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After owning the iPhone 6 for 24 hours…
I love it. The shape is reminiscent of the original from back in 2007, which I regard as a design classic. The silk-finish aluminium is luxurious to the touch, and the curved screen polishes away any hard edges. It feels superb in the hand.
It’s big. A leather case makes it a little bigger. This is at about the limit for what I’m comfortable using one-handed. It also pushes the boundaries of decency when crammed into a jeans front pocket. On all these fronts, the Plus would be a step too far.
The screen itself is as vibrant and clear as you’d expect from an apple device.
Filming slo-mo never gets old.
The novelty of touch-ID wears off fairly quickly
The new power button location is going to take some getting used to.
Full-fat 4G is amazing, and I’m not sure how I lived without it for so long. 
Battery life is better than the iPhone 5, but it’s not significant enough to hold parades over. I’m still going to need a battery extender for those long days in convention halls.
Metal-enabled apps like Ashpalt 8 and Epic Zen Garden are a little disappointing. I’m not sure if the screen clarity is helping to highlight limitations with the on-die GPU, but I was hoping for more. That said, we’re starting to get Vita-quality gaming here, and left Nintendo behind a long time ago. It just needs games that cut through the crap in the App Store.
Is it worth the upgrade? If you have a 4S or earlier, definitely. If you have a 5 (like I had) then probably. If you have a 5S or 5C it’s probably not, unless you’re desperate for the latest thing. 
Zoom Info
Camera
Olympus E-PL5
ISO
200
Aperture
f/4
Exposure
1/125th
Focal Length
18mm

After owning the iPhone 6 for 24 hours…

  • I love it. The shape is reminiscent of the original from back in 2007, which I regard as a design classic. The silk-finish aluminium is luxurious to the touch, and the curved screen polishes away any hard edges. It feels superb in the hand.
  • It’s big. A leather case makes it a little bigger. This is at about the limit for what I’m comfortable using one-handed. It also pushes the boundaries of decency when crammed into a jeans front pocket. On all these fronts, the Plus would be a step too far.
  • The screen itself is as vibrant and clear as you’d expect from an apple device.
  • Filming slo-mo never gets old.
  • The novelty of touch-ID wears off fairly quickly
  • The new power button location is going to take some getting used to.
  • Full-fat 4G is amazing, and I’m not sure how I lived without it for so long. 
  • Battery life is better than the iPhone 5, but it’s not significant enough to hold parades over. I’m still going to need a battery extender for those long days in convention halls.
  • Metal-enabled apps like Ashpalt 8 and Epic Zen Garden are a little disappointing. I’m not sure if the screen clarity is helping to highlight limitations with the on-die GPU, but I was hoping for more. That said, we’re starting to get Vita-quality gaming here, and left Nintendo behind a long time ago. It just needs games that cut through the crap in the App Store.

Is it worth the upgrade? If you have a 4S or earlier, definitely. If you have a 5 (like I had) then probably. If you have a 5S or 5C it’s probably not, unless you’re desperate for the latest thing. 

Real-World Network Testing for the iPhone 6
Yes, I’m getting the iPhone 6. As I write this, the UPS truck is hurtling towards me, my latest gadget safely stowed. But I’m also taking the opportunity to re-evaluate my network of choice. You see, after spending the last ten years with O2, I’m fast coming to the conclusion that it’s time to move on.
But I’m also paranoid about being locked into a contact with a network that’s no good for me. All four have impressive coverage maps, but these are based on mathematical models rather than accurate measurements. As a result, the only way I can be sure is to try them out for myself in scenarios that I commonly experience.
As a result, I picked up four prepay nano SIMs, one for each of the major networks. I also bought a bundle for each (usually £10) that included enough voice minutes and inclusive data to carry out a reasonable amount of testing.
Using my unlocked iPhone 5 as a common test device, I then tried each SIM on my morning and evening commute. It’s roughly a 100 mile round trip through some major towns and patchy countryside coverage, and I was eager to find out just how far each network managed to penetrate these dead spots. When the iPhone 6 arrives, I’ll be performing these tests again. 
During each train journey, I’d use the phone as I would normally - catch up on social networks, read articles on the web, and silently curse when I’d get knocked down to 2G. I’d also note how good the phone was at recovering to 3G, which has been a problem with my current network of late.
At each of my base locations, I’d also run a series of 3G speed tests. 4G is also available in some locations but, since the iPhone 5 only works on two of the four networks in that mode, it’s a bit of an unfair comparison - the complete picture will have to wait for the iPhone 6.
The Results So Far
My commute test rapidly managed to eliminate one contender - Three. As the youngest of the three networks, it’s no surprise that it would struggle in some of the more remote areas. O2 and Vodafone were pretty much a tie, but EE managed to surprise me with more blanket coverage than I’ve experienced elsewhere. This shouldn’t be a surprise either, as the business was formed through the merger of Orange and T-Mobile, with the two networks combining as a result.
Additionally, EE seemed to perform the best in 3G speed tests in all the locations I tested. My hunch is that it’s because their heavier data traffic has been offloaded to 4G, lightening the load on the older network.
That said, I’m going to need to do further testing, including side-by-side testing, once the new iPhone arrives
Cost
I use about 1GB of data every month, so I’d be looking for a data cap with double that to provide ample headroom if I need it. Voice call minutes and messaging allowance are much less of a concern.
All networks offer sim only deals, with a discount applied if I sign up for 12 months rather than a 30-day rolling agreement.
30 Day Deals
O2, unlimited calls and texts, 2GB Data, 4G Ready, £22
Vodafone, unlimited calls and texts, 1GB Data, 3G Only, £19.20
EE, unlimited calls and texts, 2GB Data, 4G Ready, £18.99
Three, unlimited calls and texts, 4GB Data, 4G Ready, £21
12 Month Deals
O2, unlimited calls and texts, 2GB Data, 4G Ready, £20
Vodafone, unlimited calls and texts, 1GB Data, 4G Ready, £16.50
EE, unlimited calls and texts, 2GB Data, 4G Ready, £15.99
Three, unlimited calls and texts, 4GB Data, 4G Ready, £18
Both EE and Vodafone offer 4G coverage at my home, whereas the other two networks do not. Additionally, EE has the most extensive 4G network in the UK at present.
This currently pegs EE as the cheapest provider for what I’m after.
Conclusions
At this early stage, I’m leaning towards EE as my next provider, based on a mix of coverage and cost. That said, my research hasn’t yet factored in the customer service quality of each network, any added value perks they offer, or the capability of their companion apps. At this stage, although a winner is emerging, my investigations will continue.
Zoom Info
Camera
Olympus E-PL5
ISO
1600
Aperture
f/2.8
Exposure
1/25th
Focal Length
18mm

Real-World Network Testing for the iPhone 6

Yes, I’m getting the iPhone 6. As I write this, the UPS truck is hurtling towards me, my latest gadget safely stowed. But I’m also taking the opportunity to re-evaluate my network of choice. You see, after spending the last ten years with O2, I’m fast coming to the conclusion that it’s time to move on.

But I’m also paranoid about being locked into a contact with a network that’s no good for me. All four have impressive coverage maps, but these are based on mathematical models rather than accurate measurements. As a result, the only way I can be sure is to try them out for myself in scenarios that I commonly experience.

As a result, I picked up four prepay nano SIMs, one for each of the major networks. I also bought a bundle for each (usually £10) that included enough voice minutes and inclusive data to carry out a reasonable amount of testing.

Using my unlocked iPhone 5 as a common test device, I then tried each SIM on my morning and evening commute. It’s roughly a 100 mile round trip through some major towns and patchy countryside coverage, and I was eager to find out just how far each network managed to penetrate these dead spots. When the iPhone 6 arrives, I’ll be performing these tests again. 

During each train journey, I’d use the phone as I would normally - catch up on social networks, read articles on the web, and silently curse when I’d get knocked down to 2G. I’d also note how good the phone was at recovering to 3G, which has been a problem with my current network of late.

At each of my base locations, I’d also run a series of 3G speed tests. 4G is also available in some locations but, since the iPhone 5 only works on two of the four networks in that mode, it’s a bit of an unfair comparison - the complete picture will have to wait for the iPhone 6.

The Results So Far

My commute test rapidly managed to eliminate one contender - Three. As the youngest of the three networks, it’s no surprise that it would struggle in some of the more remote areas. O2 and Vodafone were pretty much a tie, but EE managed to surprise me with more blanket coverage than I’ve experienced elsewhere. This shouldn’t be a surprise either, as the business was formed through the merger of Orange and T-Mobile, with the two networks combining as a result.

Additionally, EE seemed to perform the best in 3G speed tests in all the locations I tested. My hunch is that it’s because their heavier data traffic has been offloaded to 4G, lightening the load on the older network.

That said, I’m going to need to do further testing, including side-by-side testing, once the new iPhone arrives

Cost

I use about 1GB of data every month, so I’d be looking for a data cap with double that to provide ample headroom if I need it. Voice call minutes and messaging allowance are much less of a concern.

All networks offer sim only deals, with a discount applied if I sign up for 12 months rather than a 30-day rolling agreement.

30 Day Deals

  • O2, unlimited calls and texts, 2GB Data, 4G Ready, £22
  • Vodafone, unlimited calls and texts, 1GB Data, 3G Only, £19.20
  • EE, unlimited calls and texts, 2GB Data, 4G Ready, £18.99
  • Three, unlimited calls and texts, 4GB Data, 4G Ready, £21

12 Month Deals

  • O2, unlimited calls and texts, 2GB Data, 4G Ready, £20
  • Vodafone, unlimited calls and texts, 1GB Data, 4G Ready, £16.50
  • EE, unlimited calls and texts, 2GB Data, 4G Ready, £15.99
  • Three, unlimited calls and texts, 4GB Data, 4G Ready, £18

Both EE and Vodafone offer 4G coverage at my home, whereas the other two networks do not. Additionally, EE has the most extensive 4G network in the UK at present.

This currently pegs EE as the cheapest provider for what I’m after.

Conclusions

At this early stage, I’m leaning towards EE as my next provider, based on a mix of coverage and cost. That said, my research hasn’t yet factored in the customer service quality of each network, any added value perks they offer, or the capability of their companion apps. At this stage, although a winner is emerging, my investigations will continue.

The Value of Opinion

I’ve blogged: On ethics, opinion, writing, and more besides. Enjoy.

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