TESTING OUT THE IPHONE 6 AND 6 PLUS

iPhone Life Magazine - - Istats - Cody Per­menter is a free­lance writer whose work has been fea­tured in pub­li­ca­tions like the New York Times, USA TO­DAY, and the Daily Dot. His spe­cial­ties in­clude so­cial me­dia, mo­bile tech­nol­ogy, and con­vinc­ing peo­ple that Mil­len­ni­als aren’t so bad af­ter al

The most dras­tic changes to the new iPhone 6 and 6 Plus are the di­men­sions of the phones, which, ac­cord­ing to Ap­ple, are “Big­ger than big­ger.” With 4.7- and 5.5-inch dis­plays on the 6 and 6 Plus, re­spec­tively, the phones live up to Ap­ple’s prom­ise. They are also the thinnest iPhones ever made, with the iPhone 6 com­ing in at 6.9 mm and the 6 Plus at 7.1 mm.

The phones sport a curvier de­sign, mak­ing ges­tures eas­ier and smoother across the screen. The sleep/ wake but­ton is now lo­cated on the side, pre­sum­ably so smaller fin­gers don’t have to strain to reach the top of the now-larger de­vice. And while there aren’t any huge changes to the cam­era on ei­ther of the de­vices, both now come with op­ti­cal im­age sta­bi­liza­tion, which mea­sures mo­tion data to re­duce shak­ing.

# BENDGATE

The re­lease of two new iPhones and iOS 8 was over­shad­owed by cus­tomers who took to so­cial me­dia sites with com­plaints that the iPhone 6 Plus was eas­ily bend­able. I vis­ited an Ap­ple store in Hous­ton to ask Ap­ple em­ploy­ees if they thought peo­ple’s con­cerns were valid. “Ev­ery­thing bends,” one Ap­ple em­ployee told me. “If you ap­ply enough pres­sure it is go­ing to bend—no doubt about that.”

I ex­pected the coy re­sponse, con­sid­er­ing Ap­ple’s of­fi­cial state­ment in­sisted that only a hand­ful of de­vices were af­fected. And while the on­line world may have ex­ag­ger­ated the ex­tent of Ap­ple’s cover-up, us­ing the term “Bendgate” in ref­er­ence to the con­tro­ver­sial is­sue on so­cial me­dia, the fact that the phone bends when enough pres­sure is ap­plied to it isn’t nec­es­sar­ily a de­sign flaw—it all de­pends on your def­i­ni­tion.

Take the ob­ser­va­tions of Lewis Hilsen­te­ger of Un­box Ther­apy, for in­stance, who per­formed bend tests on the iPhone 6, iPhone 6 Plus, and a num­ber of other alu­minum- and plas­tic-cased smartphones. He found that while the 6 Plus bent sig­nif­i­cantly when he ap­plied pres­sure with two hands, so did other alu­minum­based phones, like the Galaxy Note 4, al­beit to a lesser de­gree. If bend­ing is a con­cern for you, it might be best to opt for the iPhone 6, which bends far less eas­ily than the 6 Plus.

THE VER­DICT

In­evitably, when Ap­ple in­tro­duces new prod­ucts, crit­ics come out of the wood­work to wag their fin­gers at any small flaw they can find. Although the ini­tial public re­ac­tion was tainted by com­plaints of iOS 8 glitches and bend­able iPhones, stel­lar fea­tures—like Extensibility and Con­ti­nu­ity for iOS 8 and a sleeker de­sign and big­ger screen for the iPhones—il­lus­trate that the good far out­weighs the bad in Ap­ple’s lat­est of­fer­ings.

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