In addition to announcing the iPhone 6, Apple has also, for the first time ventured in the phablet realm with the all new iPhone 6 Plus.
Android devices already have a firm footing in the phablet realm, with the Galaxy Note series, Sony Xperia Z Ultra and LG’s G3, Windows Phone has made its presence known with the Lumia 1520 and Lumia 1320. It was about time for Apple to step in the territory, and step it did. The iPhone 6 Plus is a 5.5-inch phablet. So without further ado, let’s dig in and find out what Apple’s phablet has in for us.
The iPhone 6 Plus has similar footprint to that of the iPhone 6, there are a few notable changes. Due to its bigger profile, the device is slightly thicker than the iPhone 6 at 7.1mm thin. Its still remarkably thinner than many other handsets out there. As with the bigger size, the power button is located on the side of both the iPhone 6 and Plus. As said above, the iPhone 6 Plus is also made of anodized aluminum and a stainless steel frame to ensures rigidity.
The display is a 5.5-inch Retina HD, which means a resolution of 1920x1080p, in other words full-HD. The pixel density is 400ppi. iOS 8 has been fully tweaked to support the larger display of the iPhone 6 Plus. Apps will work fine, courtesy desktop-class scaler, until devs update their apps to support the new resolution and size. It was highly rumored that the iPhone 6 Plus will feature sapphire glass protection, though that rumor didn’t come to fruition as Apple has opted to use ‘Ion-strengthened glass’, which will protect the iPhone 6 Plus from scratches and other cosmetic damage. In addition to that, the glass protection is curved around the edges for a more seamless experience when swiping.
The iPhone 6 Plus is also powered by the A8 SoC, along with the M8 co-processor. For a detailed outlook on the specifications, check out our iPhone 6 coverage.
At the back, the 8MP iSight camera, although old is improved a bit. The f/2.2 aperture lens helps in low-light photography, and the overall performance is much more better. It shoots videos at 1080p in 30 and 60FPS. Slo-mo is also present, though it is greatly improved and features shooting at 240FPS. In short, its the same camera as the iPhone 6, though with optical image stabilization – a first for the company.
The battery is bigger than the iPhone 6, and the company has made bold claims about the device’s battery. According to Apple, the iPhone 6 Plus will feature an astonishing 24 hours of 3G talk-time, up from 10 hours on the iPhone 5s. Apple estimates the iPhone 6 Plus will outlast the iPhone 6 by a considerable margin. Although we’ll wait for real world tests before saying anything, but for now it seems the iPhone 6 Plus will crush the trend of iPhones with terrible battery life.
Additionally, the iPhone 6 Plus is well stocked in the connectivity department with Wi-Fi 802.11ac, Bluetooth 4.0, LTE and NFC. The iPhone 6 Plus features 20 LTE bands, and includes ‘carrier aggregation’ feature used to achieve optimum speeds on LTE. NFC is a first for the company, and Apple will utilize ‘Apple Pay service’ for transactions and such.
iOS 8 has been neatly tweaked to take advantage of the iPhone 6 Plus’s larger 5.5-inch display. Apple has included a few neat tricks to help its consumer adapt to the larger display.
The iPhone 6 Plus offers split-screen mode in several apps like earlier leaks have suggested. The ‘reachability’ feature, which is also available on the iPhone 6 is a neat feature which sees the interface slide downwards when the home-button is double-tapped. It makes to incredibly easy for users to navigate the iOS 8 UI with just one hand. Apple’s commitment to make its smartphone easy to use for one hand shows even here. The ‘reachability’ feature will resolve the issue of phablet users having to use two hands to use their smartphones. The iPhone 6 Plus also has iPad-like interface, with the former following the company’s layout structure of the iPad when in landscape mode. Not only that, it also borrows much of its design language from the iPad. The iPhone 6 Plus sites between the regular iPhone 6 and the iPad Air, taking notes from both sides and incorporating a much more usable and sensible interface. The iPhone 6 Plus is not just a smartphone with a large display, it offers much more than that.
The iPhone 6 Plus will also be available in Space Gray, Gold and White color configurations. The device is priced at $299, $399, and $499 for the 16, 64 and 128GB versions on contract, respectively, in the U.S. Factory unlocked iPhone 6 Plus will cost €800 (£619 in UK), €900 (£700) and €1000 (£790) for the 16, 64 and 128GB versions . Pre-orders start on September 12, while the phones will ship on the 19th.