I owned an iPhone 6 Plus for a short period this week. It’s a stunning device - certainly polarising, and an incredible feat of design. I returned it about 24 hours later for an iPhone 6 (which I have no regrets about) as the device isn’t for me. That’s not to say it’s not the perfect device for you, but I couldn’t adapt and found it simply didn’t fit my needs.
In my 24 hours with the device, a few of things struck me:
- It’s definitely a new class of device - as big a change for the iPhone as the iPad was.
- The possibilities for software are exciting, particularly given the blurring between iPhone and iPad apps I discussed last night. The 6 Plus sits firmly in the middle here, which will be fun to watch.
- I loved the landscape dock (and wish this fluidity in Springboard were on the iPhone 6 also).
- The 6 Plus surprisingly felt more like an iPad than an iPhone.
- Despite feeling like an iPad more than an iPhone, the software is still iPhone-driven. In landscape mode, the Photos.app deletion confirmation felt odd being in a UIActionSheet instead of a Popover (as the iPad does it) and again in the Photos app, the deletion-confirmation UIActionSheet’s locality to the Delete button felt like a stretch despite having both hands holding the device.
All in, I’m glad I bought and tried the 6 Plus - and I’m excited to see how the device develops. More than anything, I’m interested in what the form-factor enables: landscape mode finally becomes useful, with a considerable amount more space on-screen with the keyboard up; iPad-like split-views mean that folks who live from their phones can navigate more easily; and above all I’m excited to see what happens to the 6 Plus software in the future. Right now it feels awkwardly stuck between the iPhone and iPad, uncertain which idiom to follow - and as iOS 8.x and beyond appear, I wouldn’t be surprised if it finds more of its own voice instead of simply being a big (though admittedly very beautiful) iPhone.