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8/28/2014
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Jeff Bertolucci
Jeff Bertolucci
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8 Things We Want In iPhone 6

What features rank as most wanted in Apple's soon-to-debut iPhone? Let's talk battery, camera, display, and more.
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(Source: iPhone 6 concept by graphic designer Martin Hajek)
(Source: iPhone 6 concept by graphic designer Martin Hajek)

Here's what we want, Apple
We're coming down to the wire. All signs point to a Sept. 9 launch for Apple's next-generation iPhone, better known by its unofficial moniker, iPhone 6. That's less than two weeks from now, meaning the endless series of iPhone speculation stories (yes, like this one) will soon get a stake through the heart. However, they won't die a vampire's death. Rather, they will rise again this fall, when rumors of the iPhone 7 begin to leak out from Apple's vast supply chain in Asia.

One interesting thing about iPhone rumors is that they invariably focus on hardware specs -- screen size, processor, camera, storage capacity, and so on. It's much easier for Apple to silence chatter on new software, particularly when developed in-house, than it is to keep far-flung suppliers from spilling hardware factoids to eager journalists and analysts.

As a result, we tend to hear far more gossip about Apple's prerelease hardware than its software. A good example of this came at Apple's Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC) in June, when senior vice president of software engineering Craig Federighi introduced Swift, a new programming language for creating iOS and Mac OS X apps. Swift took the keynote audience and blogosphere by surprise, as rumors leading up to the event hadn't mentioned it as one of Apple's likely WWDC announcements.

We already know a lot about the iPhone 6, but the handset's precise physical appearance remains something of a mystery. (The slide above isn't a leaked snapshot of the new iPhone -- it's too far too pretty for that -- but rather a conceptual image created by graphic designer Martin Hajek.) One thing is certain: Despite being notably larger than its predecessor, the new model(s) will retain Apple's slim-and-sleek aesthetic.

What else is new? Well, one recent rumor says the larger of the two new iPhones, the one with the 5.5-inch display, will be named the "iPhone 6L" (the L presumably standing for "Large").

It'll be interesting to see how Apple prices the iPhone 6. Will the 5.5-inch model be the premium edition, perhaps with features not available in its 4.7-inch sibling? Or will screen size be the only distinction between the two? Assuming the smaller model has more mainstream appeal -- as it probably will in the North American market, where 5-inch or larger phones (i.e., phablets) aren't as popular as they are in Asia -- the latter option seems likely.

Exlore the slideshow to see the top eight things we want to see from the iPhone 6. And tell us if you agree with our choices.

Jeff Bertolucci is a technology journalist in Los Angeles who writes mostly for Kiplinger's Personal Finance, The Saturday Evening Post, and InformationWeek. View Full Bio

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Joe Stanganelli
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Joe Stanganelli,
User Rank: Ninja
9/3/2014 | 10:37:50 AM
Re: The battery problem
On a related note, here's a protip: Want to be the most popular guy at the industry conference?  Bring a power strip.  ;)
Joe Stanganelli
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Joe Stanganelli,
User Rank: Ninja
9/3/2014 | 10:36:11 AM
Re: How about a screen that doesn't crack?
You don't need an enormous case.  You need a good case.

I had such a good, non-large (indeed, it was very form-fitting) case on my old iPhone.  I dropped it and stepped on it a zillion times.  Nary a scratch.

It took DROPPING THE PHONE THREE STORIES ONTO A HARD SURFACE to damage it -- and even then, the screen was not even scratched (let alone cracked or shattered).  All that happened was the screen and the home button popped out a little bit.  I got it repaired that same day.

(Alas, the antenna was permanently screwed up, and I wound up getting a new phone a few months later, but the glass was fine.)
Li Tan
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Li Tan,
User Rank: Ninja
9/1/2014 | 10:45:43 AM
Re: The battery problem
This is not just for iPhone but a general problem for all smartphones. Nowadays the battery of smartphone cannot last for more than 2-3 days. For iPhone 6, it may become a more severe problem - the phone is so thin and slim. The capacity of the battery cannot be very big. So it may get drained more easily.
jgherbert
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jgherbert,
User Rank: Ninja
9/1/2014 | 12:28:55 AM
Re: How about a screen that doesn't crack?
@D. Henschen> "Apple has notoriously wimpy sceen glass. Unless you have one of those giant protective cases, you can expect to crack or shatter your screen. How about real Gorilla Glass on the iPhone 6?"

 

My understanding was that the iPhones used Gorilla Glass. Are they not? If so, what are they using? 
shamika
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shamika,
User Rank: Ninja
8/31/2014 | 11:52:27 PM
Re: How about actually work for the 2 year contract cycle?
@Joe – Most of us don't prefer warranty extensions because of the extra cost we have to incur, but it seems that this is worth the investment. 
Joe Stanganelli
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Joe Stanganelli,
User Rank: Ninja
8/29/2014 | 10:47:58 PM
Re: How about actually work for the 2 year contract cycle?
In my very humble opinion, warranty extensions for most electronics are worth the paper they're written on.  For your computer, okay, but for phones?  As long as you have a good case and/or are not a total klutz, you're good.
Joe Stanganelli
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Joe Stanganelli,
User Rank: Ninja
8/29/2014 | 10:45:54 PM
Re: Unlocked and usable on all carriers out of the box
@Susan: Flexible/unlocked iPhones direct from Apple is nothing particularly new.  As early as 2011 (if not sooner), the company was working on phones that would offer 1) dual compatibility with GSM and CDMA and 2) universal SIM compatibility.  Additionally, they hold a patent for software that would send carrier information direct to a user's phone and allow the user to easily shop and compare rate plans via their iPhone -- taking power away from the carriers and making choice of carrier irrelevant so long as the choice of phone is the iPhone.
H@mmy
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H@mmy,
User Rank: Moderator
8/29/2014 | 4:19:39 PM
Re: How about actually work for the 2 year contract cycle?
Warranty extension sounds good. Can't we pay more to get warranty extended, atleast till the contract ends? 
H@mmy
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H@mmy,
User Rank: Moderator
8/29/2014 | 4:16:39 PM
Re: How about a screen that doesn't crack?
The use of sapphire crystal in electronics, watches and other jewelry isn't new. Apple also reportedly used sapphire in the iPhone 5s to cover both the home button and the rear-facing camera lens. However, it is unclear to me just how much more drop-proof or shatter resistant sapphire is on a phone.
H@mmy
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H@mmy,
User Rank: Moderator
8/29/2014 | 4:10:26 PM
Re: The battery problem
The iPhone 6 will also likely come with enhanced components that could put a drain on battery life. Whether a larger battery in the iPhone 6 will actually deliver better battery life remains to be seen.
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