21 New Features of iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus, Compare to iPhone 5S

Apple iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus
Apple iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus
Apple iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus

Apple iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus are now official. Besides the bigger phone sizes, what are new about iPhone 6 comparing to iPhone 5S? Read on to learn about all the new iPhone 6 features.

(If not specified, “iPhone 6” in this article is referring to both iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus models)

Hardware & Design

iPhone 6 design
iPhone 6 design
  1. iPhone 6 is powered by latest and fastest Apple 64-bit A8 chip with M8 motion coprocessor for even better performance.
  2. Available in 3 different storage size: 16GB, 64GB and new 128GB. 32GB option is no longer available.

  3. iPhone 6 is Apple’s biggest smartphone ever. iPhone 6 is 4.7″ display and 5.5″ for iPhone 6 Plus. iPhone 6 Plus is also the first iPhone with Full HD resolution (1920×1080 pixels at 401 ppi), or Retina HD as Apple preferred.

4. Dual Domain Pixels for wider viewing angle. Display also has higher contrast ratio.

5.With the larger size, Apple moves the iPhone 6’s power/sleep & wake up button to the right edge as oppose to top side in previous generations.

6.Bigger iPhone 6 now display apps in 4 columns x 6 rows grids. Display Zoom will increase app icon size to display only 5 rows of apps.

Digital Zoom feature (right) found in iPhone 6
Digital Zoom feature (right) for iPhone 6 (pic: onemorething.nl)

7. Reachability allows you to still use bigger iPhone 6 with one hand. It can be activated by double tapping (not double-press) on the Home button (Touch ID sensor). The upper part of the screen will drop down to be reached by your thumb. (GIF)

iPhone 6 Reachability demo
iPhone 6 Reachability demo (pic: geek.com)

8.iPhone 6 supports 20 LTE bands. It will work with almost every LTE networks in the World.

9.Support Voice over LTE (VoLTE) — make calls using 4G data network — provided your telco enable it.

10.iPhone 6 supports NFC for wireless device communication by tapping each other. (Only in U.S.) You can use Apple Pay to make payments using iPhone 6’s NFC and Touch ID.

11.iPhone 6 build-in barometer sensor for measuring atmospheric pressure. It can be used in weather forecasting and determining altitude.

12.Bigger iPhone size comes with bigger battery thus better battery life. iPhone 6 Plus has up to 4 hours more battery life than iPhone 5S. iPhone 6 has up to 2 hours more battery life than iPhone 5S on 3G Internet use.

Cameras and video

iPhone 6 camera
iPhone 6 camera

13.While iPhone 6 back-facing camera is still 8MP resolution, the sensor now feature Focus Pixels for better and faster autofocus.

14.You also take sharper photos using iPhone 6. Thanks to the Optical Image Stabilization (OIS) in iPhone 6 Plus and Auto Image Stabilization (take 4 burst photos then calculate into one sharp photo) of iPhone 6.

15.Able to shoot 1080p HD video at 60 fps, 240 fps slow motion video at 720p, as well as time-lapse video (fast-forwarding-like video clips, opposite of slow motion video).

16.Continuous autofocus video make sure your object is always in focus in your video.

17.Front-facing camera is still 1.2MP (1280×960 pixels) but aperture increase from F/2.4 to F/2.2 — 81% more light capture.

18.Front-facing camera supports selfie “burst mode” to take up to 10 photos per second.

19.iPhone 6 cameras has better face detection. Both front- and back-facing cameras can recognizes faces faster and more accurately, even those farther away or in a crowd.

20.iPhone 6 could take higher resolution panorama photos up to 43 Megapixels.

21.Cinematic video stabilization enable to take steady video shots.

Thoughts

As you seen from the list above, Apple focus a lot on the camera features. Apple has to convince customers that iPhone 6 cameras, while keeping the same pixel count, will produce better photos and videos — same thing HTC is doing for 4MP UltraPixel camera.

Bigger iPhone 6 has better battery life but it is only 2 to 4 hours more than iPhone 5S. You still have to charge the bigger iPhone daily and bring a power bank as backup.

Glad to see iPhone supports NFC, finally. The NFC contactless payment has been around for Android devices sometime but the adoption rate is low. Currently, NFC mostly used for pairing wireless devices, smartphone automation, and NFC tags. Hopefully, iPhone with NFC will boost the adoption of NFC technology.

Without 32GB storage option, you have to buy either 16GB or 64GB. 16GB is not recommended because your apps, photos, and videos will fill up all the storage space in no time. Remember, iPhone 6 does not support external memory card.

You should buy 64GB or 128GB version. The latter is a good news for people who store movies and music collection, and never move photos & videos out of iPhone.

Frankly, iPhone 6 is not innovative. Yes, it is doing what other Android manufacturers already did few years ago. But iPhone customers do not care, they get what they want — bigger screen display, longer battery life, better camera, and a smartphone that will works smoothly out of the box.

What say you? Are you buying iPhone 6? Why?

P.S. Did I miss out any new iPhone 6  feature? Please add in the comment.

Apple Watch (iWatch): Specs, Features, Battery Life, Price

Apple Watch collections
Apple Watch collections
Apple Watch collections

Apple unveiled its first wearable device – Apple Watch – (not iWatch) at the Apple Keynote on September 9, 2014. The smartwatch will be available in early 2015. Is it worth to buy? Let’s check out the design, specs, features and price.

Design

Apple Watch is square shape with rounded corners. The case has no sharp edge, it is smooth and round at every edge.

Apple Watch has a dial, which you found on traditional watch pieces. Apple named it “Digital Crown”. It is used to scroll, zoom and navigate. The dial button also serve as the Home button and easy access to Siri.

Beside the Digital Crown is a side button to bring out list of your favorite contacts.

At the back of Apple Watch, you will find a sensor that uses infrared and LED and photodiodes to detect your heartbeat rate.

Apple Watch collections

Apple Watch is available in 2 different case sizes – 38mm and 42mm – and 6 kind of straps:

Apple Watch straps
Apple Watch straps
  1. Sport band – fluoroelastomer, light and soft, wide chemical resistance
  2. Classic buckle
  3. Milanese loop – flexible magnetic stainless steel mesh
  4. Modern buckle – it closes with a solid metal clasp
  5. Leather loop – soft, quilted leather that conceals magnets for quick fastening and adjustment
  6. Stainless steel link bracelet

Apple Watch has 3 collections – Apple Watch, Apple Watch Sport and Apple Watch edition. Each has different case and straps.

Apple Watch cases and colors
Apple Watch cases and colors

Apple Watch – stainless steel case (polished or space black). Sapphire crystal display. Available in all 6 strap designs.

Apple Watch Sport – aluminum case (space gray or silver). Ion-X glass display. Available in 5 different colors sport band.

Apple Watch Edition – 18K gold case (yellow or rose gold). Sapphire crystal display. Digital Crown dial color is matching with strap color. Available in modern buckle (bright red, rose gray), sport band (white, black) and midnight blue classic buckle.

Apple Watch strap is easily swappable. You can buy extra straps when available.

Specs and Features

The smart watch comes with 11 watch faces with customisable options, such as upcoming events, moon phases, your activity level.

Apple Watch is powered by Apple’s own S1 chipset. For connectivity, Apple Watch supports Wi-Fi 802.11b/g and Bluetooth 4.0 for pairing your iPhone. Inside has a Taptic Engine and build-in speaker allows you to hear and feel alerts and notifications.

Apple Watch’s Retina display features Force Touch that senses the difference between a tap and a press, providing new app access controls.

With GPS data from iPhone, Apple Watch continually checks against global time standard. It will automatically adjusts if you move to other time zones, including auto daylight saving time adjustments.

Charging Apple Watch
Charging Apple Watch

It uses a charging system that combines Apple’s MagSafe technology with inductive charging to snap and charge, free of exposed contacts.

Apple Watch can answer calls to your iPhone and replies message with templates or dictation, plus custom animated emoticons. Digital Touch allows you to send a sketch, tap, audio message, or even your own heartbeat.

With Handoff, you can start a message on Apple Watch then continue typing your message on your iPhone. Swipe up from the watch face will show Glances with apps information like your current location, stocks or your next meeting.

Fitness and Health

Apple Watch's Activity app and Workout app
Apple Watch’s Activity app and Workout app

Apple Watch includes Activity app and Workout app. The smartwatch uses the accelerometer, build-in heart rate sensor, GPS and WiFi from your iPhone to track your daily activity.

Activity app tracks calories burned, brisk activity and your stand up time during the day. Workout app provides goal-setting and pacing during workouts, such as running and cycling.

The Fitness app on iPhone collects your activity data and display in historical chart. Apple Watch will use the his tory to suggest personal realistic goals and reward you on fitness milestones to keep you motivated.

Apple Watch also supports Passbook (boarding passes, tickets, loyalty cards) and Maps’ turn-by-turn navigation. You can use Apple Watch to control music on your iPhone, control Apple TV and iTunes, and double as a remote for iPhone’s camera with live preview. Only in US, you can use Apple Watch to make payment with Apple Pay.

Apple provides WatchKit, a set of new tools and APIs, for developers to create WatchKit apps with actionable notifications and Glances. Native apps for Apple Watch will be available in later 2015.

Battery Life

Generally, smartwatches do not have good battery life, mostly up to 1 day. I would like to have a smartwatch with battery life last for at least a week.

Apple did not mention single word about Apple Watch’s “battery” during keynote and its website. Sources say Apple Watch is “around a day”.  Not good enough, Apple.

Price and Availability

Apple Watch collections (Apple Watch, Apple Watch Sport, Apple Watch Edition) will be available in early 2015. The price is starting at USD$349 (~RM1115). It is compatible with iPhone 5, iPhone 5C, iPhone 5S, iPhone 6 or iPhone 6 Plus running iOS 8.

Thought

Apple Watch is beautiful. With all kind of straps, Apple Watch is a fashion piece you are willing to wear everyday. It looks very much like traditional time pieces with a dial and many elegant watch straps.

People who dislike bulky smartwatch will like the smaller size of Apple Watch. 2 different size Apple Watch also hints that it is a luxury gadget gift for iPhone couple.

Apple Watch functions do not excite me. It does mostly what other smartwatches already doing.

Personally, I do not have the budget to buy a RM1000 smartwatch for myself or my wife. I predict that Apple Watch Edition which crafted from 18K gold will be selling like hot cake in China, and I bet that you will see 18K gold strap for Apple Watch soon. :)

➤ Apple

[LiewCF Buying Guide] iPad Air or iPad Mini 2? Specs and Prices Compared

iPadAir-iPadMini

iPad Air and iPad mini 2

Struggling about buying iPad Air or iPad mini 2? In this article, I compared iPad Air and iPad mini 2 specs and prices and tell you the secret to choose your best iPad.

Compare iPad Air vs. iPad mini 2 specs

For tablet weight, 9.7-inch iPad Air is 138 gram heavier than 7.9-inch iPad mini 2 (331 gram) with the same 7.5mm depth.

100+ gram does not seem heavy but it would make a different when you are holding it for a long time.

Retina display is one of the most requested feature for iPad mini. Now both iPad Air and iPad mini 2 have the same Retina display resolution (2048 x 1536 pixels).

Due to smaller display size, iPad mini 2 has higher pixels per inch (ppi) at 326 than iPad Air (264 ppi). However, you won’t notice the different in their PPI, both are great, trust me.

New A7 64-bit processor is used in both iPad Air and iPad mini 2. It is a great upgrade for iPad mini (A5 to A7) and a step upgrade for iPad (A6X to A7). Every benchmark result shows A7 processor performance is a lot better than previous processors.

Faster processor means shorter battery life, correct? Not in this case. iPad Air and iPad mini 2 still keep the famous 10 hours battery life.

So, should you buy iPad Air or iPad mini 2?

iPad Air and iPad mini 2 specs are same in many ways – both iPads are retina display, same processor, same cameras, same battery life…

The only major different is the display size – 9.7 inch vs. 7.9 inch.

iPad Air’s bigger display is ideal for watching movies with your partner. iPad Air – lightweight & long battery life – could be your ultrabook replacement if you feel comfortable of using iOS productivity apps for work.

For those who prefer a smaller device that can be hold by one hand for a longer time (read news, books, comics, etc), iPad mini 2 is your ideal tablet. It is easier to keep iPad mini 2 too – throw it in any bag and you are ready to go.

Compare iPad Air vs. iPad mini 2 price

iPad Air and iPad mini 2 price compare
iPad Air and iPad mini 2 price compare

iPad Air is RM320 to RM330 more expensive than iPad mini 2. See the table above for iPad Air vs. iPad mini 2 price.

Malaysia iPad Air price

Here is the official Malaysia iPad Air price list:

  • iPad Air WiFi 16GB – RM 1,599
  • iPad Air WiFi 32GB – RM 1,929
  • iPad Air WiFi 64GB – RM 2,249
  • iPad Air WiFi 128GB – RM 2,579
  • iPad Air WiFi+Cellular (4G LTE) 16GB – RM 2,029
  • iPAd Air WiFi+Cellular (4G LTE) 32GB – RM 2,349
  • iPad Air WiFi+Cellular (4G LTE) 64GB – RM 2,679
  • iPad Air WiFi+Cellular (4G LTE) 128GB – RM 2,999

iPad Air is RM150 to RM230 more expensive than iPad Retina’s launch price.

The price different between iPad Air WiFi vs. iPad Air 4G LTE is around RM 420, similar to iPad Retina.

Malaysia iPad mini 2 price

Here is the official Malaysia iPad mini Retina display (iPad mini 2) price list:

  • iPad mini 2 WiFi 16GB – RM 1,279
  • iPad mini 2 WiFi 32GB – RM 1,599
  • iPad mini 2 WiFi 64GB – RM 1,929
  • iPad mini 2 WiFi 128GB – RM 2,249
  • iPad mini 2 WiFi+Cellular (4G LTE) 16GB – RM 1,699
  • iPad mini 2 WiFi+Cellular (4G LTE) 32GB – RM 2,029
  • iPad mini 2 WiFi+Cellular (4G LTE) 64GB – RM 2,349
  • iPad mini 2 WiFi+Cellular (4G LTE) 128GB – RM 2,679

iPad mini 2 WiFi 16GB is RM330 more expensive than iPad mini WiFi 16GB. The latter is the only iPad mini 1st generation model available now on Apple Store Malaysia.

Cheapest iPads in the World!

Though iPad Air and iPad mini 2 are both more expensive than previous generation, but Malaysia’s new iPads are one of the cheapest in the world! The price is matching to the Apple USA price!

Availability in Malaysia

iPad Air and iPad mini Retina Display (iPad mini 2) are available without contract at all local Apple resellers, such as Machines, Mac City, Switch and SenQ.

Local telcos – Maxis, DiGi, Celcom – are also offer iPad Air WiFi+4G and iPad mini 2 WiFi+4G with data plan contracts.

Thought

In a nutshell, it really depends on your personal usage and preference. Would you prefer a bigger or smaller tablet?

Instead of struggling in front your computer, why don’t you visit nearest Apple resellers and try both iPad Air and iPad mini 2 to find out which one you like most?

No matter you buy iPad Air and iPad mini 2, they are good for the next few years – thanks to 64-bit processor, good build, iOS updates, and good battery life.

You won’t be wrong buying either one. However, you are advised to buy at least 32GB model. 16GB won’t be enough for your many iPad apps, photos and videos.

So, are you iPad Air or iPad mini 2?

You Can Now Buy iPhone 5S Gold on Malaysia Apple Store

Buy iPhone 5S Gold on Malaysia Apple Store

[Tweet “You can now buy Malaysia iPhone 5S GOLD (and other 5S & 5C models) at Apple Online Store”]

Malaysia Apple Store iPhone 5S 5C

Apple iPhone 5S and iPhone 5C was officially released in Malaysia on 31st October 2013. Though Apple Malaysia online store listed the new iPhone models online a week before official launch date, they are not immediately available for online purchase at 12 midnight like the local telcos.

As far as I noticed, Apple Malaysia store start accepting online order in the early morning on 1st November 2013.

Now you can buy iPhone 5S and iPhone 5C online at Malaysia Apple Store with free shipping. Yes, you can buy iPhone 5S GOLD online.

Buy iPhone 5S Gold on Malaysia Apple Store
Buy iPhone 5S Gold on Malaysia Apple Store

However, iPhone 5S shipping time is 2–3 weeks (read: out of stock). iPhone 5C, on the other hand, will be shipped in 1–3 business days.

Again, here is the official iPhone 5S and 5C prices:

  • iPhone 5S 16GB – RM 2,399
  • iPhone 5S 32GB – RM 2,749
  • iPhone 5S 64GB – RM 3,149
  • iPhone 5C 16GB – RM 1,999
  • iPhone 5C 32Gb – RM 2,399

Would you buy iPhone on Apple Store? Or, you prefer to buy from local Apple reseller?

Here’s the Official Malaysia iPhone 5S and iPhone 5C Price List

iPhone 5S and iPhone 5C all colors
iPhone 5S and iPhone 5C all colors
iPhone 5S and iPhone 5C all colors

Malaysia iPhone 5S and iPhone 5C retail prices have been revealed by Apple online store, a week before official launch.

It is unusual that Apple Malaysia reveal the retail price for iPhone 5S and 5C before the launch date - Oct 31, 2013.

For the past years, the iPhone price only revealed on the day of telco’s iPhone launch. This year, Malaysia iPhone prices are revealed 1 week before launch date, just after the Apple special event on 22nd Oct!

What a surprise!

[Tweet “Malaysia iPhone 5S and  5C prices revealed by Apple Malaysia before official launch date.”]

Malaysia iPhone 5S price

Malaysia iPhone 5S price
Malaysia iPhone 5S price
  • iPhone 5S 16GB – RM 2,399
  • iPhone 5S 32GB – RM 2,749
  • iPhone 5S 64GB – RM 3,149

Malaysia iPhone 5C price

Malaysia iPhone 5C price
Malaysia iPhone 5C price
  • iPhone 5C 16GB – RM 1,999
  • iPhone 5C 32Gb – RM 2,399

Both iPhone models are not available for online purchase yet. Malaysia telcos – Maxis, Celcom, DiGi – already start registration of interest for iPhone 5S and 5c.

This year Malaysians have to pay more for new iPhones. The prices are few hundreds more expensive than my previous price guess, which are also last year’s iPhone 5 prices. Anyway, Malaysians still enjoy cheaper iPhone price than our Singapore friends. :)

What do you think about the iPhone 5S and 5C prices in Malaysia? Expensive? Expected? Does it change your buying decision? Take the poll below:

Thanks Chris Wong for hat tip.