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Betting big on big: Apple announce two new iPhones with bigger displays

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Apple has finally announced its latest iPhones and one of the world’s most successful technology company is betting on big displays to return to dominance in the smartphone market.

The newly introduced iPhones — the relatively large iPhone 6 and, larger still, iPhone 6 Plus — will come in two sizes, both will be significantly larger that their predecessor, the 4-inch iPhone 5S.

The iPhone 6 features a 4.7-inch 720p (1334×750 pixels, 326ppi) LCD IPS display while the iPhone 6 Plus gets a 5.5-inch 1080p (1920×1080 pixels, 401ppi) display and that seems to be the biggest differences between the two models. Under the hood is a new A8 64-bit processor running at an unspecified clock speed and RAM configuration. Apple claims the new A8 processor is 25% faster than the A7 in the iPhone 5S and offers a 50% improvement in graphics performance. The new chips also has a new motion engine that is coupled with a barometer to allow the new iPhones to accurately detect motion and distinguish between running and cycling. The barometer can also detect changes in elevation allowing it to detect when you’re climbing up stairs, which is cool but not really a big deal in day-to-day use.

To make the most out of the increased screen space Apple has introduced a few new features in iOS. For the first time ever, you get support for landscape mode and split display in certain apps like stocks and email but this feature is only available on the iPhone 6 Plus. The keyboard has been tweaked to take advantage of the display area, too, with additional buttons and features. To accommodate for the larger screen, there’s also a new gesture called “Reachability”, where double tap the home button to collapse the display allowing your fingers to reach things at the top of the display without having to readjust your hand.

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In the imaging department, the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus both get essentially the same camera, an 8MP BSI camera with a f/2.2 lens at the back, but the 6 Plus gets a superior optical image stabilisation while the iPhone 6 uses digital image stabilisation. The rear camera for both phones can now shoot 1080p video at up to 60 fps and slow-mo videos at up to 240 fps. At the front, the 1.2MP FaceTime camera remains pretty much unchanged save for a faster f/2.2 lens versus the f/2.4 lens in the iPhone 5S.

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It terms of design the new iPhones appears to echo the iPad Air and iPad mini closely, sharing a similar texture on its metal body and the same rounded edges and over-sized speaker holes. The front glass now curves around the sides of the phone to complement the body and is “ion strengthened” to make it tougher, according to Apple. Because of the extra girth and height, the power button on both iPhones have been moved to the side to make it easier to reach.

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For connectivity, both iPhones get cat4 LTE (download up to 150Mbps) with support for up to 20 LTE bands across 200 networks around the world. This is the widest LTE compatibility of any iPhone to date. There’s also support for VoLTE and 802.11ac. In addition, you also get NFC and with it, a new mobile payment service called Apple Pay which we will discuss in a separate post. Suffice to say for now that Apple is looking to replace your credit cards with its smartphone and wearables.

The iPhone 6 and 6 Plus will be available in three colors, gold, silver, and space grey, and will be in stores at selected markets from September 19, with preorders starting on September 12. As usual, Malaysia is not on the list of first countries to get the new iPhones but Apple says that its latest and greatest will come to 114 countries by the end of the year, many will be hoping that Malaysia will be one of those countries.

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So what do we think of the iPhone 6? Apple say the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus are the best phones they’ve ever made, and in the Apple universe, this is true but beyond that does the claim hold true? Well, it’s still early days for us to say anything definitive but it looks like Apple has done just enough to get fans excited. Will it entice new users? With the Apple Watch, maybe but with a more discerning users and a busy marketplace crowded with capable competitors, it’s tough to see the new iPhones bring Apple back to the top.

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iPhone 6 / iPhone 6 Plus Official Videos

iPhone 6 / iPhone 6 Plus Images

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