The iPhone 6s Plus isn’t confirmed yet but thanks to several rounds of rumors, it’s clear that Apple has big plans for the fall. This month we saw a number of important details emerge and today we want to take a look at some of the things we learned about the iPhone 6s Plus and relate them to those thinking about buying Apple’s iPhone 6 Plus in the near future.
Last September served as the launch month for Apple’s new iPhones. There, the company debuted two big screen variants dubbed iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus. The two devices took over flagship duties from the iPhone 5s and they’ve gone on to sell millions of times over in the United States and abroad.
It has almost been a year since the release of Apple’s iPhone 6 Plus and the 5.5-inch monster remains one of the top smartphones on the market and without question, one of the best big screen phones you can buy. If you’re considering it right now, we don’t blame you. We just wouldn’t recommend buying it, at least not yet.
Rumor has it, a new iPhone 6 Plus is on the way, a device that’s currently called iPhone 6s Plus. The iPhone 6s Plus isn’t confirmed but rumors have outed many of its potential features and details ahead of Apple’s inevitable iPhone launch event later this year.
iPhone 6s Plus rumors in July focused primarily on the device’s specs though we also heard a great deal about the iPhone 6s Plus release. If you’re interested in the iPhone 6 Plus, these should be of interest to you.
Today we want to take a look at what we learned about the iPhone 6s Plus in the last four weeks. Keep these details in mind as you decide what to do about your next phone.
iPhone 6s Plus Release Date
If you’re debating between the iPhone 6 Plus and iPhone 6s Plus, you probably want to know when you’ll be able to buy the iPhone 6s Plus, how long of a wait it might be. Well, Apple hasn’t sent out invites yet and we don’t have a specific date but the iPhone 6s Plus release date has narrowed thanks to T-Mobile.
Earlier this week, T-Mobile started allowing its customers to buy a new iPhone 6 or iPhone 6 Plus now and then switch to an iPhone 6s or iPhone 6s Plus by the end of the year. This deal goes on until September 8th which means that the iPhone 6s Plus release date probably won’t land before that.
iPhone 6s Plus release date rumors in July failed to outline a specific date but they, like T-Mobile, have helped to narrow the device’s upcoming launch.
The device has reportedly entered production and Apple is expected to ramp up production in August ahead of a likely release in September alongside iOS 9. Apple’s manufacturing partners have also reportedly started to produce the chips that will be put inside the new iPhone.
Earlier this month, a supposed iPhone 6s Plus front panel leaked. If full scale production hasn’t started already, it’s probably going to start very soon.
What this means is that you probably don’t have to wait much longer for the iPhone 6s Plus launch and release. And that’s precisely why we recommend waiting for Apple to make its move. iPhones only come once a year and it’s clear that something new is coming soon.
The Biggest Differences
If you’re debating between the two, you’re probably interested in how they’ll stack up from a feature standpoint. We don’t have the full iPhone 6s Plus spec sheet but credible rumors that emerged in July have helped paint a pretty clear picture of Apple’s next iPhone.
We’ve learned that there will probably be a number of key differences between these two devices. That doesn’t come as much of a surprise. Apple can’t release the same exact phone two years in a row.
iPhone 6s Plus rumors point to a few key differences between the current model and the iPhone 6s Plus. The first is a new Force Touch display. Force Touch technology is currently found on the Apple Watch and new MacBook but it’s not yet available on the iPhone. According to analysts, this will be one of the iPhone 6s’s biggest changes.
Force Touch technology can sense how hard you’re pressing down on a device’s screen. It can also sense other things like where you’re pressing. By applying different amounts of pressure in different places, you can open up features in apps that aren’t possible without it.
The iPhone 6s Plus is also rumored to have a new A9 processor that includes an updated Qualcomm modem. The processor and modem combo are expected to offer better performance in key areas like LTE data speeds and overall battery life. It’s also expected to bump RAM to 2GB. The current models only come with 1GB RAM.
The other big change will apparently come to the iPhone’s cameras. The iPhone 6 Plus’ FaceTime camera has been trumped by Android’s front-facing phones and it looks like Apple will remedy that with a new 5MP FaceTime camera on the iPhone 6s and iPhone 6s Plus.
As for the rear camera, reports point to a new 12MP camera. Apple’s stuck with an 8MP sensor for many years now so this could be the big jump that many people have been waiting for.
There might also be some similarities between the two devices and iPhone 6s Plus rumors from July fleshed many of these out in detail.
First and foremost, the iPhone 6s Plus is expected to feature the same display as the iPhone 6 Plus. That means size (5.5-inches) and resolution. If you’re looking for a Quad HD Retina display, you’re probably not going to find it this year.
The iPhone 6s Plus is also rumored to have the same design as the iPhone 6 Plus. “S” iPhones usually come with a few design tweaks but they typically don’t come with a full on redesign. Apple’s redesign will likely happen next year with its iPhone 7 release.
Apple’s iPhone 6s Plus is also expected to feature Apple’s Touch ID fingerprint sensor though it’s not clear if it will be the same one found on the iPhone 6.
July saw a ton of back and forth regarding the iPhone 6s Plus’ storage options and we’re still not sure what to expect. Rumors have pointed to a 16GB or 32GB base model. Apple’s iPhone 6 Plus comes with a 16GB base that costs $299.99 on-contract.
Many consumers have been holding out hope for a $299.99 32GB base but we’re still not sure what Apple is planning for the fall. Nothing is confirmed and we could see the iPhone 6s Plus match the iPhone 6 Plus.
iPhone Price Hike & Deals
Do not pay full price for the iPhone 6 Plus right now.
Its time as the flagship is clearly coming to an end and a price drop is likely close. Once the iPhone 6s Plus arrives, Apple can’t sell it for top dollar.
We’ve already seen retailers slash the price of the iPhone 6 Plus in the buildup to the iPhone 6s release so there’s no reason to shell out for this device.
We don’t know how much the iPhone 6s Plus will cost though we know it will probably be more expensive than in years past. Not because Apple will be raising the price but because carriers will be tacking on new fees.
On August 1st, the cost of buying an iPhone 6 Plus on AT&T will reportedly jump up. The company is expected to bump the activation fee for two year contracts to $45. It’s also expected to raise the AT&T Next upgrade fee to $15.
These fees will make both phones more expensive and that’s something to keep in mind if you’re trying to be budget conscious in the days, weeks and months ahead.
And finally we’ve learned that both of these devices will see increased competition next month as other companies make their move.
On August 13th, Samsung is expected to announce two new big screen smartphones dubbed Galaxy Note 5 and Galaxy S6 Edge+. Both are expected to feature high-end features and both are expected to arrive ahead of the iPhone 6s Plus release date. This means that they need to be on your radar.
What’s more is that the Galaxy Note 4, a solid iPhone 6 Plus competitor, is likely to get cheaper, much cheaper, once the Galaxy Note 5 arrives.
Unless you’re dead set on buying an iPhone 6s Plus or iPhone 6 Plus, we recommend taking a look at these phones right now and in August when they’re announced. They’ll be solid competition for Apple’s devices.
iOS 9 & Longevity
At WWDC 2015, Apple announced a brand new iOS update that will be heading to the iPhone 6 this fall.
iOS 9 is Apple's new operating system and it will follow the iOS 8.4 update that just arrived for the iPhone 6 last week. iOS 9 is coming with a number of different features though our favorite is a real tangible battery life boost for the iPhone 6.
Once the iOS 9 update rolls out to the iPhone 6, you'll not only gain access to new battery saving features but also a full extra hour of battery life. That's absolutely huge for a device that's approaching its one year anniversary.
iOS 9 is going to be the first in a long line of iOS updates for the iPhone. Apple's rolling out iOS 9 to the iPhone 4s, its fourth major iOS update, and that could mean an additional year of software support for the iPhone 6. Apple's tendency is to offer three years before kicking a device to the curb.
This is big for two reasons. One, it means that you can safely invest in the iPhone 6 right now or three months from now when the iPhone 6s comes out. And two, it means that the iPhone 6's software support still makes Android software support look silly. Android phones are lucky to get 24 months of support from carriers.