The iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus are smartphones designed and marketed by Apple Inc. The devices are part of the iPhone series and were announced on September 9, 2014, and released on September 19, 2014. The iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus jointly serve as successors to the iPhone 5S and were themselves replaced as flagship devices of the iPhone series by the iPhone 6S and iPhone 6S Plus on September 9, 2015.
The iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus include larger 4.7 and 5.5 inches (120 and 140 mm) displays, a faster processor, upgraded cameras, improved LTE and Wi-Fi connectivity and support for a near field communications-based mobile payments offering.
The iPhone 6 and 6 Plus received positive reviews, with critics regarding their improved design, specifications, camera, and battery life as being improvements over previous iPhone models. However, aspects of the design of iPhone 6 were also panned, including plastic strips on the rear of the device for its antenna that disrupted the otherwise metal exterior, and the screen resolution of the standard-sized iPhone 6 being lower than other devices in its class. Pre-orders of the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus exceeded four million within its first 24 hours of availability—an Apple record. More than ten million iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus devices were sold in the first three days, another Apple record.
Despite their positive reception, the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus have been the subject of several hardware issues, including most prominently, being susceptible to bending under pressure (a design flaw nicknamed “Bendgate”), and as a byproduct of this lack of rigidity, the touchscreen’s internal hardware being susceptible to losing its connection to the phone’s logic board (nicknamed “Touch Disease”). The iPhone 6 Plus was also the subject of camera issues, including some devices with malfunctioning optical image stabilization or otherwise defects on rear cameras.
The iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus were moved to the midrange spot in Apple’s iPhone lineup when the iPhone 6S and 6S Plus were released in September 2015. The iPhone 6 and 6 Plus were discontinued in most countries on September 7, 2016 when Apple announced the iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus. Their spot as the entry-level iPhone was replaced by the iPhone SE, which was released earlier on March 31, 2016.
The design of the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus are influenced by that of the iPad Air with a glass front that is curved around the edges of the display, and an aluminum rear that contains two plastic strips for the antenna. Both models come in gold, silver, and “space gray” finishes. The iPhone 6 has a thickness of 6.9 millimetres (0.27 in), while the iPhone 6 Plus is 7.1 mm (0.28 in) in thickness; both are thinner than the iPhone 5c and iPhone 5s, with the iPhone 6 being Apple’s thinnest phone to date. The most significant changes to the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus are its displays; both branded as “Retina HD Display” and “ion-strengthened”, the iPhone 6 display is 4.7 inches in size with a 16:9 resolution of 1334×750 (326 ppi, minus one row of pixels), while the iPhone 6 Plus includes a 5.5-inch 1920×1080 (1080p) display (401 PPI). The displays use a multiple-domain LCD panel, dubbed “dual-domain pixels”; the RGB pixels themselves are skewed in pattern, so that every pixel is seen from a different angle. This technique helps improve the viewing angles of the display.
To accommodate the larger physical size of the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus, the power button was moved to the side of the phone instead of the top to improve its accessibility. The iPhone 6 features a 6.91 Wh (1810 mAh) battery, while the iPhone 6 Plus features an 11.1 Wh (2915 mAh) battery. Unlike the previous model, the rear-facing camera is not flush with the rear of the device, and has a slight “bulge” around the lens.
Both models include an Apple A8 system-on-chip, and an M8 motion co-processor—an update of the M7 chip from the iPhone 5s. The primary difference between the M8 and the original M7 coprocessor is that the M8 also includes a barometer to measure altitude changes. Phil Schiller touted that the A8 chip would provide, in comparison to the 5s, a 25% increase in CPU performance, a 50% increase in graphics performance, and less heat output. Early hands-on reports suggested that the A8’s GPU performance might indeed break away from previous generations doubling of performance at each yearly release, scoring 21204.26 in Base mark X compared to 20253.80, 10973.36 and 5034.75 on respectively the 5s, 5 and 4s.
The expanded LTE connectivity on the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus is improved to LTE Advanced, with support for over 20 LTE bands (7 more than the iPhone 5s), for up to 150 Mbit/s download speed, and VoLTE support. Wi-Fi performance has been improved with support for 802.11ac specifications, providing speeds up to 433.0581 Mbit/s—which is up to 3 times faster than 802.11n, along with Wi-Fi Calling support where available. The iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus add support for near-field communications (NFC), which is used exclusively for Apple Pay—a new mobile payments system which will allow users to store their credit cards in Passbook for use with online payments and retail purchases over NFC. NFC support is restricted to Apple Pay only, and cannot be used for any other purposes (such as sharing content with other iPhone users).
The iPhone 6’s rear-facing camera now has the ability to shoot 1080p video at either 30 or 60 frames per second and slow-motion video at either 120 or 240 frames per second. The camera also includes phase detection autofocus. It can also record . The iPhone 6 Plus camera is nearly identical, but also includes optical image stabilization. The front-facing camera was also updated with a new sensor and f/2.2 aperture, along with support for burst and HDR modes.
When first released, the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus were supplied pre-loaded with iOS 8, while the iPhone 5S was supplied pre-loaded with iOS 7. Apps are able to take advantage of the increased screen size in the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus to display more information on-screen; for example, the Mail app uses a dual-pane layout similar to its iPad version when the device is in landscape mode on the iPhone 6 Plus. As it uses an identical aspect ratio, apps designed for the iPhone 5, iPhone 5C, and 5S can be upscaled for use on the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus. To improve the usability of the devices’ larger screens, an additional “Reachability” gesture was added; double-tapping the Home button will slide the top half of the screen’s contents down to the bottom half of the screen. This function allows users to reach buttons located near the top of the screen, such as a “Back” button in the top-left corner.