The Wall Street Journal is known for giving Apple the benefit of the doubt with its new devices, so much so that it’s practically a turnoff to read their reviews on the iPhone. Last year’s iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus were glowing reviews of the iPhone, so much so that the writer of the review pretended that the new iPhones then were better than any others, including those of the Galaxy Note 4. Despite the wrong nature of the claim, it was done to match the views of the writers there: to support the iPhone at all cost. Sometimes, I think there is a nationalistic slant to American iPhone reviews.
This year’s review of the iPhone 6s and iPhone 6s Plus, however, is rather different. While the Wall Street Journal does give Apple credit for adding an additional GB of RAM to the iPhone 6s and 6s Plus, which makes video playback and multitasking faster, as well as the cameras (which are improved in well-lit situations but still have noise in low-light situations).
There’s one area in which the iPhone 6s hasn’t changed: battery life. Here’s what the WSJ says about the iPhone 6s:
The No.1 thing people want in a smartphone is better battery life. And the iPhone 6s doesn’t deliver that…still, there is no battery improvement over last year’s iPhone 6 models. In our grueling test, which loops a series of websites with brightness set at around 65%, I found the 6s and the 6s Plus get no more – but also no less – battery life than their predecessors…although Apple says that the 6s Plus gets hours more battery life than the 6s, repeated testing on multiple devices reveals a slimmer difference.
For the Wall Street Journal, the difference in testing between the iPhone 6s and the iPhone 6s Plus shows 20 minutes. Just a 20-minute difference, that’s all. You’ll still have to charge your iPhone 6s for two hours or so, as compared to Apple’s rival Samsung, whose Galaxy Note5 will charge in 75-80 minutes (2 hours with wireless charging, which gives you remote charging and doesn’t connect your phone to a power outlet). You can use Samsung’s new wireless charging and still charge your device at an equal time compared to Apple’s old traditional wall outlet charging. That’s quite pathetic, for Apple that is.
Yes, the iPhone 6s may live for 8 hours before requiring a wall outlet, which is about 2 hours more than that of the iPhone 6, but Apple’s battery technology hasn’t caught up with the rest of the high-end market. It’s pathetic to see Apple’s battery life in the iPhone 6s match Google’s battery life in the Nexus 5 – from 2013! I’ve never understood how Apple can sell its devices for $700 when the iPhone 6s has few improvements in it that mandate that price tag. The iPhone 6s, on the basis of much needed improvements, shouldn’t sell for anything over $400. When your device has the battery life of a 2-year-old phone, is it not unethical to sell it for this year’s price?
Now, the Wall Street Journal often writes with an Apple bias, so I used an Apple fan site’s review on which to talk about the new iPhone 6s and iPhone 6s Plus so that I wouldn’t be accused of bias. What it goes to show, however, is that new buyers will have to buy the new iPhones for more than just charging improvements, but for iOS. And I don’t think iOS is enough to get the iPhone 6s over the hurdle of just another mediocre, incremental hardware bump for 2015.
I’m sure that this won’t discourage consumers from buying Apple, since pointing out these things has never stopped the millions of American consumers from buying Apple. At the same time, however, you can’t say you haven’t been warned.