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iPhone 6 review

evan kypreos

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Reviewed:

Awards

  • Recommended by TR

Summary

Our Score:

9

User Score:

Pros

  • Great 4.7-inch screen
  • Good all-round camera
  • Class-leading performance
  • Great new software features

Cons

  • Expensive
  • Shorter battery life than rivals

Key Features

  • 4.7-inch screen
  • Apple A8 processor
  • Up to 128GB storage
  • NFC (Apple Pay only)
  • Touch ID fingerprint scanner
  • Manufacturer: Apple
  • Review Price: £539.00

Updated: 22 September 2015

Related: iPhone 7 release date

Apple iPhone fans on a budget have traditionally had a tough time of it and this remained true in 2015.

Despite the success of the moderately more affordable iPhone 5C, come the firm’s big 2015 iPhone event, Apple chose not to release a follow-up to the colourful handset. Instead Apple unveiled the iPhone 6S, which carries a premium price tag.

However, Apple has wisely chosen keep selling and reduce the price of its 2014 iPhone 6. The phone still features powerful internal components and is being upgraded to Apple’s latest iOS 9 software. The combination of factors mean it could be the ideal choice for bargain hunters.

We’re working of an updated iPhone 6, with iOS 9 review. Make sure to check back and find out if the iPhone 6 is the iOS-flavoured bargain Apple-fans need.

VIDEO: What's new in iOS 9?

What is the iPhone 6?

When it was released in 2014 the iPhone 6 was one of the hottest smartphone on the market.

Featuring a completely rethought design, Apple loaded the iPhone 6 with a wealth of custom software and hardware features.

The combination of hardware and software features made the iPhone 6 one of the most innovative and powerful smartphones ever seen.

However, one year on Apple’s competitors have come out swinging releasing their own wave of top-end innovative handsets.

Chief among these have been LG with its stellar G4 handset and Samsung with its Galaxy S6, Galaxy S6 Edge and Galaxy S6 Edge+ range of smartphones.

Each featuring a similarly impressive array of custom technologies the phones have made many buyers justifiably question if the iPhone 6’s time in the sun has ended and they’d be better off waiting for Apple’s next iPhone.

However, having used the iPhone 6 solidly since it’s launch, we’re happy to report even though it’s beginning to show its age, there is still plenty to like about Apple's 2014 flagship.

SEE ALSO: iPhone 6 vs Samsung Galaxy S6

iPhone 6: Design – Apple's on to a winner

The iPhone 6 opts for soft curves and seamless joins between the screen and the back. It's a very different look from the iPhone 5S, which has shiny machined edges. Barring some plastic detailing on the rear it’s all glass and metal, and looks great for it.

iPhone 6 40

It’s not as striking as its predecessor. The angular design of the iPhone 5S made it stand out amore. It’s the same with the iPad mini and iPad Air, although they marry the diamond cut edges with rounded metal sides.

It may not be as instantly arresting, but the iPhone 6 looks like it’s been hewn from a single piece of metal and glass and fused seamlessly together. The effect is particularly strong in the space grey finish and with the screen turned off. It is a beautiful slab of black glass and anodised aluminium. We feel the design is safe rather than ground-breaking, though. The white bezel on the silver version ruins the seamless effect a little – we’d go for space grey every time.

SEE ALSO: iPhone 6 vs iPhone 6 Plus

The iPhone 5S, left, next to the iPhone 6

As always with Apple’s phones the iPhone 6 has superb balance, it just feels right in your hand. The comfy edges are also a lot easier on the palm than the sharper ones on the iPhone 5S and the 6.9mm thickness makes it feel sleek yet strong.

Some owners are claiming that it may not be quite as robust as Apple hopes. Reports of the iPhone 6 bending in pockets have surfaced. We’ve had it in the front pocket of jeans and have not experienced any issues for the months we've been using it or the iPhone 6 Plus. We're not talking super skinny jeans, but we've been cycling with it in tight pockets and there's not been a bend in sight. In fact since the initial furore we've heard very little about it. We've hear similar reports surfacing about the Samsung Galaxy S6 but unless you intend to use your iPhone 6 as a see-saw we wouldn't worry about it at all.

We do suggest you fork out for a case, though. Like all phones you run the risk of smashing the screen if you drop it and iPhone 6 repairs don't come cheap. Check out our selection of the best iPhone 6 cases before you buy.

It’s big, but not too big

While the iPhone 6 is bigger, it doesn't feel too big. Aside from being much thinner and lighter at just 129g it’s very similar in size to the original HTC One, one of our favourite phones of 2013. If you have small hands you might struggle to get to the top corners of the screen, but we've not experienced these problems.

SEE ALSO: iPhone 6 vs Samsung Galaxy S5

iPhone 6 57

There is some help if you do find the screen of the iPhone 6 too big. Clunky one-handed use features are available on some Android phones, but they’ve never felt particularly intuitive. They often just shrink the whole screen diagonally down. Apple has come up with a typically elegant solution. Tap twice on the home button and the entire top of the screen jumps down bringing all the hard to reach areas into your thumbs range. It works on every app that works in portrait mode too, so you can easily get to the address bar or a browser without a problem.

Realising a power button at the top of the phone of this size doesn’t work Apple has moved it. The power button is at the right edge, above the nanoSIM tray. This makes it easy to access with your thumb, if you’re right -anded or with your index finger if you’re a lefty. It works a lot better than the top power button on the HTC One M8 which requires a little juggling to get to if you’re not ET.

In all other respects the layout of the iPhone 6 is the same as previous versions. The slightly recessed volume buttons sit on the left just under the mute toggle. The 3.5mm headphone jack resides at the bottom, with the lightning port and six handsome holes for the speaker.

SEE ALSO: iOS 8 Tips, Tricks and Secrets

iPhone 6 58

There’s only one area where the iPhone 6 deviates from the principles of smooth, seamless design and that’s with the rear camera. To ensure no compromise on image quality due to the slimness of the phone, Apple has had to raise the camera slightly from the body. But it isn't anywhere near as severe as some other phones. Put a case on and you won’t notice this at all, but you will feel it when holding the phone in landscape. Helpfully, the edges are lightly chamfered, which means it slips into pockets without snagging at all.

Related: Best Mobile Deals: Top Smartphone offers this month

iPhone 6 59

All-in-all the iPhone 6 has an accomplished design. It doesn't scream 'look at me', instead it’s refined, elegant and ergonomic, great for long hours of use, whether you’re gaming or visiting your favourite sites. Do we like it more than the HTC One M8’s design? The jury’s still deliberating; we have mixed views at the TrustedReviews' offices.

There’s one final thing to talk about. The iPhone 6 is not water or dust resistant unlike the Galaxy S5 or Sony Xperia Z3. If that’s important for you then you’ll need to either opt for a waterproof case or go for one of the Android phones.

Next: iPhone 6 Screen

Carrier pricing updates & information supplied by WhistleOut

MattMe

September 10, 2014, 8:39 am

Is nobody going to mention how the camera lens sticks out of the body?
I thought Apple put design first! Crikey...

dpanch_89

September 10, 2014, 8:43 am

Doesn't really matter because 99% of iPhone owners get some sort of case for it.
Also, may be more useful for 3rd party lenses/photography mods to attach to it.

MattMe

September 10, 2014, 9:06 am

You, sir, are correct; most owners wil get a case for it. I wouldn't say that means it doesn't matter, but I see where you're coming from.

It does make me do a little chuckle when folk spend all this cash on a fancy phone and then wrap a chinku £5 market-find case around it.

It does seem a little odd that it protudes in my opinion. Like they couldn't quite get it to fit so "sod it - people are only going to put a case on it anyway"... Not very 'Apple', is it?

mode11

September 10, 2014, 9:47 am

i expect it was either that, use a lower spec camera (like the Facetime one, which does fit), or make the whole phone as thick as the camera. I'm sure they'd prefer it was flush, but those were the options.

Prem Desai

September 10, 2014, 9:55 am

The camera's lens is the least concern. The phone is slim but fugly.

Looks like a second hand device from the 90s...

Makes efforts from HTC, Samsung, etc look stellar.

ElectricSheep

September 10, 2014, 12:39 pm

Err, where's the innovation? I'm sure they will sell millions since it's a nice package but, the price is ridiculous and brings nothing new or exciting to the table. I can't believe these phones don't come with wireless charging. And as for NFC, well about time. I'll update my current Nexus 5 to the 6, been really happy with this phone and the price is excellent. As for the Apple Watch - oh dear.

Bruce Jefferies

September 10, 2014, 12:47 pm

Would it really have been the end of the world if the phone was as thick as the camera? At least then they might have got a better battery in it as well. I really don't understand the obsession with having everything as thin as possible. Sure, if it was really chunky it would be a bit cumbersome, but surely nobody would have noticed an extra millimetre.

mode11

September 10, 2014, 1:11 pm

I'm inclined to agree, though it seems Apple didn't. The extra volume would add weight though, assuming it's full of battery.

mode11

September 10, 2014, 1:21 pm

The pace of upgrades is never going to be as fast as in the early years of a new category. As smartphones mature it's understandable that they tend to be refined rather then revolutionised. All the low hanging fruit have been picked.

NFC is a good example of how Apple works though. Whereas Samsung would just chuck it in their latest phone as soon as the sensors are available, Apple has spent time getting agreements in place with banks to actually make it useful.

iOS + a 4.7" screen is new and exciting. Best of both worlds, and will probably see a lot of people returning to iPhones.

A. Mir

September 10, 2014, 2:20 pm

I sense a lot of women will try and avoid this one (the 4.7" version), and keep on to their 4s or 5s.

A 4.3" would be the perfect size, IMO. Hell, even 4" is enough for daily tasks.
...And this is coming from an HTC One (not Mini!) owner.

ElectricSheep

September 10, 2014, 3:39 pm

I do agree with you. But, I do expect a lot more from Apple these days, rather than refining existing technologies and ideas and eventually adopting standards and features that have been around for years (and making them work well: duly noted :) ).

They are a massively cash rich company and innovation used to very much be a part of their ethos, but for the last few years all they seem to have done is refined and redesigned a single product, allbeit in varying sizes which, in itself is a good thing...the 911 of the phone world, but I expect industry leading innovation from Apple these days, especially at the ridiculous prices they ask.

The larger screens will undoubtedly attract a huge flow of customers back to iOS, but I'm not so sure that this will be enough to keep Apple on the up & up in the long run.

And where's wireless charging??!

coolcity

September 10, 2014, 3:51 pm

Agree totally. No increase in screen resolution which is now well below every other flagship handset. No 4K video recording. Only just added NFC, a feature now available on some entry level phones, and there's no support for ApplePay outside of the US as far as I can gather so for most markets it's pointless anyway. No increase in camera pixel size, and the only "innovation" seems to have been to increase the aperture size to combat the truly awful low light performance of the 5s. The camera lens protrudes out. The design of the back, defined by the aerial requirements, looks like 2 pieces stuck on the top and bottom almost as an afterthought, whereas the lines of the HTC One M8 blend into the design. No USB, no memory card slot etc. etc. And only a 4.7 inch screen when most people buying flagship phones seem to have settled on 5 inch as the size of choice. Apple have been playing catchup for some time and this was their big chance. They blew it.

mode11

September 10, 2014, 4:07 pm

It's tempting to think that Tim Cook is not the inspirational leader Steve Jobs was, and that the output of the company has become iterative rather than bold. A salesman replaced by an accountant (I know, 'supply chain manager', but he looks like an accountant!). Don't know if this really reflects what's going on inside the company though, or whether it's just a lazy narrative.

The thing is, companies can bring out lots of new features / products, but how many can ever be genuinely useful? The Apple Watch is arguably an innovation (for Apple at least), but its utility is dubious (for now, admittedly).

Manny

September 10, 2014, 4:33 pm

I don't understand why everyone complains and makes comparisons to Android OS devices. Sure they don't have the latest and greatest specs and features, but that's not why people buy them. Apple makes solid devices that works extremely well and is extremely user friendly. If your using an Android OS device that is stock then the whole "well I'm on android because I have the freedom to do whatever I want with it", argument is completely pointless because your not doing shit with it besides using the stock UI. In addition to that, if your complaining because it doesn't record in 4k and you dont even own a 4k TV/monitor to enjoy what you record then just shoot your self because your so retarded if you think having that kind of functionality is worth buying a device over. I have friends that use Android phones and hack the shit out of them to do some amazing things and thats awesome. They make valid arguments as to why Android suits their needs and why iOS devices never will. At the end of the day no one is telling you to buy an Android OS device or and iOS device. Just get whatever suits your lifestyle and quite bitching about who has what or who's is better. Its completely biased and always will be.

toboev

September 10, 2014, 5:04 pm

"i expect it was either that, use a lower spec camera"

Or they could have just made the phone thick enough to house its internals without some of them sticking out. But of course then they would lose out in the anorexia wars.

For the record, I wish Samsung (and the rest) would also make their phones fat enough to properly house the camera gubbins - if that means there is extra room for more battery, how is that a bad thing? I really see no advantage in 6mm or 7mm or 8mm thickness for its own sake - I just want the phone to fit inside itself.

edward

September 10, 2014, 5:07 pm

So a "retina" display that is below 1080, how is that acceptable ? especially when we have had it on other mobiles phones for the past 12 months for sub £300...

I just don't know how anyone can defend that if im honest. Also the whole pixel count is becoming a joke "more pixel dont mean better picture" and your quite right saying that but, It does help to zoom in on pictures to be honest. No reason not to improve the pixel count as well as the lens, Really is there....

mode11

September 10, 2014, 5:23 pm

To be fair, that was the third option I mentioned. And for the record, I would certainly sacrifice a mm for additional battery life - my 4S barely makes it through a day of moderate use.

toboev

September 10, 2014, 7:01 pm

Doh, missed that!

John

September 10, 2014, 7:01 pm

Even if Apple had ticked all your boxes, you still wouldn't have liked it. Along with millions of other Android users. They are never going to appeal to people who simply don't like the fact that Apple 'exist'.

Po Guevara

September 10, 2014, 8:53 pm

the only difference... is it will work 10 times better than Samsung out of the box and the features will just keep coming as more people develop software for it. The iWatch may have been copied from Samsung... but lest be serious... Android users stuck with very crappy ppi screens up until the iPhone 5 came out --- The retina display is better than 90% of the android phones out on the market still today and every app uses it to the fullest capacity... On the other hand android has to settle for the average phone cause they have good and bad phones out there... so software is never implemented to the devices ability making it hindered by design. The only company that *can* bring more innovation than apple at this time is the Windows phones which are already starting to make headlines. Other than that Android software has been ruined by the phone companies like T-Mobile and Verizon because of bloatware you can't get rid of and letting the shareholders define what the end user gets. Its inevitable for android to lose market shares to microsoft and Apple as long as they are the phone company's bitch

Po Guevara

September 10, 2014, 8:56 pm

Ok Ok Ok, calm down people... Lol Anyone here saying this phone does not meet their standards lmfaooo lets be serious... Your probably using an Android **a software I loved when they first implemented it, sadly now I despise it** Lets be serious anyone complaining about wireless charging... Wow.. you really do not understand how the business world works.. When I think of wireless 3 things pop in my mind first **Connectivity, Strength, and reliability** Basically a wired connection is the optimal source of power. Just like wired connection to your router will always be faster and more reliable and easier to connect overall than a wireless connection ever will be. So if a phone comes out and only offers wireless charging... I am staying very, very far away from it. Also wireless charging needs to be on some sort of charging pad if you will, or right next to the device... Sounds cool/// the transference of power via a wireless connector... but lets look at the consequences of a wireless power source.. First of all if you have one of those pads that you lay the device on.. You get a message or phone call, you pick the phone up to respond or answer... You just broke the connection. Lithium Batteries in all devices HATE being disconnected before a full charge.. It causes problems... and anyone who disagrees is just plain wrong. Also what kind of interference does this wireless charging cause to other wireless devices? Maybe nothing at all... but honestly.. I would bet there is some sort of interference overall.

Next... People complaining about the 4.7 inch screen... Then going on to say the 5 inch screen is more desirable... REALLY? .3 of an inch is that big of a difference? The iPhone was not created to blindly compete with unreliable phones. Samsung galaxy line is a major disappointment every time they release it... a bigger screen on a POS does not make me want it more lol AOLED or w-e its called is very shitty color properties... overly vibrant shades of certain colors that overwhelm the saturation.. They have not fixed this... and if your used to it by now... well that just sucks for you. The retina display **which Samsung produces anyway* is the "Super Mario" of screens... Not too big, the colors are perfect, and the ppi has not changed since it was implemented... The first phone ever to use it was the iPhone 4 which is arguably the most innovative phone in the past 5 or so years... The first phone to not look like jagged little blocks making up words and images... since there was science behind the design of the screen they were able to decide on the perfect ppi they called it retina because it was the amount of pixels needed for your eye not to notice they were pixels making up the words and images you see on your screen. The only screen I have seen that honestly looks better overall is the mobile version of Sony's bravia in their phones. Other than that HTC and Samsung and LG all have less desirable screens when I actually played around with them.

Next... Innovation... Apple has time and time again revolutionized the mobile market. With Steve Jobs deceased at this point... Apple has to keep the integrity of what he left behind... while still improving **tweaking** what they have and subtile upgrades. There is a reason why iPhones overall are 10 times more reliable with the software that is available and overall has a crisp feeling on their OS which cant be tampered by the phone companies. Android used to come unregulated on any carrier's phone... but sadly now when you buy an Android you have no idea what your getting... Tmobile's Android devices can and usually are pretty different from Sprints or Verizon's.. They are severly handicapped when the software that comes on the phone ** and usually is not an option to be removed** is forced on the device with no real concern for the end user... HTC on Sprint still lives in the 90's where Blockbuster is still relevant lmfaooo Its beating a dead horse at this time... they are clearly not gonna compete with netflix so why even try? Blockbuster sucked back in the 90's.. why keep it around for any longer to stink up our mobile devices?

The camera... Well iPhones users seem to post pleanty of pics on my facebook.. Overall they are pleasant to look at... same goes for android camera shots... nothing really to talk about unless your looking to get into photography... and if your using a cell phone to do so... your not getting very far. Please... Im content with 5 megapixles and flash--- anything more is just a bonus.

Divi ax

September 10, 2014, 11:21 pm

Why can I not buy any kind of phone that you can take pictures outside on a bright day

Guest

September 11, 2014, 7:47 am

Samsung looks stellar? cheap plastic with fake chrome sprayed on to fool people into thinking its made out of metal? yeah no thanks

mitchellvii

September 11, 2014, 12:00 pm

Although I think the design of the Apple Watch is a big disappointment, the new iPhone looks great. Of course the slimness and materials will be sacrificed to a case because face it, anyone who uses a phone without a case is an idiot. Anyway, Apple should sell the crap out of this to the faithful. The Apple Watch will also sell to the faithful but no one else.

TheConciseStatement

September 11, 2014, 4:30 pm

Even this size is a little big for my taste - I'm just not convinced by the phablet size shift in phones. However the dealbreaker for me last year was no 128GB model and that has finally been addressed, so I'm finally gonna put some money down on this. (And as I suspected, waiting another cycle to give Apple a chance to throw their hat into the mobile payments ring turned out to be a good move. Can't wait for it to come to a McDonalds here in the UK/Scotland.)

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