurate reporting of relative altitude and atmospheric pressure.
Anyone who is using an iPhone 6 today will notice a vast difference from when it was first released. Reviewers raved over the seamless experience and faster processor, but with today’s updates slowing down the phone’s RAM, you may notice some lags or glitches.
What the Original Reviewer Had to Say
Moving on to the slightly more demanding Peacekeeper benchmark, I saw a score of 2,533, which was way in front of every other smartphone we’ve tested. It’s the same story in Geekbench 3, with a single-core score of 1,631 that wipes the floor with everything else, and a multi-core score that’s only marginally beaten by the quad-core Qualcomm hardware in the Samsung Galaxy S5.
Given that the iPhone 6 has half the number of cores as the Samsung, it’s still a seriously impressive showing. And as for the GFXBench T-Rex HD gaming test, there’s simply no competition: the only phone capable of beating the iPhone 6’s 51fps is the iPhone 6 Plus, which averaged a silky smooth 53fps despite its higher-resolution Full HD screen.
Perhaps more importantly, the battery life was also excellent at the time of release. The more efficient 20nm CPU certainly helped: playing a 720p video with flight mode on and the screen set to a brightness of 120cd/m2, the battery depleted at 7.5% per hour, while streaming audio continuously from our SoundCloud account over 3G with the screen off reduced capacity at 1.7% per hour.
With that being said, today’s models hold a battery life for much longer time periods while running much more complex processes and programs. Today, the iPhone 6 battery life isn’t expected to run nearly as long as it once did. Why? For starters, the phone no longer runs on a slower 3G speed, in most places you’ll get 4G LTE if not 5G. Next, the newer software updates (including those of applications) will pull much more battery life than they once did.
The good news? You can still get the Apple replaced at an Apple Store. Pricing may vary and you will be paying out-of- for it, but it’s a great little phone with an updated battery.
As with most smartphones, this does depend on your usage, and one thing that hits battery life hard is gaming. In the GFXBench battery test, which loops a 3D OpenGL animation for around half an hour and estimates total runtime, the iPhone 6 achieved a total runtime of 2hrs 29mins. That’s an improvement over the iPhone 5s’ 1hr 52mins (impressive given how many more frames the phone is rendering). However, it still indicates that graphics-heavy gaming will lead to a significantly shorter period between charging sessions.
Apple added NFC (Near Field Communication) to the iPhone 6, which is used solely for the Apple Pay touch credit-card payment system – it isn’t used for Bluetooth pairing. It also uses the phone’s Touch ID fingerprint reader in conjunction with your credit card details to provide increased security.
The iPhone 6 will give you get an 8-megapixel 1/3in backside-illuminated CMOS sensor with 1.5-micron photo sites, and an aperture of f/2.2 – the same as the 5s. Apple’s True Tone flash accompanies it so that indoor shots don’t look washed out and ghostly.
The difference is that the camera now sports several phase-detect autofocus pixels on the sensor’s surface, which are similar to the Galaxy S5 high-end SLR cameras, enabling much faster autofocus.
In practice, what this means is that the iPhone 6 will almost instantly transition from focusing on a subject that’s far away to one that’s close. The iPhone 5s would take a second or so. This feature isn’t a dramatic upgrade, but it makes a big difference with video: the highly effective digital stabilization and super-quick focusing combine to produce stunning Full HD video, with much less FOCUS hunting.
The other major upgrade at the time was the optical image stabilization – available on the iPhone 6’s big brother, the iPhone 6 Plus. Even there, Apple is restricting its use to low-light conditions and stills. It isn’t used in video mode, presumably to save battery life.
Its digital image stabilization remains excellent and produces smooth, shake-free videos. The only difference is that the iPhone 6’s improved processing engine tends to apply less aggressive noise-reduction settings, leading to slightly grainier but more detailed photos in low light.
The front-facing camera, or “selfie” camera as we’re encouraged to label it these days, also had a small improvement. Although resolution remains the same at 1.2 megapixels, the aperture is a wide f/2.2, which lets in “81% more light,” and there’s also a burst mode to help capture your best side.
It produces more detailed, cleaner self-portraits in low light, but in brighter conditions, you’ll struggle to tell the difference between the iPhone 6 and the 5s.
To round things off, Apple added a handful of features to the camera front-end. Top of the list is a timelapse video feature, which produces top-quality sped-up footage, and there’s also an additional Slo-mo mode, which captures video at 240fps – twice the frame rate of the iPhone 5s. Keep in mind though, that newer models feature higher mega-pixel cameras with better software and multiple lenses.
What About the Software?
The latest edition of iPhone software is iOS 14. Unfortunately, this older model simply isn’t compatible with it. The latest software you can get on the iPhone 6 or iPhone 6 Plus is iOS 12.4.9.
Fortunately, you’ll still have access to many modern features of the software. For example, iOS does include ScreenTime, AR, and of course, Siri. Just beware, as the phone ages, some apps may not be compatible with iOS 12.
iPhone 6: Verdict
The iPhone 6 is a pleasure to use. It’s smaller than many phones offered today, still has a headphone jack and a home button, and seems to work fairly well for light users.
Unfortunately, this model will likely soon become phased out. Not just the older hardware and newer software compatibility issues, this phone will begin to struggle with network connectivity as 5G becomes more prominent. As seen with the older 3G network which was eventually phased out, the iPhone 6 could become nothing more than a Wi-Fi-only iPod.
Fortunately, at the time of writing, Apple still offers repair on this model of phone. With a new battery, perhaps a new screen, and a new motherboard, you’re likely to see an improvement in productivity and usability.
If you’re in the market for a low-cost iPhone that still has a home button, consider the iPhone SE. Released in 2020, this model contains updated hardware, better software, and all at a low price.
The Differences Between the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus
Sam Costello has been writing about tech since 2000. His writing has appeared in publications such as CNN.com, PC World, InfoWord, and many others.
It’s easy to see how the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus are different: The iPhone 6 Plus has a larger screen and is bigger overall. Beyond the physical, though, the differences between the two models are somewhat subtle.
It’s important to understand those differences if you plan to buy one of these models. This article explains five key things that make the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus different. Use this information to make an informed iPhone buying decision.
This article covers how the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus are different. Want to know what makes the iPhone 6 series different from its successor, the iPhone 6S? Read 6 Key Ways the iPhone 6 iPhone 6S Are Different.
iPhone 6 vs iPhone 6 Plus: Screen Size and Resolution
The most apparent difference between the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus is screen size. The iPhone 6 sports a 4.7-inch screen, which is a nice improvement over the 4-inch screen on the iPhone 5S and 5C.
The iPhone 6 Plus upgrades the display even more. The 6 Plus has a 5.5-inch screen. That makes it a “phablet” (a combination phone and tablet) and a close competitor to the iPad mini, which has a 7-inch screen. The 6 Plus has a different screen resolution: 1920 x 1080 pixels versus 1334 x 750 pixels on the iPhone 6.
Users looking for screen size and portability with a good feel in hand will prefer the iPhone 6. Those seeking the largest possible display will enjoy the 6 Plus.
Learn how to make onscreen icons bigger and reach icons on these large screens in How to Use Reachability and Display Zoom on iPhone.
iPhone 6 vs iPhone 6 Plus: Battery Life
Because of its larger screen, the iPhone 6 Plus drains the battery faster. Its larger battery offers much a longer battery life than the battery in the iPhone 6, based on information supplied by Apple. Here’s what to expect:
Because of its larger screen and improved battery, the iPhone 6 Plus is more expensive than its sibling.
Both models offer the same storage options—16 GB, 64 GB, and 128 GB—but expect to spend about 100 more for the iPhone 6 Plus than the iPhone 6. While that’s not a tremendous price difference, it matters if you’re very budget-conscious when making your buying decision.
iPhone 6 vs iPhone 6 Plus: Size and Weight
Because of the differences in screen size, battery capacity, and some internal components, weight is a critical difference between the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus. The iPhone 6 weighs 4.55 ounces, just 0.6 ounces more than its predecessor, the iPhone 5S. On the other hand, the 6 Plus tips the scales at 6.07 ounces.
The physical dimensions of the phones are different, too. The iPhone 6 is 5.44 inches tall by 2.64 inches wide by 0.27 inches thick. The 6 Plus is 6.22 by 3.06 by 0.28 inches.
While those differences are not huge, pay attention to these details if keeping your s or purse as light as possible is important to you.
iPhone 6 vs iPhone 6 Plus: Camera: Image Stabilization
Based on their specs, the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus cameras appear to be identical. The back cameras take 8-megapixel images and 1080p HD video, while the front cameras capture video at 720p HD and photos at 1.2 megapixels. Both offer the same slo-mo features.
However, one element of the cameras makes a big difference in photo quality: image stabilization.
There are two kinds of image stabilization: hardware and software. In software image stabilization, a program automatically tweaks photos to improve their look. Both phones have this.
Hardware image stabilization uses the phone’s gyroscope and M8 motion co-processor to cancel out movement. It’s even better. The iPhone 6 Plus has hardware stabilization, but the regular iPhone 6 doesn’t. So, if taking the best possible photos is important to you, choose the 6 Plus.
|1134 x 750||1920 x 1080|
|1.2 megapixel photos720p video||1.2 megapixel photos720p video|
|8 megapixel photos1080p videosoftware image stabilization||8 megapixel photos1080p videohardware image stabilization|
|talk: 14 hoursaudio: 50 hoursvideo: 11 hoursinternet: 11 hours||talk: 24 hoursaudio: 80 hoursvideo: 14 hoursinternet: 12 hours|
|5.44 x2.64 x0.27||6.22 x3.06 x0.28|
|4.55 oz||6.07 oz|
|US649 and up||749 and up|
Apple has discontinued the iPhone 6 series in favor of newer models.
The iPhone 6 Plus is now considered obsolete by Apple
Apple has just updated its list of so-called “vintage” devices. This includes devices that were last marketed more than 5 years ago and less than 7 years ago. In 2018, the iPhone 5 joined the vintage devices. This year, the iPhone 6 Plus joined the list. This was launched in September 2014 and was released until September 2016.
The iPhone 6 Plus is now considered obsolete by Apple
The classic iPhone 6, which was released during the same period, did not join the list. Indeed, although the smartphone was also launched for the first time in 2014, Apple decided in 2017 to market it as a mid-range model, like today’s iPhone SE. It will therefore be necessary to wait a few more years before seeing it join his big brother.
The iPhone 6 Plus will no longer receive any updates from Apple. The US manufacturer stopped offering feature updates to the device in 2019 with the release of iOS 13, which excluded iPhone 6s and iPhone 5S. From now on, the smartphone will no longer even be entitled to security patches.
Gradually, Apple will also stop offering a repair service for its iPhone 6 Plus. You should be able to fix it until September 2023, but by then some parts might go missing. On that date, Apple will permanently stop offering repairs on the device, and third-party resellers will no longer be able to order replacement parts from Apple.
If you don’t want to have your device repaired by Apple, know that you will soon be able to do it yourself thanks to Self Service Repair, the self-service repair program launched by Apple. All you have to do is order official spare parts for your smartphone and follow the explanatory documents that will be available online to guide you through the process.
The best-selling iPhone becomes part of history
A previous Apple internal memo, leaked to the media, says the company will add the iPhone 6 Plus to its list of obsolete products as early as December 31st. This means that more than five years have passed since Apple stopped distributing and selling the device. However, the Apple Store and Apple Authorized Service Providers will continue to provide repair services for such items. Of course, everything will depend on the availability of spare parts.
The iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus, released in September 2014, are Apple’s best-selling smartphones in history. They received 4.7- and 5.5-inch screens and became the first devices to support Apple Pay. Other key features included the Apple A8 platform and a much improved camera.
The iPhone 6 Plus was discontinued in 2016; and the smaller iPhone 6 was available through select retailers in some regions until at least 2018. Despite this, many still use these phones.
In terms of software, with the release of iOS 13, Apple has dropped support for the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus.