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Apple iPhone 6s user review: Battery, improved camera make it worth an upgrade

The iPhone 6s might not look very different from the iPhone 6, but it does offer battery improvements, and a better camera, especially if you are iPhone 5s and older.

Rating: 4 out of 5
Written by Shruti Dhapola |
Updated: November 2, 2015 9:46:39 am
Apple iPhone 6s review, iPhone 6s review, iPhone 6s User review, iPhone 6s review, Apple, Apple iPhone 6s, Apple iPhone 6s price, iPhone 6s features, iPhone 6s camera, technology, technology news iPhone 6s user review: The battery is great but Apple could have done a lot more with the camera.

India is a price-conscious market when it comes to smartphones as we are constantly reminded. So when Apple launches its new iPhone 6s for Rs 62,000 and the iPhone 6s Plus at Rs 72,000, it is natural to hear a lot of complaining and reports pointing out that Apple correct its prices. Some are already predicting a price-drop.

Price-drop or not, Apple’s products carry with them an air of exclusivity and for those who are heavily invested into the Apple ecosystem, the idea of getting out is definitely not easy. I have been using an iPhone 5c for the last two years, which gave me very little to complaint in terms of general performance. While I didn’t upgrade when the iPhone 6 was launched, I decided to take the plunge with 6s this year.

So was it worth, burning all my money on a phone, when they are so many worthy Androids in the market? Based on the last one week, here’s my take.

Apple iPhone 6s review, iPhone 6s review, iPhone 6s User review, iPhone 6s review, Apple, Apple iPhone 6s, Apple iPhone 6s price, iPhone 6s features, iPhone 6s camera, technology, technology news iPhone 6s comes with 3D Touch and here’s a glimpse at how it works.

Screen and 3D Touch: Unlike most people, I hate phablets. For my tiny hands, the 4-inch iPhone 5c was perfect, so it was natural that I would go with the iPhone 6s, not the bigger iPhone 6s Plus. The bigger screen of the iPhone 6s works well, be it in sunlight or out of it. The screen might not be full HD or 4K or Super AMOLED, but honestly it’s not a difference that has bothered me too much.

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As for the new 3D Touch feature, it takes a while to figure out. You need to make sure you press hard with some pressure and the app will respond with its Peek and Pop features. It’s also how you bring Live photos to life. When you try 3D Touch on an app that is not compatible, the screen gives a buzz, reminding you that there’s nothing here.

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There’s no doubt that the feature has its uses, especially for the way I open Instagram or the camera app or when it comes to forwarding pics on WhatsApp. But that’s about it as far as 3D Touch usage goes for me. It’s still a nascent feature, and it will be interesting to see how many apps actually become 3D Touch compatible.

Battery: The other big difference with the new iPhone 6s is definitely the battery. With the iPhone 5c, I lived in constant fear that the smartphone will drain out. I would switch off 3G, Location services and usually put it back on charge in office during the early half of the day.

With the iPhone 6s, I don’t do any of this. I charge it once overnight, and it will last the whole day. I would rate my usage as bordering on heavy given that I constantly listen to music, get a stream of pings on WhatsApp and Facebook, followed by Instagram browsing. For the battery alone, I think the iPhone 6s is worth the moolah.

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Camera: Apple’s days of the 8mp rear and 2 mp front camera are over. My iPhone 5c camera gave excellent results in proper light and I used it to full effect on several vacations to get some memorable shots. But in low-light, it was another story.

With the iPhone 6s, the camera difference for me is very noticeable if I go with the low-light quality performance. Plus selfies with the screen as the flash are a great idea. Live Photos are another feature I appreciate, mostly because I have a hyperactive dog and this is a great way to capture him.

But the lack of OIS still hurts and I wish Apple would still let users tinker with the camera settings a bit. Having used Samsung’s top-end camera phones, I would say giving users more options in these settings is a must.

On the colour reproduction front, I’m firmly with the iPhone, since it’s not over-saturated like a lot of other phones in the market. Is the iPhone 6s the best camera phone for its price? I can’t say a definitive yes, though I must say if glossy pictures is what you want, the iPhone might not be the answer.

Performance: Apple has never bothered competing on specs sheet. 2GB RAM and dual-core A9 processor ensure a smooth performance. Play a high-end game like Asphalt 8 or even the beautiful black and white Limbo, the phone works smoothly.

If you’re upgrading from an older iPhone, I would suggest you do the transfer, setting up via iTunes. The only issue I faced was getting all my apps back, when I set-up the phone. While the iTunes transfer happened smoothly, the apps kept showing as waiting. I had to delete all the apps and download everything all over again.

So was the upgrade worth it?

Given that I was stuck with a scratched up, smaller iPhone for nearly two years, this update was long due. Yes my gold (no I didn’t get the rose gold) iPhone 6s looks just like the 6, though it is heavier. But the improved camera, and the amazing battery life have left me impressed. 3D Touch, while it is a work in progress, is also something that no other phone really offers.

Now here’s hoping that Apple won’t make me regret this decision by drastically overhauling the next version of the iPhone.

Read more: Apple iPhone 6s week long review: Great smartphone if you can afford it

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