iPhone 6: The Full Story
It’s been a couple of months since the iPhone 6 was launched and we thought it was about time we had a catch up on what was new with our favourite fruit-based gadget..
A matter of weeks after the iPhone 6 launch event and reports were coming in that the handset’s new owners were finding that they were bending with very little encouragement – prompting dozens of tech sites to run their own bend tests to try to identify the veracity of the claims.
It’s a story they covered over on The Verge back in November in which reporter Dan Seifert explained how his iPhone 6 had indeed bent – without him being able to identify how – but that he was able to swap it for a brand new one with little fuss.
What’s more, some independent testing conducted by Consumer Reports – a US-based non-profit organisation – found that the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus handsets didn’t actually bend any more than the LG G3, Samsung Galaxy Note 3 or the HTC One M8, suggesting that the fears may have been a bit overblown in the first place.
iOS 8.1 Woes
This year not only saw the launch of the next iPhone but also the next iOS update, and as usual the new operating system came equipped with numerous bugs and irritations that users had to deal with. Some of the most common included:
Battery life not up to scratch
This is a common problem for users of all makes of smart phone simply due to the sheer amount of stuff they are required to do, however it was a common theme on forums, Twitter and handset reviews post-launch – even for the supposedly long-lasting iPhone 6 Plus.
Drop-outs and slow performance are both problems with the iOS 8.1 update – a major annoyance particularly as most apps use the internet in some capacity.
Apple’s native web browser is regularly an issue on iPhones, and it has proved no different on the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus, with slow page loads or a huge temporary data cache which can also cause stuttering performance.
Fortunately those clever guys over at Gizmodo put together a handy guide on how to fix them.
The wait is finally over.
For millions of Apple devotees all over the world, 9th September 2014 marked the end to over a year of wild speculation, educated guesses and a how load of excitement and anticipation.
I don’t know why anyone would want an iPhone 6. I’ve had the same phone for the last 10 years and it does everything. pic.twitter.com/DFETZfSZYh
— JamieDMJ (@JamieDMJ) September 9, 2014
Any Apple product launch feels almost Evangelical in nature, and the iPhone 6 and iWatch launch event was no different, with Tim Cook orchestrating his audience more like a eulogising preacher than a CEO.
So as the dust settles and the tech giant’s congregation get their hands on the latest devices, at Fone Angels we’ve taken a look back over the last 12 months to see how the iPhone 6 tale has evolved.
The Rumour Mill
With any big product launch there is always a plethora of rumours that can range from the accurate to the completely insane, and this is no more so true than with Apple product launches.
The first rumours began emerging as long ago as November last year – just two months after the iPhone 5S and 5C handsets launched.
The speculation that originated in a Japanese magazine called Mac Fan suggested that:
• The iPhone 6 would include a full HD 1080p Retina screen;
• First hint that the handset would be larger, measuring 5 inches diagonally, although the article also suggests that Apple hadn’t decided on size at this stage;
• A launch date of September 2014 was also predicted – which of course turned out to be true.
— JeffH (@JeffHervel) September 9, 2014
By February of this year the larger handset rumours persisted without having been confirmed, while there was a suggestion that Apple would name the new, slimmed down device the iPhone Air to fall into line with their iPad and Macbook products.
Another good news. Next gen iPhone possibly will be on market in June. Shorter cycles for the whole industry
— Eldar Murtazin (@eldarmurtazin) January 21, 2014
One rumour that was accurate though was the use of Sapphire Glass for the screen, while the inevitable slim-down of the chassis was also hinted at.
As you’d expect, just one month before the launch of the iPhone 6 and it was less rumour and more preview of what we almost certainly expect to see.
The different handset sizes were anticipated, iOS8 was no longer a secret while the Sapphire displays (in place of Gorilla Glass) and aluminium chassis were also correctly predicted. One thing that didn’t come to fruition however was the 13MP camera, although the 8MP rear camera represents a significant advancement on the camera found on the 5S – but we’ll get to that later.
8 of the Most Ridiculous iPhone 6 Rumours
Apple are renowned for their innovation in technology, and so perhaps we shouldn’t be surprised that people sometimes expect things from Apple that aren’t always feasible. Here are 8 iPhone 6 features that we didn’t see unveiled on September 9.
A Wrap-around Screen
A screen that goes all the way round the back of the device? Awesome! Why? Well… not sure really.
Apple have indeed patented this idea (but then they patent pretty much every idea, y’know, just in case) however practically speaking there are too many issues with the concept. It would require an awful lot of processing power, would damage the thriving third party case market and also be generally pretty unwieldy.
Again something the tech giant has patented, however it has proved that the concept is no closer to finding its way into Apple devices, although if you listen to 4chan (don’t) you might be able to charge your new iPhone 6 in the microwave…
Another one of those concepts which sounds cool if a little unnecessary, face-recognition unlock was never likely to make it passed the drawing board considering the investment Apple has made into the TouchID fingerprint scanner, while it would require a lot of power and could make day-to-day use a slower process.
This is one innovation that Apple fans would almost certainly universally deride, as it would not only mean that you could only use Apple-licensed headphones with the iPhone 6 but that you couldn’t charge your phone and listen to music at the same time.
Forced hardware is certainly something Apple are fans of, however the negative impact on user experience would likely bring with it too much criticism.
Blood Pressure/Heart Rate Monitoring
The health app built-in to iOS 8 fuelled rumours that Apple may utilise the earbuds for monitoring heart rate and blood pressure.
This wouldn’t have been impossible, but with the iWatch designed to offer the same functionality it would’ve been foolish to undermine what their brand new device can offer.
This particular rumour was started by a concept render which was created by designer Sahanan Yogarasa – a controller peripheral that the device can simply slot into. However what with a plethora of third-party controllers already available, as well as Apple’s apparent lack of interest in getting involved, this rumour was dead in the water from the start.
An Illuminated Apple Logo
The logo on the back of a MacBook lights up – so why not on the iPhone 6? It could alert the user of calls, messages or notifications – it’d look great too. Once again however, it’s that pesky battery life that would have stopped this coming to fruition – if it was ever an option – particularly as battery life is already an issue for iPhones.
Samsung unveiled a flexible concept device at this year’s CES, so it wouldn’t be surprising if Apple wasn’t far behind. However, despite the technology already being available, the screen would still need to be bonded to the non-flexible phone chassis, a problem yet to be overcome and arguably further away since the introduction of the Sapphire Glass. Though perhaps it is a secret feature that Apple just haven’t shared with their public…
The iPhone 6 event featured just as much hyperbole and mawkish eulogising as we’ve come to expect from an Apple product launch. With that in mind, who better than Bono to bring an end to the wholly self-satisfied proceedings, but it was the deets on the phone itself that everyone had gathered to hear – so what does the new handset offer?
As you’ll know already the iPhone 6 is available in two different sizes, with the Plus offering the larger screen that Apple fans have been crying out to see for some time, while both of the new models are slimmer than the 5S to varying degrees – as well as lighter. So far, so expected.
— Evening Standard (@standardnews) September 10, 2014
The display quality has been enhanced significantly too, with the 6 offering a resolution of 1334 x 750 in Apple’s new ‘Retina HD’ display, while the 6 Plus provides a 1920 x 1080 Full HD display.
There’s a whole host of new features available with the iPhone 6, including better battery life, the new iOS 8 operating system and Apple Pay, but to get the low-down on the whole lot check out Tech Radar’s excellent coverage.
The Apple Watch
The arrival of an iWatch has long been anticipated from those who follow Apple closely, and although it does not possess that particular moniker, the Apple Watch was unveiled as a rather significant “and one more thing” by Tim Cook.
Compatible with the iPhone 6 and designed to work seamlessly with iOS 8, the Apple Watch delivers Facebook updates, Siri and simplified versions of some of our favourite apps.
One of the key features of the Apple Watch is Fitness, accompanied by a companion app on the iPhone, allowing you to check out your daily activity at a glance and monitor trends over time. You can find information on all of the Apple Watch features here.
Ground-breaking innovation or flashy gimmick? Only time will tell.
— © LOKI-TheFurious (@LokiOddin0x) September 10, 2014
The iPhone 7?
With the dust barely having settled on the iPhone 6 launch event, here at Fone Angels we think there is no better time to start wildly speculating about what features might be found in a seventh iteration of Apple’s flagship device.
We can take a few things as read. It will be slimmer, faster, lighter and with an improved display resolution. Y’know, all those general specs that improve gradually over time for all tech devices. But what about the more outlandish features?
It’s likely that we’ll see some of the old iPhone 6 rumours resurface – such as wireless charging, wraparound and flexible screens – but we don’t doubt that the rumour mill will be hard at work to generate a whole new list of predictions. Here’s some of our own…
It won’t be called the iPhone 7
Up until now, every new iteration of the iPhone has simply been denoted by the next number, however it will get to a certain point that the iPhone X just won’t sound quite right – and we think it will be the next one. Perhaps they’ll drop the number altogether and just label it as iPhone – there’s something beautifully simplistic about that which matches their branding – or drop the Phone bit, and call it the i7? The other alternative would be a new, snazzy suffix, akin to the iPad Air.
The ghost of Steve Jobs
You could argue that the ghost of Steve Jobs has hung over Apple over the past year, what with accusations of a lack of innovation being levelled at the tech giant since Tim Cook took over as CEO, but what we mean is that the next iPhone might literally come possessed by the soul of Steve Jobs.
He could answer questions, send messages on your behalf and maybe even envelope the device in some sort of mystical, otherworldly forcefield.
It will act as a projector
It is suggested that this is something Apple might actually be looking at developing, while Apple filed a patent for the Projector as well as the emergence of some detailed diagrams coming to attention.
Dual sim cards
There are loads of people all over the world who require two phones – business professionals, philanderers, drug dealers – but a dual sim capability would allow you to switch between two numbers seamlessly on one device, saving money, inconvenience and pocket space.
The entire One:Direction back-catalogue will be included for free
Apple fans were “treated” to the new U2 album completely free for the launch of the iPhone 6, with it being beamed directly to their iTunes library whether they liked it or not, and it wouldn’t be surprising if a band uses the launch of the next iPhone to help get themselves back in the spotlight.
One:Direction might be suitably old news in a year’s time, and if they require a bit of exposure, what better way to achieve it than by forcing millions of people across the globe to begrudgingly listen to it.
Dual camera for 3D photos
You can’t really escape 3D media in 2014, and we don’t expect 2015 to be any different, although mobile devices have yet to make any forays into the third dimension. Could the iPhone 7 be the first? We wouldn’t put it past Apple, but it would require dual rear cameras and software that was able to combine the two pictures into a single 3D image.
So a few weeks on, what conclusions can we draw from the iPhone 6 launch?
Innovation really is becoming a rarity
The lack of innovation criticism levelled at Apple may have been assuaged somewhat by the introduction of the Apple Watch, however one can’t help feel that the iPhone 6 is a little underwhelming in terms of what it offers. Tim Cook proudly described the latest version as the best iPhone they’ve ever made, but then as the newest you’d kind of expect nothing less – and it is the degrees by which it is the best that might concern some.
The future’s bigger
Once upon a time a sign of advancement was considered to be how small we could make stuff. Nowadays however, it is all about increased dimensions, with Apple finally delivering the larger model that iPhone users have been waiting on for ages.
— Comedy Tweets (@TheComedyJokes) September 10, 2014
Thinner and lighter is still the order of the day, but with the Samsung Note leading the way in terms of screen size, it’s about time that Apple caught up with the trend.
Bono is no less irritating
From the wearing sunglasses indoors to the weird, triangle finger thing we did with Tim Cook, it is clear that Bono is every bit as annoying as ever. And now we all get to enjoy his music forcibly for free!
Apple are still the guys to beat
It would be easy to take nothing but negatives from the iPhone 6 launch, but the fact remains that Apple are still the brand to beat when it comes to mobile tech. Samsung, HTC and Sony have all been closing the gap on Apple for some time, but with the iPhone 6 they are still, just about, top of the tree in terms of both performance as well as aesthetics.