Two years ago, frustrated because Apple wouldn't bring out a larger iPhone and because their mini-iPad was too big to carry in my cargo pants pockets, I bought a Samsung Note2. I know many people love their Samsung phones and Android, but it was a big mistake for me (see this and this).
Despite using the Note2 for two years, I never adjusted to Android, and I never figured out some of the features on the Note2. I found myself using my iPad2 more often, and I can't count the number of times I said, "I hate this phone."
Finally, when the iPhone6+ was announced, I ordered one immediately. And I love it.
Everything was much easier for me to do on the iPhone 6+, most likely because my first smartphone was an iPhone, and I continued my familiarity with iOS using my iPad (see below).
- I can adjust the notifications easily.
- I can turn the ringer on or off with the flick of a switch.YEA!
- I synched the iPhone6+ with my computer and downloaded updates of all the apps I had purchased over the years for my previous iPhones and iPad, no problem.
I'm no tech guru (despite having been familiar with WatFor (Fortran II), DOS, and even some Windows programming for Windows 1.x). Digging around in Android to try to figure out how to do things was frustrating and certainly not fun. I don't have to do that in iOS.
Size: The screen of the 6+ is about the same size as the screen of the Note2, measured diagonally. But the 6+ is about a half inch longer and a quarter inch narrower. This difference means the 6+ (in a silicone case, see below) sticks out of my shirt pocket a bit more, but it also means that I can still easily fit a pen in my shirt pocket alongside the 6+, something that wasn't always easy with the Note2.
Battery Life: I had a backup battery for my Note2, and it seemed I was always having to charge up the phone and/or swap batteries. The iPhone6+ has an amazingly long battery life. Lots of my friends have complained about the short battery lives of their Samsung phones as well, so I'm not alone with this point.
Battery Life, continued: I used to plug my Note2 in overnight and then hope it could last through the day. Often it didn't; I was always checking the battery levels and recharging the phone. Because I had to keep the phone plugged in at night, when I woke up during the night, I would use my iPad to check my email, browse Facebook, and read novels. Now that I have my iPhone 6+, I have not touched my iPad. I plug the phone into my computer to charge it up now and then (with the side benefit of synching the apps and backing up the phone, all automatically), but I do everything on my 6+ and have never even come close to running out of battery power.
WiFi Connections: The wifi connections were never consistently automatic on my Note2. I have had ZERO problems with making and renewing wifi connections automatically on my iPhone6+.
Speed: the 6+ seems faster to me. I have run no tests and have no benchmarks, but it just seems faster. Many of the reviews agree that it is.
Screen resolution: The resolution on the 6+ seems better than anything I have seen anywhere else. I'm sure other smartphones do well in this regard, too, but this is pretty frickn amazing.
Things from Android/Note2 I thought I would miss:
- The back button,
- the menu button,
- the three-words atop the keyboard for speedier typing,
- the number keys atop the keyboard.
Back button: I admit that I do sometimes hit the lower right-hand corner of the 6+, trying to go back to a previous screen. But most of the apps I use have a back button in the upper left-hand corner. I just need to learn where it is.
Menu button: Android beats iOS on this. Most iOS apps have a setting button that lets me do what I want to do, and some have a menu button near the upper left-hand corner. But having a specific menu button in the lower left-hand corner would be a nice addition to iOS.
Three-word smart-word completion possibilities: I was pleasantly surprised to see this on my 6+! Yea!
Number keys atop the QWERTY row of keys: I want this. Anyone who lives in Canada (or elsewhere) that uses a mix of letters and numbers for postal codes gets frustrated typing those on an iPhone or iPad. The same goes for most passwords. I've looked a bit for an app that will give it to me, and I would be grateful for pointers if you know of one.
Gmail: the Gmail app on both phones is frustrating. I detest the "conversation" view in gmail, preferring the chronological view of my messages; I still haven't figured out how to get rid of the conversation view on a smartphone, even though I have turned it off on my laptop. Also I haven't found a gmail calendar look that I like on my 6+ as much as I liked the one I used on my Note2. [Addendum: it would also be nice if there were an easy way to move messages out of the inbox into various folders. The autocompletion for doing this in Gmail on a laptop is wonderful, but I have not seen any easy way to do it with a smartphone]
Books: I am disappointed that the Stanza reading app is no longer available for iOS (and was never available for Android). I loved being able to swipe up and down to alter the brightness of the screen [Update: see below]
Books, continued: It is frustrating that Apple makes it more difficult to order ebooks from Kindle and Kobo on their iPhones. I don't always want to order iBooks.
Micro SD card: I loved being able to store things on a 64GB micro SD card for my Note2. Sometimes getting the Note2 to communicate with my MacBook was such a hassle, it was easier to take the phone apart, remove the SD card, and plug it into my laptop. Communication between my 6+ and my MacBook is smooth, though, and I bought a 64 GB iPhone 6+, and so this isn't a problem for me, at least not yet.
Case: I bought the silicone case from Apple, in part to protect the phone, but in part to keep the phone from slipping out of my shirt pocket too easily (e.g. when I lean over). It works perfectly.
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Update: After reading this, my younger son, Adam Smith Palmer, wrote that with iOS 7 and iOS 8, it is possible to swipe up from the bottom of a screen to open the control centre and change screen brightness there. Okay, I see that it works, but so far I am struggling with the swipes, trying to get them to do what I want, when I'm using Bluefire (mostly to read scripts) or even Kindle (where I read novels). Much of the time, swiping up reveals a "control centre icon" or whatever it is called, but then I can't get it to open the control centre; eventually I'll probably master the touch. It seems to require a double swipe to make this work [duh!]. This feature looks much like the swipe-down feature on my Note2, from which I could check things and open control features.
Also, though, when I adjust the brightness that way, the iPhone doesn't show me what the screen will look like, and I'm left guessing about what level of brightness I might end up with [Ah, I see now that it does really show the brightness while I'm messing with the brightness slider].
This method of controlling brightness seems to affect all the apps on the phone, not just the brightness of whatever app I am using to read ebooks. For now, I think it is easier just to use the settings buttons to adjust brightness. Stanza was much better with this feature (plus, it allowed me to choose from myriad options for colours, line spacing, etc.).