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Review iPhone 6 Plus at Two Months

Discussion in 'APPLE iPhone, iPad Tablets and all iOS Devices' started by M in LA, Jul 16, 2015.

  1. M in LA

    M in LA Mobile 25 Years Plus
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    Last May, as the battery in my old HTC Droid DNA was draining precipitously and the fact that it can't be replaced, it was time to upgrade. The DNA was used for the better part of 26 months. I debated whether to go with an iPhone or stick with Android via the Samsung Galaxy Note 4 or LG G3.

    I was most concerned about losing access to an awesome app on Android that blocks unwanted calls (Call Control). I paid for the app and it worked well. Apple does not allow call-blocking apps via its native ecosystem (unless one jailbreaks the phone). I thought this might be a deal-breaker for getting the iPhone.

    I decided to try the iPhone anyway. If all else failed, I would come back to Android via the Note 4 if the iPhone didn't work out. The other reason for getting the it had to do with it being an iPod Classic replacement. I have a 70GB+ iTunes collection and no current iPod had the capacity to hold my entire collection, save for the 128GB iPhone 6 Plus. I also wanted a phone bigger than the 5.0-inch screen DNA.

    Pros:
    • Phenomenal screen resolution and clarity
    • Ease of use
    • Intuitive software/Clean UI
    • Organized and clean app setup and functionality
    • iTunes music and app integration
    • 128GB native capacity
    • Extensive and detailed settings options and tighter control over app permissions
    • App selection
    • Native ability to turn on camera flash for notifications (via the Accessibility options)
    • Native ringtone selection
    • Basic customization
    • Incredible battery life
    • Smooth UI transition between apps/calls/notifications/screens, etc.
    • Excellent fingerprint scanner
    • Silent switch on side
    • Quicker charging (versus Droid DNA)
    • Remarkably less, if any, Wi-Fi battery drain (versus the DNA)
    • Native flashlight
    • Siri (especially the option for either male or female voice)
    • iMessage
    • Speaker at bottom of device (versus the back on the DNA)
    • Simplified settings (versus the DNA)
    • 5.5 inch screen
    • Easy transition from Android
    Cons:
    • Price
    • Marginal Lightning charger cord
    • Inability to remove some unused Apple apps
    • Lack of call blocking apps (unlike Android)
    • Non-removable battery (like the DNA)
    • Easily breakable screen glass (versus the gorilla glass on the DNA)
    • Having to go through iTunes to add ringtones (via Zedge)
    So far, I am really loving the phone. I don't regret getting it at all, even at the ridiculous price being charged for it. It was inexpensive to find a pouch case and protective shell cover for the phone, along with a tempered glass screen protector. The battery life is by far the best part of the phone.

    I am still VERY much a fan of Android (especially the Note 4 phone and the upcoming Note 5). For me, though, iOS is much cleaner, easier, less cluttered, and more intuitive than Android. I thought I would miss screen widgets with iOS, but I've found I don't. I love both iOS and Android, I just prefer iOS more now. It really is someone's personal preference which phone OS works better for them. I was surprised how much I came to enjoy and prefer iOS. If the need for a second mobile phone arises, Android it will be (on one of the Note phones).

    As for the call blocking issue, I found an excellent work-around. I have all my VM's forwarded to Google Voice (which has an excellent call blocking option), save a particular ringtone for every contact in my phone and found a silent ringtone through Zedge that is the default "ringer". I never hear the phone ring for any caller not in my contacts. So far it is working like a charm.
     
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  2. JFB

    JFB Gold Senior Member
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    Excellent write-up on your transition - thanks! :wideyed:

    By the way, I hear those iPod classics are still valuable and there are places you can get the internal drive swapped out for a high capacity SSD.
     
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  3. viewfly

    viewfly Mobile RF Advisor
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    Very happy that you enjoy the new iPhone. Nice write up too.

    Unless I misunderstand you, there has been a native call, text blocker in iOS for some time. Select the offending call (say from recent calls list), by the 'I' icon on the right. ( or scroll to the bottom of your contact list).

    Select Block Caller. You will see the pop up confirmation screen. Blocks calls from any number, not just iPhones.

    No third party app, but native iOS. Is this what you want? I use it for SMS and calls.

    There also is a block call list in settings that you can review and manage.

    PS. Been available since iOS 7. Manage each list under Settings: phone or Messages. Here is an article from 2013. A bit dated, but you get the idea.

    http://m.imore.com/how-remove-someone-your-block-list-ios-7

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]





    Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk
     
    #3 viewfly, Jul 17, 2015
    Last edited: Jul 17, 2015
  4. M in LA

    M in LA Mobile 25 Years Plus
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    viewfly, I forgot to mention I am aware of the basic call blocking option on iOS. I use it and it has worked out well for me. What Call Control does on Android is block blocked callers from ringing the phone at all (though there is an option in the app to see all the blocked calls). I thought this might be an issue because of the amount of calls I was receiving at the time, but with the silent ringtone for non-contact calls, I never hear the phone ring and when I see a number I don't recognize, I block it via the iOS option you showed, then go to Google Voice to completely block them further from calling me again.

    It ended up being an unfounded worry about the iPhone. Once I got the phone and used it, it became very clear my call-blocking concern was unmerited and certainly was not going to become the deal-breaker I originally was concerned it would be.
     
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  5. viewfly

    viewfly Mobile RF Advisor
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    Maybe try Do Not Disturb and allow only your contact list. To prevent calls outside your contacts.

    Once blocked with iOS, a blocked call in iOS should never ring your phone.

    This works for me. However you have a workable solution too.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
     
    #5 viewfly, Jul 17, 2015
    Last edited: Jul 17, 2015
  6. M in LA

    M in LA Mobile 25 Years Plus
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    There's one small hitch with Do Not Disturb. Initially, when I got the phone, I had it on DND all the time, until I realized calls from contacts come through with sound, but texts, emails, and other notifications do not. I wasn't a happy camper. But I wasn't going to let it be the deal-breaker. This is when I came up with the default silent ringtone option.

    As mentioned before, I set up specific ringtones for everyone in my contacts list so their calls will come through. I then never hear unknown callers and decide after I see the missed call whether to permanently block them.

    I only give my number out to family and close friends (my Google Voice number is what I give out to everyone else). In the 21 years I've had my cell number, I've rarely gotten wrong numbers, but over the last year spam/junk calls started coming in. Which is where the Android app came in very handy, until I switched to the iPhone.

    I should mention that I use the Google Voice app (with the assigned number) all the time. The iOS version is slightly different than the Android one, but it works like a charm and I'm happy with the overall call management setup I have now.

    The only thing I wish Apple would do for DND is offer the option of receiving texts and other non-call notifications from contacts. By default, I feel DND should be as it is, as I'd rather turn on the option I mentioned rather than it being on by default, as DND is supposed be what its title implies.
     
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  7. viewfly

    viewfly Mobile RF Advisor
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    Ah, I did not realize that DND worked that way. I thought it allowed everything through.

    iOS blocked call, messaging seems to work as I expected...I never here a ringtone. What does the blocked caller hear? Are they dumped to voicemail?


    Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk
     
  8. palandri

    palandri Former Palm Guy

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    Very nice review! (y)

    Talking about Junk/Spam calls, they are suppose to be cracking down on them, but I've had an increase of Junk/Spam calls over the past couple of years. If I don't recognize the number, I don't answer the call. Two are robo calls; one is a lady speaking Spanish and the other is a home security company. I can't block their calls because they use a different dummy number each time they call. Then to top it off, I got rid of DirecTV two years ago, but they have given my phone number to I think every telemarketing company in the U.S., calling me to sign me back up with DirecTV.
     
    #8 palandri, Jul 18, 2015
    Last edited: Jul 18, 2015
  9. M in LA

    M in LA Mobile 25 Years Plus
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    Yes, iOS blocked callers go right to VM if they call and their texts never come through. And with GV, if you block them their as well, instead of hearing the VM announcement, they hear a recording saying your number is out of service. Also, it puts these calls in the spam folder, so your inbox stays clean and unless you check the spam folder, you'd never know they called.
     
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  10. viewfly

    viewfly Mobile RF Advisor
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    Yes, I played around with iOS native call blocker yesterday, and it goes straight to voice mail. It was inconsistent whether I'd see an 'Unknown' VM afterwards or not, for reasons I don't understand.

    Fortunately, I rarely get unwanted calls, although it has been increasing since last year. I've had GV for years, but rarely have a need to use it.

    Again, M in LA, nice comprehensive review. With the increased size in screen, it seems iPhone 6 series to have hit the sweet spot with many users (and the smooth, easy iOS, which has added more requested features over time).

    One minor comment though: Corning has been the provider of the iPhone's cover glass since the beginning (2007), and through the iPhone 6. So it is the same rebranded 'Gorilla' glass as the DNA. The confusion surrounds where and who 'makes' the glass. 'Making' meaning the same as machining/shaping a metal part by Company A, however the metal material is provided by another Company B.The cutting and forming is done by companies in Asia, with the glass provided by Corning. Actually that was 'the' secret with bringing that 1950's Corning glass onto smartphones 2007:how to precisely cut and fit the glass was the innovation. Although both Apple and Corning will not deny nor confirm (buy freely hint), it is common knowledge in the industry.

    How it is formed and fitted (unprotected curved glass sides that take a direct hit) mark whether it might break more easily than another design.

    Another comment I'll make, is that a scratch on Gorilla (or sapphire), and any glass will severely lower its breaking point. That was Apple's main interest in sapphire, even though it is more brittle than glass...it has a higher scratch resistance. But as people are seeing with the higher end Apple watches, with their tough sapphire faces, there is more surface light reflections too. That, cost and GT's failure caused Apple to revert back to ion-strengthened, Gorilla glass. (Forbes)

    Enjoy your iPhone
     
  11. M in LA

    M in LA Mobile 25 Years Plus
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    Thank you for the information. I was not aware of that. I had read that because of the way the glass on the 6 Plus fits (from its design), that a drop on one of the corners could shatter the screen. With a phone this expensive, I did not want to take ANY chance. I have dropped the DNA a few times without any problem. I would baby the iPhone more because of the expense of it and I am VERY careful with it around hard or wooden floors and when I go out to my car. I love the phone and don't want to deal with a broken screen. Fortunately, the tempered glass protector screen will help considerably if I accidentally drop the phone. I will do whatever I need to to keep the phone safe for the two years I plan to use it. Thanks again for all your help, suggestions, and review compliments. It's greatly appreciated.
     
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  12. viewfly

    viewfly Mobile RF Advisor
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    You're welcome. I drop my naked iPhone 6 from the car seat into my garage cement. Bounce at least twice and slid 4-5 feet. Survived with only scratches in the metal corners. I have AppleCare and my home Insurance too.


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  13. M in LA

    M in LA Mobile 25 Years Plus
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    After I saw your post, I looked it up. It's possible to replaced the battery and the hard drive and have a brand new iPod. It's something I may consider down the road. Thanks for the info, Joe!
     
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  14. charlyee

    charlyee Ultimate Insanity
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    Great write up, glad you are enjoying it.

    I am not sure what you mean by "basic customization" in the pros and also the "marginal lightning charger cord" in the cons. Can you please explain.

    Thanks much :)



    Sent from my iPhone 6 using Tapatalk
     
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  15. M in LA

    M in LA Mobile 25 Years Plus
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    What I call "basic customization" is arranging apps the way I want, including grouping some apps together for ease of access. It also includes Settings, like adjusting app permissions and background activity. Adding the battery percentage, turning on the camera flash for notifications and setting up certain apps to function the way I need/want them to be, along with the ringtones and alerts selection. There are more options I could mention, but these are the big ones that matter to me most. I found it easier to setup the iPhone than the DNA. Overall, I like the way iOS functions more than Android. No one is more surprised at this than me.

    As far as the "marginal lightning charger cord". It is flimsy and cheap. I am being very careful with mine as not to wear it out. I expect more from Apple than a cord that will break relatively easy. The reviews for the native Apple Lightning charger (on their site) were terrible. I was surprised how low-rated they were, with people complaining about the cord breaking/coming apart or not charging within a few months. Trying to find an inexpensive replacement cord has been frustrating (via Amazon). For a phone as expensive as the iPhone 6 Plus, I expected/hoped for a better quality Lightning charging cable.
     
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  16. viewfly

    viewfly Mobile RF Advisor
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    That is really not my experience at all. I still have working cables from my 3G!

    My lighting cables are good too. The one in my car is a bit beat up (2years old now) but it's gets stepped on regularly.

    Now other family members cables are a different story. But I see them get pulled by the cord and not the plastic part. Or tied into a knot or doubled over at the lighting side. My dad always told me to never pull by the cable! It puts stress at the plastic cord junction.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
     
  17. charlyee

    charlyee Ultimate Insanity
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    I had to replace the charging cable for my iPhone 5 after about 9 months. The lightning cable for the iPad Air was fine after a year of use and the ones for the iPad Air 2 and the iPhone 6 are fine at 9 months of usage.


    Sent from my iPhone 6 using Tapatalk
     
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