Apple does not seize to be a major source of gossip and entertainment, especially when it comes to their famous iPhone. The Internet abounds with comments both positive and negative about their latest – the 6S. There are always two sides to a story (sometimes three), and some rationalization is in order when reading all the publicity – which Apple does not mind, by the way.
India, the third largest smartphone market in the world, is enjoying some of the spotlight with rumours that sales in their iStores are disappointing and that prices might be slashed. This could be explained by the fact that India is the most expensive place in the world to buy an iPhone S6 – a cool AU$1,310 for the 16GB model. Of course, Americans are asking why they have to continue paying the premium price for the S6. One wonders if they understand the massive changes in profit margins when charging a few Dollars less for a product that millions are buying worldwide. The other piece of speculation is about why the S6 chargers that are shipped to India are 10W as opposed to the usual 5W that the Americans are being sold. Some Americans assume the whole world is wired for a 110V power source and have not considered the fact that India uses 220V (as does Europe), which might explain the 10W charger.
Of course, critics there will always be and the iPhone S6 is no exception. They say the phone is heavy, wobbles on a protruding camera lens, has no micro SD card slot, infra-red port or FM radio, and the battery cannot be replaced by the user. Arguably, many users are prepared to live with most of these shortcomings and an issue such as the protruding lens can be solved by buying a cover for the phone. Few people replace a cell phone battery due to the short model upgrade cycles. The “mediocre screen-to-body ratio” is an interesting complaint, which I assume means the screen is too small compared to the body size of the phone. If my understanding is correct, this is intriguing, as many cell phone users have complained about smartphone screens that are inadvertently touched when handling the phone, launching apps and tools unintended. Surely the ideal is to have a decent edge between the body of the phone and the screen, especially for those of us who have the odd finger trouble.
Proprietary, yet still the best
Choosing Apple products traditionally came with certain interoperability limitations due to proprietary hardware and software. This is still the case with the iPhone – you need an Apple TV to wirelessly send your phone’s screen contents to an HDTV and the phone’s NFC functionality is limited to Apple’s Apple Pay.
Opinions on the iPhone S6 vary widely and a negative comment in any blog or column will almost immediately be followed by one that says “the best phone ever!” It will be interesting to see how Apple challenges the competition by pulling yet more rabbits from the smartphone hat.