“The iPhone 6 Plus marks a huge shift in Apple’s iPhone portfolio”
The Apple iPhone is one of the most iconic gadgets ever, and so far, the brand has always focussed on the device’s one-handed utility. Giving in to the market dynamics and the ever-increasing demand from its loyal fan-following, Apple has now gone the phablet way… and the result is the iPhone 6 Plus. Apart from the screen size, battery capacity and a few other features like optical image stabilisation thrown in, it’s not too different from its sibling the iPhone 6, and we’ve already taken a gander at that handset and its shooting prowess. Since most things are common between the duo, most of the things we addressed in our iPhone 6 FAQs are valid for the 6 Plus too. We now have the large-screened Apple device with us, and before we run it through our review gauntlet, let’s get a closer feel of its design and build.
Just like the iPhone 6, our 6 Plus review unit also came in gold, but you can opt for one in silver or grey as well. Looked upon from a distance, it could be slightly difficult to distinguish the two unless they’re placed side-by-side – they just look so similar apart from the size.
The mainstay of the 6 Plus is of course, its 5.5-inch display that makes it land firmly into phablet territory. The screen offers a resolution of 1,920 x 1,080 pixels – which is another first for the iPhone range, being the highest ever so far. The sleek styling and curvilicious casing we saw on the iPhone 6 is there on the 6 Plus as well, and makes the device look quite drool-inducing. Make no mistake – it’s a large device and isn’t too comfortable to hold and use with one hand. Moreover, it’s prone to slippage too, much more than the smaller model.
By now, we’re accustomed to large displays on Android phones, but the vast expanse on the 6 Plus’ fascia still seems quite interesting. The screen is Surrounded by a white bezel that sports the front camera, earpiece and sensors on top, and the circular home key that hides the Touch ID sensor below. At the rear, while bands break the otherwise seamless metal demeanour, with the protruding camera lens on top left flanked by a True Tone flash. The iconic Apple logo is quite visible, and you’ll find the iPhone branding and the regulatory info closer to the bottom.
The top is barren, while the bottom is crammed with a Lightning port, speaker and 3.5mm audio socket. The left spine holds the elongated volume keys and a mute button, while the right is home to the power key and a tray for the nano-SIM.
In terms of software, the 6 Plus runs iOS 8.1, complete with all the new features such as Continuity, Apple Pay (thanks to the addition of NFC), support for third-party keyboards, actionable notifications and iCloud Drive. We’ll be talking about how well these new features actually work as part of our iPhone 6 and 6 Plus reviews of course, but to get a detailed overview, do take a peek at our iOS 8 overview. Both the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus offer a new feature called Reachability that shrinks the app window towards the bottom of the screen by double tapping on the home button, and as you can fathom, helps in one-handed usability. One feature unique to the iPhone 6 Plus however, is the landscape view that changes a few apps like Mail to a two-paned layout – ensuring you can make the best use of that large screen real estate at your disposal.
The full HD screen on the iPhone 6 Plus looks scrumptious, and with its loaded specs and an platform known for its fluid operation, there was no question of any speed bumps. We’ll be stressing the device by using it as our daily driver and throwing intensive multitasking and heavy games into the mix to test its real-life capabilities soon though, and will also take its camera on a spin to see how much of a difference the added OIS makes. Keep your eyes peeled.
Related read: Apple iPhone 5s vs iPhone 6 vs iPhone 6 Plus
Photos and video by Pratik Vyas