John Galea's Blog

My blog on Gadgets and the like

iPhone 6 review

I enjoyed my time with the iPhone 5s but screen size and I bought too small memory meant I couldn’t live on it. I did a thorough post on the current iOS and I won’t repeat that here. I will try and talk about areas I did not explore or what’s new on the iPhone 6. The 6 is a departure from past iPhones, it’s much more round on the edges and it looks a lot more elegant. I really like the look. Mine is Gold in color, 64G so lots of storage for my music and stuff. The phone is at 9.2.1 (13D15) for reference.

Let’s start with physicals
123.8 x 58.6 x 7.6 mm and weighs 112 grams (iPhone 5S)
138.1 x 67 x 6.9 mm and 129 grams (iPhone 6)
143.4 x 70.5 x 6.8 mm and weighs 138 grams (Samsung S6 for comparison)

That comes up to 28% larger than the 5S and it is noticeable. And just the right size. I owned a Samsung note for a while and it was just too big. The iPhone 6 Plus by the way is about the same size as the Samsung Note so not something I considered. A friend once said it’s too small to be a tablet and too big to be a phone. 🙂

4.7-inch 1334-by-750-pixel resolution at 326 ppi
4.0-inch 1136-by-640-pixel resolution at 326 ppi (iPhone 5s for reference)

Apple really want to their customers to upgrade to a new phone each and every time it comes out. So they have focussed on making this process as easy as possible. Android/Samsung could learn a LOT from them. I have spent countless hours every time I change my Android phone, and as my readers know, that’s often. So I was really interested to see how Apple do it. Well it couldn’t be easier and less painful. You create a phone backup on iTunes (or on the cloud) if you’ve enabled that. Then when you power on the new phone you get asked if you want to restore it from an existing phone or setup a new one. Simply restore from the backup of your old phone and that’s it. The phone then proceeds to download the apps you previously had on your phone and most of the settings are kept. Some of the apps required passwords to be re-entered but all in all it was a painless process. Shockingly so. Kudos to Apple.

Bluetooth keyboards work just fine, and brilliantly Apple turns off the onscreen keyboard once the Bluetooth keyboard is connected. Why can’t Microsoft learn that trick? Bluetooth mice as always with iPhone/iPads are ignored.

The battery is 1810mAh Vs 1560 for the 5s or an increase of 16% over the iPhone 5s.

On WIFI standby the phone consumed a meager 1% per hour for a projected battery life of 100 hours (measured on 22 hours). For comparison the Samsung S6 which was a whole lot better than the S5 consumed 1.13%/hr. When you take into account that the iPhone’s battery is smaller than the Samsung S6 this means the iPhone 6 has 39% better standby power management than the already impressive S6. Wow.

Turn on the LTE radio on standby and the phone consumes 1.2% per hour for a projected battery life of 85 hours. This translates to about an 18% increase in power consumption on the cell. This is actually not bad. Samsung have worked a lot on cell standby power, so much so that on the S5/S6 there was little to no power cost to using the cell instead of wifi.

The iPhone 6 ships with a standard 5V 1A charger or 5Watts. So let’s have a look at charge times:
Using the 12W charger, in a little over an hour the phone went from 28 to 85% or about .95%/min for a projected full charge time of 1 hr 45mins.
With the stock charger it went from 37% to 84% in just under an hour or .92%/min. for a projected full charge time of 1 hr 49 mins. So well within error. So it means for the iPhone 6 there is no benefit to the higher wattage charger.

Apple have still not embraced wireless charging. A shame really, so I bought an iTian wireless cover that is a TPU gel case with a built in wireless coil. It says it puts out 400-700ma (Vs the 1A of the default charger). This charged the iPhone at a rate of about 0.53% per min or a projected full charge of just over 3 hours. It turns out to be about 60% the speed of the wired charger. Perfect for the evening or while your at your desk. If there is any downside to this case is you have to remove it if you want to use the wired charger for a quick blast or to use an external battery pack or to connect to iTunes by wire.
I had an issue with a torx head hanging low on the one I bought (a defect) that made it too sharp so I returned it and bought a second different one, a Qi-infinity™ Wireless Charger Qi Receiver Phone Case for iPhone 6.
This one is a much more clever design. It has cutouts for the power button, volume controls, silence button etc. The connection to the lightning connector can be simply and easily slid down for you to be able to use a car charger, wired connection to iTunes etc. This one charged the phone from 57% TO 84% in an hour or about 0.45% per hour about half speed compared to the stock charger. If there is any downside to this case they left the whole top of the phone unnecessarily exposed. There are no jacks, speakers, buttons etc on the top of the phone so I am not sure why they did that. The case itself well made, thin and light. A perfect add to the iPhone 6.

Find friends app is really neat. You set it up and in the future if you want to know where your family members are you can easily see it. Now that can be creepy and borderline stalking … From the app you can turn it on and off anytime you like.

The new A8 processor in the S6 is noticeably faster than the A7 of the iPhone 5s or iPad mini 2. Everything is instantaneous as it always is on an iPhone.

I have to say all in all I am happier with the iPhone and how much better it is than Android. Living on an Android phone is always a collection of irritants and imperfections. Things on an iPhone just seem to work better, smoother and more integrated. The dramatically better standby battery life is amazing.

All in all the iPhone 6 is an improved, larger 5S. Continuing the spirit of incremental improvements. The iPhone as a platform is stable, fast, and solid. Little to no pregnant pauses where you sit wondering WTF is my phone actually doing (compare with Android for example). Apple’s control of developers and lack of customization that is King in Android are likely one of the reasons the iPhone platform is as good as it is (performance and battery life). Background apps are particularly hog tied on iOS and it shows in things like exercise apps. Android wear really is in it’s infancy on iOs. But all in all there’s lots to like in an iPhone.


February 22, 2016 - Posted by | Uncategorized

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