Touch ID and Ap­ple Pay

Mac Format - - RATED - The iPhone 6 and 6 Plus sup­ports Ap­ple Pay – Ap­ple’s credit/debit card re­place­ment that’s rolling out in the US.

top-left of the screen, and if you hold your iPhone in your right hand, even though Reach­a­bil­ity brings this ver­ti­cally down closer, it’s still not easy to reach across the iPhone to tap it with your thumb.

Some of the er­gonomic con­cerns can be solved with a case, since it can make it less slip­pery and eas­ier to grip, cov­ers up what for some are the un­sightly lines on the back that al­low for the an­ten­nas, and also solves the ir­ri­ta­tion of the cam­era lens stick­ing out at the back, but as soon as you put a case on you break one of the loveli­est fea­tures of the iPhone 6: the screen’s rounded edge.

Hey, good lookin’

It looks good – we’re still de­lighted by how light catches and flows around the curved edge of the screen – but more than that, it feels won­der­ful un­der your fin­gers. Whether you’re scrolling up a list and your thumb rolls off the right edge, or you’re swip­ing back a screen by drag­ging your thumb in from the left edge, that soft­ened perime­ter be­tween your phone and the rest of the world is a treat ev­ery time you en­counter it.

There are, of course, more ad­van­tages than just a pretty de­sign and a slightly larger screen (which is just as well since, un­like on the iPhone 6 Plus, you don’t get ex­tra fea­tures from the larger screen such as the iPad-like land­scape split screen op­tion.)

A quick side­bar: yes, apps have to be up­dated be­fore they can prop­erly take ad­van­tage of the ex­tra pix­els on the iPhone 6’s big­ger screen, but that will hap­pen (slowly in some cases) for most apps that most peo­ple use, and at worst, all you’ll get is a slightly softer, blown-up app. The high pixel den­sity (the same 326ppi as the iPhone 4–5s, though lower than the 401ppi of the 6 Plus) and more-than-com­pe­tent scal­ing to­gether mean the ef­fect isn’t too egre­gious, although the slightly dif­fer­ing key­board in scaled and na­tive apps can play merry hell with your mus­cle mem­ory.

The cam­era, though it doesn’t have the Plus’ op­ti­cal im­age sta­bil­i­sa­tion, is im­proved; most no­tice­able is the new faster fo­cussing. It ac­tu­ally takes a while to train your­self out of hav­ing to wait a beat for the cam­era to fo­cus if you’ve been us­ing iPhones be­fore, and the con­tin­u­ous aut­o­fo­cus is es­pe­cially wel­come when shoot­ing video of un­pre­dictable and fast-mov­ing sub­jects such as chil­dren or pets. It’s not flaw­less – if only be­cause it’s hav­ing to pick what to fo­cus on al­go­rith­mi­cally in dy­namic sit­u­a­tions rather than be­ing di­rected by a hu­man – but it’s a big im­prove­ment. Also wel­come is the abil­ity – thanks pre­sum­ably in part at least to the more ca­pa­ble A8 pro­ces­sor – to shoot Full HD at 60 frames per sec­ond for but­tery-smooth re­sults, and to shoot (al­beit at the lower HD stan­dard, 720p) at 240fps for hugely im­pres­sive slow-mo videos. iOS 8 un­locks the cam­eras’ cre­ative abil­i­ties too, not only of­fer­ing slid­ing ex­po­sure com­pen­sa­tion in the builtin Cam­era app, but also let­ting de­vel­op­ers cre­ate apps (such as Cam­era+ and Man­ual Cam) that give full man­ual con­trol; in short, the most popular cam­era in the world

When you see how slim the iPhone is, you re­alise why Ap­ple wanted to switch to the Light­ning port! Note that for many, the slim­ness will feel a lit­tle dis­con­cert­ing in the hand.

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