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  • Der2 - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    Its about time. Reply
  • zeeBomb - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    Oh man...oh man it's finally here. I just wanted to say thank you for faithfuflly using all your findings to incorporate this review. It may have take a little longer than expected, but hey, this is my first anandtech review that I probably camped out for it to drop, lol...thanks again Joshua and Brandon! Reply
  • zeeBomb - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    Ugh. I meant Ryan Smith...sorry! Waking up at 5 isn't the ideal way to go... Reply
  • Samus - Thursday, November 05, 2015 - link

    That's what she said, Der bra. Reply
  • zeeBomb - Sunday, November 08, 2015 - link

    Very valid point. Speaking of valid points... 500! Reply
  • trivor - Thursday, November 05, 2015 - link

    Have to disagree with your statement that the high end Android phone space has stood still. With this round of phones the Android OEMs have all upped their game to approximate parity with the iPhones and in some cases exceed the performance and quality of images taken by an iPhone. In addition, on phones like the LG G4 the option of having manual control of your picture taking and supporting RAW/JPEG simultaneously is a huge advance for smartphones. Add to that, phase change focusing, laser rangefinder for close focus, generous internal storage (32 GB) and micro SD expansion (which works quite well on Lollipop - not sure about Marshmallow yet) you have a great camera phone. It also has OIS 2.0 (whatever that means) at a significantly lower cost than even the low end (16 GB) iPhone 6s @ $450-500 for the G4 versus $650 for the iPhone. While iOS seems to get apps updated a little quicker, look nicer from what I've heard and seem to be a little more feature rich. Conversely, the Material Design language has greatly improved the state of Android interfaces to give Android OEMs a much more stable OS - although the first builds of Lollipop were not ready for prime time. Also, let's not forget that Android dominates the low - middle range of Smartphones below $400 with near flagship specs, excellent cameras in phones like the Motorola Style (Pure Edition in the US), Motorola Play (is apparently the base model for the Droid Maxx 2 for Verizon, a number of the Asus Zenphones, the Moto G and E. Also, the new Nexus' (6P and 5X) are both competitive across the board with new cameras with 1.55 micron pixels that let in significantly more light than the 1.12 pixels in other cameras, are competitively priced (especially the 6P @ $499), and are overall very nice handsets. Finally, the customizability and wide variety of handsets at EVERY PRICE POINT make Android a compelling choice for many consumers. Reply
  • Fidelator - Friday, November 06, 2015 - link

    I couldn't agree more, the Android space has not stayed still, if anything, most of the problems on that side were due to Qualcomm's lack of a good offering this year, still, the phones were further refines in other areas, saying this is overall the best camera phone given the only advantage it has over the competition is reduced motion blur is complete bull, the UI is far from the best given that auto on both the SGS6/Note 5 and the G4 is as effective yet those still offer great manual settings.

    The -barely over 720p- display on the 6S is inexcusable for 2015 and given the starting price of the 6S should not be passed as an acceptable not even as a good display.

    Where Apple deserves credit is with the A9, it is miles ahead of anything the competition currently offers, they have made some fantastic design choices, it just is on the next level.
    Reply
  • robertthekillertire - Monday, November 09, 2015 - link

    I'm actually very happy with Apple's decision to stick with a lower-resolution screen. Which would you rather: a smartphone with an insanely high pixel count that your eyes probably can't appreciate anyway, or a smartphone with a lower PPI (but barely perceptibly so) that gets better battery life and has smoother UI and game performance because it's not trying to push an absurd number of pixels at any given moment? The tradeoff just doesn't seem worth it to me. Reply
  • MathieuLF - Tuesday, November 10, 2015 - link

    But your eyes can tell the difference... When I had my iPhone 6+ and Nexus 6P side by side I can see it right away that the Nexus has more pixels Reply
  • Cantona7 - Tuesday, December 01, 2015 - link

    But the difference is not large enough to justify heavier power consumption and greater graphics requirement. I agree that more pixels is certainly more pleasant to the eyes, but I'd rather greater battery life. If the Nexus 6P had a lower resolution screen, it would have a even greater battery life which would be awesome Reply
  • TitaniK - Friday, November 13, 2015 - link

    I used to be so pro android and have tried all main phones on the market; Samsung 3&4, note3,4, htc one m7, nexus 4. I need my phone constantly mainly for business as well as pleasure and at the end, i surrendered to Apple product; so reliable, fast and just clean. It's just a well tuned machine. I compare it this way; android is the NASCAR of mobile devices where Apple is Formula 1. Cars go very fast in both organizations but the Formula 1 machines are simply finer tuned and polished machines. Reply
  • 10basetom - Sunday, November 08, 2015 - link

    Even though my last two phones have been Androids, I would have to agree with the reviewer's assessment that Android phones have been, more or less, a zero sum game. You can call me jaded, but there's not a single Android phone in the past year that has gotten me truly excited, maybe with the exception of potentially cheaper (relative to YotaPhone 2) dual screen phones coming out of China that would change how you use a phone on a daily basis. PDAF, laser autofocus, and RAW support are nice specs to have for a limited group of photography aficionados, but I don't consider them real innovation in the overall user experience department. Most consumers (i.e., non-geeks) who use phones to take everyday photos will not notice -- or even care -- whether their phone has PDAF or not; and for people who want to take frameable photos, they would probably do so with a tripod and DLSR rather than a mobile phone. Besides, the cameras in the iPhone 6s' are nothing to laugh at.

    When I think of progress in mobile OS usability, it would have to be something that gives the end user more pleasure in using it, or increase their productivity in a measurable way (e.g., less time in doing something, fewer taps). Maybe I've just been using Android for too long, but there is nothing in Lollipop or what I've seen of Marshmallow that makes me stop and silently shout "damn, that is impressive!". Sure, the interface is a little more streamlined with enhanced jazzy animations (that I turn off anyway to improve performance), and some new iterative features sprinkled here and there, but nothing revolutionary. It's unfortunate that most Android phone manufacturers build a custom skin on top that more often than not makes the phone less usable and more buggy, and also more confusing when you move from one Android phone to the next.

    The WinCE-based Neno OS that introduced a 100% swipable interface and weaned people off the stylus two years before the original iPhone -- that's way into revolutionary territory. The pulley menu system in Sailfish OS -- now that's something refreshing. It may not be everybody's cup of tea, but at least they are trying something different, and when you do get used to it, it really does improve one-handed usability. The 3D Touch interface in the new iPhones? Now that's bordering on revolutionary. Again, it may not seem apparent when you first use it, but after living with it for an extended period of time until it becomes habit, you would be hard-pressed to go back to a mobile phone without a pressure-sensitive touch layer. The exciting thing is that we are just scratching the surface of what 3D Touch can bring; and the module could be made thinner and lighter so that future iPhones won't get such a large weight bump.

    Other than the superior A9 SoC which has already been widely discussed, the other big thing for me that Android phones have been dropping the ball on is storage architecture. Whereas most Android phones are still advertising eMMC 5.0 storage solutions, the iPhone 6s' have moved way beyond that. Samsung's move to UFS 2.0 is a step in the right direction, and I hope all other Android phone manufacturers will follow suit soon.
    Reply
  • dusszz - Monday, November 30, 2015 - link

    I've been a long time android user seriously thinking of switching to iphone. Android OS in general is not meant for high end devices because prior to nexus 6p, android is designed for nexus phone which is not a high end devices. The high end iteration of android as in galaxy s6/note 5 with skins feel fragmented and does not really in line with what google intended (material design). Sure they add features with that but it felt like they (high end oem) trying too hard to compete. I always feel the best android devices must come from nexus line but then it does not quite there at least just yet. Every innovation in android OS always feel like it is in beta because the implementation more for marketing rather than useful. For example, nexus 5 has OIS since 2013 but does not feel it has advantage over other phone that has EIS. Furthermore, decision google made to ditch OIS (nexus 6p/5x) further clarify it. I personally never have android phone for more than a year without feeling outdated in term of hardware. So if you think you buy $500 android phone thinking it can compete with iphone, its going to be disappointing. Android is at its best being a midranger. Reply
  • hans_ober - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    at last! Reply
  • vFunct - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    I wish he took proper photo tests.

    Tip: when testing cameras, do make sure to take photos of people. Don't take photos of brick walls.

    You're going to find that most people take photos of people with their phones - at parties, selfies, etc..

    A good camera test always includes people shots.
    Reply
  • vFunct - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    Basically you're looking for skin-tone reproduction quality. Reply
  • Klug4Pres - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    I wonder if next year the Home button will disappear, which would help a lot with the bezeltastic design. Reply
  • zeeBomb - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    That username...lol.

    I dunno man, the home button is the staple of iPhone Design since the very original. Might be pretty controversial if you'd ask me.
    Reply
  • KoolAidMan1 - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    The fingerprint reader is another big reason. If they can get it to be as fast and accurate as it is right now while reducing home button size then I can see them reducing the bottom bezel.

    Otherwise you're looking at making their fingerprint reader as flaky and undependable as Samsung or everyone else's
    Reply
  • Tetracycloide - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    The nexus 5x has been super solid. Reply
  • Shadow7037932 - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    Finally! Now how about the Nexus and Moto X reviews? :P Reply
  • RazrLeaf - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    I'm hoping that they get those out before the Black Friday. Reply
  • nathanddrews - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    How about the new 950/950XL? ;-) Reply
  • zeeBomb - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    Im pretty sure that'll be somewhere in December. Reply
  • abhaxus - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    of 2016?

    By that time the ads will completely take over your phone screen instead of being just a tiny scrolling one that takes up 1/3 of the screen.

    RIP Anandtech.
    Reply
  • ezridah - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    It doesn't look like they'll do a Nexus 6P review because they're weren't provided a sample. Very disappointing to say the least... Reply
  • tuxRoller - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    Which is a shame, considering the amazing reviews its been getting, and it seems that at least someone has produced a really excellent experience with the snapdragon 810! Reply
  • amdwilliam1985 - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    I will love to see the 6P review from Anandtech as well. I've read every popular reviews out there on 5X and 6P, on websites and youtubes. I've decided to go for the 64GB 6P, but I would still love to see Anandtech's take on 6P, especially comparing to Nexus 5(that's where I'm coming from) and Nexus 6. Reply
  • djsvetljo - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    I admit, I only read the "Final Words" page and it felt like Russian propaganda before 1990. I respect Anandtech for its highly techy and geeky reviews and tests but I am now 100% convinced that anything Apple related is paid (IMO). There aren't many reviews out there that dare to "the best..." instead of "one of the best...". Reply
  • djsvetljo - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    "The best" was used 7 times in the summary. :D Reply
  • vFunct - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    It's probably because they're the best. Reply
  • dysonlu - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    Just like Lance Armstrong was too. Reply
  • vFunct - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    I'm sure a lot of things are best in their category/field.

    The iPhone just happens to be one of them.
    Reply
  • r3loaded - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    If you now read the rest of the review, you'll find the evidence that supports their claim of being "the best". Reply
  • djsvetljo - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    After reading the summary, I can't read the rest. Reply
  • ToastyFlake - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    A leading symptom of fanboyitus. Reply
  • djsvetljo - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    I am a complete opposite of fan boy. I use daily 2 phones, a BlackBerry10 and Android, equipped my business with ThinkPads and HPs, drive American and Japanese car. Never been a fan boy of anything but strive to get the best FOR MY NEEDS product available at the current time. And everybody has different needs. However, Anandtech (the Apple reviewers at least) doesn't know that. That's is what really bothers me right there. They are trying to tell me - if you want the best phone - get the 6s. Well guess what - you are wrong cause for my needs, it wouldn't last one business week for me.

    I have been reading their Apple articles for years - they do not compare equally (why they don't try to compare functions that are not present on Apple platforms - [standard] NFC, File Manager, File Sharing, Expansion ports, IR and so on). They have been doing the same thing for years. Same goes for MACs.
    Reply
  • Chaser - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    Maybe Anandtech should write special review just for you that revolves around "YOUR NEEDS". You admit you didn't read the review except the last paragraph but then you have all the time in the world to babble with your baseless tripe. Nice business I'm sure. Reply
  • djsvetljo - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    Nobody gets it. All they have to do is add "one of" infront of every "the best" and point out the negatives of this phone like a man, not hide them like a mice who's "mother" works for the worship. Reply
  • solipsism - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    1) They do point out negatives, but as you repeatedly stated, you refuse to read the article (or even use an Apple product).

    2) Putting "one of" doesn't alter anything in your "FOR MY NEEDS" argument as you made it clear no Apple product will ever last a week for you, so it would still be wrong, based on that. How about this, instead of trying to get the author to write specifically for you, why not try to look at it from the author's PoV or the mass-market PoV?
    Reply
  • Stuka87 - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    The issue is if you had read the article, you would see the majority of those "Best of" are backed up by facts.

    Sure them saying iOS is the best experience is subjective, but the benchmarks prove the SoC and performance *IS* the best.
    Reply
  • nikon133 - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    Nah, I get it. Reviewer should put facts on paper and let each reader decide if that is the best whatever for his/her needs; not putting conclusions in readers' heads. Good review should be dispassionate; too many "the bests" and it starts sounding a bit patronizing.

    This in general. Regardless of what is being reviewed. Well, much as my opinion goes.
    Reply
  • Caliko - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    They did put facts on paper. Some of those "the best" weren't opinions but performance facts. Reply
  • maximumGPU - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    i agree with you. I don't have anything against the conclusion, but some stuff just didn't belong in an Anandtech review, like the number of "the bests".
    In particular, reading "In a lot of ways, it almost feels like magic " made me cringe.
    Reply
  • NahImSerious - Monday, November 09, 2015 - link

    Disagree wholeheartedly.

    Simple metrics of a device, which is what I assume you mean by putting facts on paper and being dispassionate aren't the end-all-be-all for almost anything that will be used by humans.

    The "facts on paper" approach is why so many Android phones suck, despite having better "specs" in certain areas..

    Reviews that don't translate the facts with how it translates to usability are essentially worthless Longreads of info you can get from the manufacture....
    Reply
  • Ishwa - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    It isn't one of the best, though. It IS the best. Reply
  • Rylen - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    But it's THE BEST, not just one of the best. Reply
  • daveedvdv - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    True that. Well, the gold color one is the best. I saw it on YouTube a couple of years ago :-) "Gold is best!". Reply
  • deasys - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    I guess you're right, djsvetljo. Following your fine example, I will state that the Kansas City Royals are one of the best major league baseball teams this year and lewis Hamilton is one of the best F1 drivers this year. Reply
  • Caliko - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    You didn't even read the review. Reply
  • rangerdavid - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    A reviewer may either consider a device "one of the best," or "the best." Those statements are not interchangeable. Reply
  • rangerdavid - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    Well said. My thoughts exactly. Reply
  • adonishong - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    Seems like iPhone could not fit your requirement completely, but why you still stick here and "reading their Apple articles for years"? Reply
  • tuxRoller - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    No, you are a fanboy (apparently in denial, but certainly have the symptoms).
    I don't own (and will not) a single apple device, but, objectively, they are producing the best phones THIS year.
    Reply
  • Caliko - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    Why buy knockoffs? What a waste of money. Reply
  • Caliko - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    You don't use Apple products for your business? *facepalm*

    Apple is leading by a humongous margin in the enterprise for a reason. Your business must be doing bad if you supply knockoffs instead.
    Reply
  • redvodka - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    I never understand you guys. Anandtech has reviewed and heaped nothing but praises for the Samsung Galaxy 6 another android phone yet you only read this review and claim Anandtech are biased. Way to be hypocritical. Reply
  • zeeBomb - Sunday, November 08, 2015 - link

    Wow man. Perhaps the best tech review on the iPhone 6s/6s Plus and this is how you repay them? Reply
  • IanHagen - Wednesday, November 04, 2015 - link

    You're the opposite of a fanboy? You're taking offence at the iPhone receiving a very favourable review and justifies your position with "I can't read past the summary" for goodness sake! Reply
  • nathanddrews - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    Perhaps you should just look at all the graphs without reading anything. Shield your sensitive brain from anything other than cold, hard, objective facts.

    I have no desire to own an iphone (or any Apple product), but at least I can see clearly that its performance is a head and shoulders above other devices.
    Reply
  • Caliko - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    You can't afford an iPhone or what's the problem? Reply
  • kael13 - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    Some people don't like the ecosystem. Doesn't change the fact it's the best performing phone, however. Reply
  • Caliko - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    I don't get this at all. It's a knockoff product with stolen software.

    You can get the entire android ecosystem on iPhone as well. Just download Goog apps.
    Reply
  • tuxRoller - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    Android has existed longer than iphone (via Danger). Prior to Android's official release they had TWO phones in production. The first was the one they intended to release first, but they dropped that one after the iphone was released and went with the second one (touchscreen based interface).
    I'd hardly call it a knockoff given the evolution of both android and the iphone, and if software was actually stolen you'd see lawsuits against google by apple.
    However, given your comments, I think you're probably a troll.
    Reply
  • zeeBomb - Saturday, November 07, 2015 - link

    Lol k Reply
  • Caliko - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    The f***ing ignorance.

    Afraid you might agree? Smh.
    Reply
  • Ryan Smith - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    Short of showing you AnandTech's books and my own personal bank account I am doubtful I could convince you otherwise, but no, we have not and never will accept payment for articles, and not from Apple or anyone else. The opinions you see here are solely those of Josh and myself (more so his than mine, as he's the primary author), and we are both in agreement that there simply is not another phone out there that can match the 6s at this time. It really is that good.*

    * Especially the SoC
    Reply
  • AEdouard - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    You should really ignore these ridiculous comments. Rest assured that the vast majority of non tin foil hat wearing readers are miles away from thinking this. Reply
  • hbsource - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    +1 Reply
  • Kvaern2 - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    Amen Reply
  • daveedvdv - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    People can disagree on what's the "best" overall, but once they reach for the "they're obviously paid by XXX" argument, they have forfeited their own credibility.

    Great job on that review! Many thanks for what obviously must have been painstaking work getting all the measurements and estimates for SoC feature counts.
    Reply
  • Alexey291 - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    Or maybe, just maybe, they actually see the pretty damn obvious deterioration of quality in the website. Possibly they noticed that reviews have now become adverts instead of actual critiques.

    I don't actually think they get paid anything straight up, but boy is Anandtech editorial team scared of offending the vendors. The time when these guys were at all objective has passed a long time ago.

    But yeah great review. This webby is certainly the best at saying 'the best'.

    /yawn
    Reply
  • zeeBomb - Saturday, November 07, 2015 - link

    Oh yes definitely! Reply
  • djsvetljo - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    Oh please. There so many things wrong with this phone.

    BTW, didn't Anand himself went to work for Apple last year?
    Reply
  • AEdouard - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    As there are things wrong with any other phone, and the negatives (minor by all accounts) are mentioned. Reply
  • djsvetljo - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    There are many wrong things with many wrong platforms and phones. [ I my self still hold a BlackBerry10 and Moto X first generation because I can't chose a modern phone for my needs (size being key factor). ]
    That is why nobody of such high of tribune should dare to call something "the best".
    Reply
  • AEdouard - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    The Nexus 6P seems pretty much the clear top choice on Android right now no? Reply
  • NEDM64 - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    "on Android" Reply
  • ASEdouardD - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    Yeah, that's why I said Android. I have a 6s Plus which I really like right now.

    But I would be perfectly happy with a 6P. Also loved my Nexus 5, despite its drawbacks (battery, camera).
    Reply
  • zeeBomb - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    Its okay man. At least, Google finally got the camera right. Reply
  • Caliko - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    Never will I settle for less. Especially a knockoff. Reply
  • kael13 - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    6P apparently breaks very easily. (As in, super easily bent - far easier than original iPhone 6 plus.) Reply
  • Caliko - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    The s6 bends a lot easier and shatters at the same time.

    But you won't see a media circus over non Apple devices.
    Reply
  • halcyon - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    Nexus 6P is a slow dog with overheating Snapdragon 810, compared to Apple's A9.

    Worse even than Exynos 7420 on Galaxy Note5.

    It's a mid-high end or high mind-end phone.
    Reply
  • AEdouard - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    Oops, sorry forgot about size. Reply
  • Shadow7037932 - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    Hold on to that small Moto X. Because no one is going to go back to making small phones. Reply
  • hans_ober - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    First world problems.... only if they would release a slightly updated version of that beauty. Reply
  • michael2k - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    It's too bad you don't understand why you're wrong since you refuse to read the article. They clearly measure CPU performance, battery life, display performance, white point and black point, read and write performance, graphics performance, NAND performance, use cases for 3D touch and faster encrytpion, etc, and where they are weak. The "best" title isn't empty here. Reply
  • Caliko - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    "I don't wanna hear it Lalalalalala!" Reply
  • AEdouard - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    And yeah, he went to work for Apple. How strange, the behemoth of technology attracts talent from the tech world. Insane I tell you! Reply
  • IanHagen - Wednesday, November 04, 2015 - link

    Something fishy must be going on! Someone call Nick Farrel, quick! Reply
  • Ryan Smith - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    "BTW, didn't Anand himself went to work for Apple last year? "

    Indeed he did. Which is why he no longer has any kind of stake in AnandTech, and is the very last person we'd ever talk to about Apple products.
    Reply
  • NEDM64 - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    Yes, he's now one of the 100,000 Apple employees. He is an Engineer (EECS, I think), so what's so surprising? Reply
  • Caliko - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    You're in such denial it's sad.

    That guy you speak of sold this site a year ago.

    Regardless it means nothing either way. There's good factual info here and the fact you don't own a single Apple product and refuse to only cements the idea of a jealous troll and fanboy.

    Still shaking my head at someone who has a business but won't use the right tools.
    Reply
  • daveedvdv - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    "BTW, didn't Anand himself went to work for Apple last year?"

    You keep making ad hominem remarks (the other one claiming the reviewers were paid): It doesn't help your case.
    Reply
  • AEdouard - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    And as always, thanks for the most in depth review on the web. Reply
  • zeeBomb - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    Amen! Reply
  • djsvetljo - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    I agree about the SoC. You guys are praising everything in this phone, you even make the negatives look good. Professionals have reviewed the camera really poorly and yet in your summary it feels you almost called it "the best" again. Reply
  • AEdouard - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    ''Professionals have reviewed the camera really poorly'' Well hi there well reasoned person. So what you're insinuating here is that the critical consensus from ''good'' reviewers rate the camera on the 6s as poor compared to what should be the relative best in a smartphone.

    You can't seriously believe this? If the camera in the 6s is not necessarily the best, it's excellent for a smartphone camera as said in pretty much every smartphone review of this phone.
    Reply
  • djsvetljo - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    Well, he was calling it the best phone, "excellent for a smartphone " that people use mostly to take pictures for instagram an FB ...hm...wait a second, what's wrong here Reply
  • michael2k - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    What's wrong is that you won't read the article. Reply
  • vFunct - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    There really isn't a better cameraphone than the iPhone.

    I haven't read any review that said any camera was better than the iPhone.
    Reply
  • artificialintel - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    I certainly have read such reviews. There's quite a number of camera phones that are significantly better at taking pictures than an iPhone could possibly be, because they attach the phone to basically a full consumer-level quick shot camera with vastly larger apertures, optical zoom, etc. The iPhone has a very good camera, arguably the best of its kind, but I've definitely read reviews that said other cameras were better. Reply
  • V900 - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    Oh yeah, how can we forget about all the phones with optical zoom out there! Like the ehm... Ehm. Could you name one? Samsung made one a few years ago think!

    The whole concept of camera-phones doesn't really make sense anyways.

    The best smartphone cameras, like the iPhone and a few competitors, can come close to the kind of pictures you get with a dedicated point and shoot camera, but cellphones will never take pictures as good as a dedicated camera. (Not unless they more or less jam a phone into a camera!) Any photographer will tell you that.

    It's not something that can be solved with bigger or better sensors, it's a matter of physics. Cameras suck up photons in the form of light, the more the better the picture. And the tiny lens in a smartphone will never be able to compete with a dedicated camera, with lenses many times bigger.
    Reply
  • Shadow7037932 - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    Oh, are you talking about the DxOMark rating? No one knows exactly how they derive those ratings. Reply
  • halcyon - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    DXOMark's weighting algorithm is much more public than any of this subjective hand-waving that passes for "testing" even here at Anandtech:

    http://www.dxomark.com/Reviews/Detailed-computatio...
    http://www.dxomark.com/About/In-depth-measurements...
    http://www.dxomark.com/About/Lens-scores/DxOMark-S...

    Sorry, but for camera tests. Anandtech is NOT the place. Not even smartphone camera tests.
    Reply
  • vFunct - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    Which is why you should never trust DXOMark, because quality is supposed to be subjective.

    A good critic is better than an algorithm.
    Reply
  • vFunct - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    You never judge a photo by how many numbers it adds up to. You shouldn't just a camera that way either.

    People that think camera quality is an objective experience don't know anything about photography and cameras.
    Reply
  • dangerzone - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    "Professionals have reviewed the camera really poorly"

    Hardly. It's no longer the top smartphone camera, that's a true and fair statement because the top Android phones have come out swinging with cameras this year. But pretty much every review still calls it great.
    Reply
  • daveedvdv - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    Also, in a "blind evaluation test" on an Android news site the iPhone 6S was preferred against a crop of modern Android cameras. (http://www.androidauthority.com/blind-camera-shoot...

    That's just one survey, but its bias was certainly no pro-iPhone.
    Reply
  • IanHagen - Wednesday, November 04, 2015 - link

    Would you be so kind and post some sort of source for the allegedly professional review that deemed the iPhone camera as really poor? I'll be waiting by the sea. Reply
  • hlovatt - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    Fantastic review, particularly liked the deep dive on the CPU.

    It must be hard to ignore the nasty comments some people make because you don't like their favourite phone as much as some other brand. Rest assured that their are many more people who appreciate your efforts than those who seem to have way too much invested in their choice of phone.
    Reply
  • FunBunny2 - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    -- * Especially the SoC

    So, yes or no (and show your work): the Apple Ax processors are modified ARM ref. devices simply by adding off-the-shelf functionality available to any engineer with an HDL/CAD/etc. workstation? Seems so from all the various descriptions, here and elsewhere.
    Reply
  • extide - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    No they are clean sheet implementations of the ARM v8 instruction set. No off the shelf ARM Cortex CPU is even remotely similar, they are all much narrower designs. This chip is honestly designed more like an Intel Core CPU than an ARM one. Too bad you can only get it in an iPhone :( Reply
  • Byte - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    Im a hardcore MS hore and hate Apple. But their iPhones cannot be beat. Android STILL feels like Windows Mobile phone which I i've used years before smartphone was a thing, starting with Palms. I'm a bit disappointed with the new camera, but pictures still look better on an iPhone than S6 even with Samsungs far superior screens. Android only had a short uptick when iPhones were stuck in the low screen sizes, but now Apples stronghold is insane. It will only take a paradigm shift from actual phones to challenge that, which might be very soon. Reply
  • pliablemoosethebanned - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    Ignore the idiots, great review guys. Reply
  • Caliko - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    With Apple's track record,

    You have a better chance building a snowman in hell than get them to pay you for something.
    Reply
  • Alexey291 - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    So you're implying that they forfeit their marketing contracts? I'm just asking because you seem to be the resident apple expert here Reply
  • Bragabondio - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    I guess, to avoid comments like the above you guys need to state in the summary if you are using Iphone, Android or s/g else as a daily driver.
    The idea is that all of us have our preferences and biases but sometimes when we like an ecosystem (or if we were more familiar with a particular ecosystem) we made decision on what is important to review based on personal preferences and biases. For example, I like a lot a CNET review of the new Apple TV where the author immediately stated he is an Android guy. So when at the end he gave it an overall score of 4 out of 5, people who are into Apple ecosystem are aware that the product was reviewed by somebody who may have different expectations about what a streamer/casual game machine should do compared to them.
    I guess most of you guys from Anandtech are into Apple so it is difficult to find somebody who can provide an alternative angle but at least you can state where you are coming from.
    The SoC of the new Iphones may be great but if I can paraphrase the Russian proverb it is not the SoC alone that makes the phone great.
    Reply
  • jospoortvliet - Wednesday, November 04, 2015 - link

    Well didn't the author write his daily phone is a HTC One M7? And compare the iPhone with it at some points? I have the One as well and he said the right things - looks like Apple has simply done a great job on almost every front. Reply
  • IanHagen - Wednesday, November 04, 2015 - link

    Oh mate, don't bother yourself over all this tripe. Anandtech are really outstanding when it comes to reviewing devices. Some people dislike some brands and will take offence at those brands doing good. Reply
  • zeeBomb - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    >Finishes Reading Review
    >Sees Final Words
    >Sees Anandtech Gold Accolade medal

    DAYUM. If I remember correctly, I havent seen that given out since the HTC One review!!!
    Reply
  • 980Ti - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    Technically it trumps everything in benchmarks so it is the best. But I know benchmarks aren't everything.. The iPhone 6S has the best apps store, best camera, best build quality, a great screen (the note 5 is better), best developer support, best in battery efficiency, and the list goes on. Reply
  • ASEdouardD - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    These are not perfect phones, the 6s especially, with its pretty low resolution display and worse battery life than the Plus, could be better on these fronts, but they're clearly among the best. Reply
  • 980Ti - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    The low resolution display is fine for the size, I cant see individual pixels but I can see why some would want higher resolution. The battery lasts me a day and a half with light usage (calling, texting, camera, alien blue). Gaming is the only thing that drains battery significantly for me. Reply
  • FunBunny2 - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    -- Gaming is the only thing that drains battery significantly for me.

    We measure a phone by its ability to play games??? Mao was right; Americans are decadent fatsos.
    Reply
  • 980Ti - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    You dont play video games? What year is this?? Reply
  • FunBunny2 - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    Umm... I'd rather read a book. You know, the kind with paper pages and a spine. Reply
  • Alexey291 - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    Books have become boring. No offense but if you can't work out the plot the ending and the delivery of anything remotely fiction-like (quite a lot of non fiction too) after 50 or so pages you clearly don't read enough. Reply
  • IanHagen - Wednesday, November 04, 2015 - link

    Or maybe you should consider picking your books better. Reply
  • IanHagen - Wednesday, November 04, 2015 - link

    I read on my phone all the time. It's great to have my library in my pocket and being relieved of carrying heavy books wherever I go. Reply
  • Caliko - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    A higher resolution wouldn't make a difference(besides pleasing spec junkies). Reply
  • jospoortvliet - Wednesday, November 04, 2015 - link

    Of course it would. Putting my HTC One m7 next to the latest iPhone shows the latter has simply less crisp text. The screen is awesome besides that but don't go and deny it has almost the same resolution as the cheap Moto G I bought for my wife... Just as it has taken Apple a long time to finally deliver a larger screen (though with a bang) and just as they keep sporting ridiculous bezels, the low resolution is both factual and a noticeable compromise. I suspect they just have a too rigid ecosystem of apps which is not build for responsive screen sizes, unlike Android.

    Of course it doesn't make the 6s any less amazing as a phone, it might not be the best on every aspect but it is very close and seems well deserving of the gold. Too bad it is an Apple product, closed off and locked down. The day I can just plug a normal USB cable in and it will present itself as a normal USB storage device to my OS (Linux), and I can replace all proprietary cloud services with my own, switch app store and use open source apps I might consider it. Until then - thanks but no thanks.
    Reply
  • Caliko - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    You're so full of it. The resolution is beyond what your eyes can distinguish.

    I can't believe in 2015 I STILL have to explain this. Feels like 2006 again....
    Reply
  • Alexey291 - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    Nope you're really really wrong. And yes in 2014 people even at apple realised that 330ppi is too little. They are just you know... Behind... Reply
  • lurker22 - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    Or, it could be that the phone is really the best right now... maybe if android manufacturers would agree to stop abandoning their devices they would get more "bests." Something I noticed about android people, you're constantly whining whenever someone says the iPhone is a fantastic device.

    I have a Nexus 7, its ok, but wow is it not smooth or easy to maintain...i ended up installing a task manager to just get web browser to be somewhat less jerky on large pages.
    Reply
  • SaolDan - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    Come on dude. I dislike apple a lot but that being said they have very good hardware. Software sucks and a iPads i don't see a use for iPads specially the "pro" version specially when u can get a surface pro 4 for the same price but again their SOC are really really fast. im sayting this as someone who looks down on iPhones and iPad. I can respect mac os but IOS is garbage. BTW my work and only phone is a company issued iphone 6 so im not just saying all this. SP4 FTW. Reply
  • ASEdouardD - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    I'd argue that since iOS 8, iOS is very close to Android in terms of functionality, and has the added value of a better App Store. To each his own of course, but I feel the gap between the two OS's is much smaller than it was before. Android's app store is better than it was, and you havec more functionality with iOS than before. Reply
  • SaolDan - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    I lost my faith in android since 4.4. 4.3 was great. My wife got a lumia 1520 and that thing is awesome. Ive seen a few universal apps and they look great in big and small devices. I think that microsoft continuum would be great if it had a x86 SOC inside. I used to own a lumia 635 and i miss it so much. Reply
  • zeeBomb - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    Soon ill get my hands on one. Reply
  • blackcrayon - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    I bet it goes further than you think. I bet Anandtech is paying Huawei and Samsung or maybe has undercover agents at Qualcomm to make sure their SOCs perform more slowly than Apple's. It's the only way to explain it!

    You're so enraged and deluded that you can't see how something that is pretty much universally agreed as "one of the best" could possible be "the best" in someone's opinion (an opinion backed up by a uniquely large amount of test data I should add).
    Reply
  • osxandwindows - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    You and your conspiracy theories.
    lol
    So what other conspiracy theories do you have about anandtech
    Reply
  • blackcrayon - Wednesday, November 04, 2015 - link

    Maybe Apple injected code into Webkit (that's also in Chrome and that Microsoft and Mozilla also copied unbeknownst to them) that makes any bar graph showing iPhone performance to have longer lines! Except when smaller lines are better, then it makes them shorter. :) Reply
  • melgross - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    Maybe because it actually is the best, despite what Android users want to think. Reply
  • zeeBomb - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    the fight between android and apple will never end. Reply
  • itpromike - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    Paid? That is a very dangerous and very serious accusation for a publication such as Anandtech which does scientific and objective chip architectural analysis as well as benchmarks and performance measurements. You are suggesting that Apple is literally giving them money to lie to all of their readers and to willingly change benchmark results AND architectural analysis, including forging SOC cross section pictures (also implicating chip works of being equally fraudulent and deceitful)? You are truly saying that Apple is paying Anandtech to publish falsified results, with Anandtech having no integrity at all? WOW. That is a BOLD BOLD claim. I'd love to see your journalistic proof of this. Do you have links to bank statements, written contracts, emails, phone conversation recordings, etc... that we all can look at so we can make sure the public is aware that Anandtech writers, and analysts are liars? Or can you share with us your deep examination and analysis of the page by page writings and findings in the review in contrast to your on findings that you've spent hours on end testing and analyzing? This way none of their readers will mistake them for being an honest, data driven publication. Just go ahead and link to your findings in the reply to this message. Thanks Reply
  • Alexey291 - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    Er are you sure you're not confusing anandtech from half a dozen years ago with a marketing publication with the same name in the now? Reply
  • shadowii - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    Wow, what a worthless reply. Read the article. Reply
  • KoolAidMan1 - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    Anandtech backed up their conclusion with pages and pages of objective tests and analysis. This bothers you so you accuse them of being paid shills.

    Standard Fandroid in the wild, ladies and gentlemen.
    Reply
  • Ethos Evoss - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    Yeah and final words section like wtitting a bokk !!! Fkin never seen end so long like this..
    The whole review - aplle bible.. anandtech had to follow apples bible......
    Reply
  • akdj - Wednesday, November 04, 2015 - link

    You should read 'long pages' like the "Final Words" section more often. Help on your spelling as well as getting your ...a point across Reply
  • tuxRoller - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    Read the review.
    I'm not an apple "fan", but it's clear they have, BY FAR, the best hardware in a phone that you can buy (storage, battery, cpu, memory, gpu).
    While it's true this was an off year for android soc (thanks Qualcomm), that even highlights all the more the massive improvement this phone is over last year's.
    Reply
  • Caliko - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    Apple is notorious for NOT sharing a penny for media/reviews/placements.

    You just sound silly to those in the know. Almost funny.
    Reply
  • Bfree4me - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    @djsvetljo Kudos to Anand tech for another very thorough review done on the venerable iPhone, but I think that you may have a point. After reading this review, I went back and looked at the Galaxy NOTE 5/Edge review published 4 weeks ago and could not for the life of me find a similar exhaustive analysis of the Octa Core ® CPU that the Korean maker deploys. No pictures of the SOC or GPU. But hey, they are not obligated to so either. But good points nonetheless. Reply
  • jospoortvliet - Wednesday, November 04, 2015 - link

    That SOC/core was extensively reviewed in earlier articles and a known quantity... Reply
  • NYU87 - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    You didn't even read the review? Jesus Fandroids are more retarded than I thought. Reply
  • Infy2 - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    While iPhone 6s may be full of engineering triumphs and technological marvels, apart from 3D Touch, I don't believe it will make much difference in normal day-to-day use compared to older iPhones. Reply
  • NEDM64 - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    Exactly. Hence the name: iPhone 6S (S for speed, not 7), and the ZERO exterior design changes.

    It's a phone you buy when you buy new.
    Reply
  • ASEdouardD - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    For the 6s, I don't feel it changes much of anything. The 6 Plus though had some trouble having smooth animations across the board with transparency on (Apple annoys me with their obsession with non necessary transparency effects that slow down phones and laptops for no good reasons). With the 6s Plus everything is smooth and snappy. Reply
  • CBone - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    What good is all this power when everything runs and looks the same at the same resolution? I would have liked actual measues of real differences. 52 seconds to install vs 30 seconds on the 6s, 12 seconds to edit convert and transfer vs 13 on the 6s, etc. We already know that the usual benchmarks and SoC specs will be heavily in favor of the new phone but the actual use is nearly the exact same experience aside from hardware enabled changes like camera hardware changes and 3d touch and artificial differentiation like live photos and siri. It would be nice to explore a little further than canned benches for those aspects. Reply
  • bill.rookard - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    Hmm... Page 4, Geekbench 3 scores, WHICH one is the A9 column? Reply
  • Ryan Smith - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    Whoops. Thanks. Reply
  • batongxue - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    Seriousfuckingfinally Reply
  • jjj - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    It's not even a contender for the best even if you exclude the price.
    You make Huge efforts to not test or mention at all any missing functionality or area where it performs poorly.
    The screen is low res, the SoC benchmarks are all synthetic and dubious (we are not in the 90s anymore, move forward already)., a battery test that has nothing to do with real world usage, the camera resolution s fully ignored, motion blur (the biggest problem for users) has never been tested, the touch is missing a bunch of must have features, LTE is just cat 6, the RAM is very little. And lets not forget signal strength , god forbid you would ever mention how terrible iphones are there.
    No microSD, the cost of extra storage, proprietary connections, the limitations of the software all ignored because you got old and fat and sold out tho the marketing hype.
    15 years ago you would laugh at people like you, irrational and lazy as you got. You are like the people that used to buy prebuilt gaming PCs at 2-3x the price and thought they were cool and smart.
    Reply
  • djsvetljo - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    2 of us so far.

    Again, Anandtech is a great place but whenever Apple articles pops up, I am ashamed I like/follow this site.
    Reply
  • Global - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    I'm sorry. The problem here is not the review or Apple. The problem here is yourself! Reply
  • djsvetljo - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    I know that. Sometimes I wish I was stupid, without my own opinion of things, being able to follow leaders and put had down or with one word - sheep. But I am not.

    (sorry but you started it).
    Reply
  • djsvetljo - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    Head* Reply
  • Chaser - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    djsvetljo, go bury your shame elsewhere. Maybe one of the millions of Blackberry review sites. Reply
  • zeeBomb - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    go tell em Chaser! Reply
  • NEDM64 - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    It's fine to have an opinion.

    It's not fine to want to censor this site's opinion.
    Reply
  • djsvetljo - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    How exactly I censor this site's opinion? Reply
  • SaolDan - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    +1 and i hate apple but NED is right. Reply
  • ToastyFlake - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    You sure sound like a sheep. I read this same bleating all the time from fanboy sheep like yourself. Reply
  • 980Ti - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    You're the one who still uses a blackberry. Redirect your insults to yourself! Reply
  • bhaberle - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    You are intentionally here to troll. What you want to look at is a spec sheet and not a review. You have your own conclusions and don't want anything else to stray even one word from them. I don't understand why you go to review websites if you don't want to read a review. Reply
  • IanHagen - Wednesday, November 04, 2015 - link

    Well mate, you're basing your opinions on your refusal to read the article. I bet you don't have to wish any longer. Reply
  • toukale - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    Don't point the obvious here, Apple can't possibly have anything good associate with it. Great success always bring about jealousy and envy from everywhere. Reply
  • comomolo - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    Actually three of us. I simply don't bother anymore trying to argue against the Apple religion. I bet there's a lot of people like us, they simply couldn't care less. (Just signed in to support you. I'm a regular Anandtech reader but usually skip on Apple reviews.) Reply
  • BabelHuber - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    Four :-)

    I need rSAP, and Apple doesn't support this. Alternatively, I could mess around with an extra SIM card in my car, but why would I?

    Also, I don't buy phones with a locked bootloader which cannot be unlocked, I don't by phones without SD-card support and without direct file system access. And if possible I want one which has a removable battery.

    For all others, the iPhone may be the best phone out there, but for use cases like mine it'S not even an option, even if iz has the fastest SoC.
    Reply
  • HotdogPercolator - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    All of your "needs" are mine as well and I do them on a Jailbroken iPhone. I'm sorry if you're not smart enough to look past obstacles, but everything Androids do the iPhone can do just as well. Stop holding yourself back from a great experience. Branch out! Reply
  • BabelHuber - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    How did you install rSAP-drivers on your iPhone? How did you unlock the bootloader? Can you install a different OS?

    Where do you put SD-cards in?
    Reply
  • JLiRD808 - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    Wow...we're sorry if you think your jailbroken iphone can do what a rooted android can do. While you have access to some apps that allow some customization, Android has that AND allows the OS to be completely tweaked and even swapped out! And Google encourages it!

    Can you even customize your CPU speed? Oh wait! You can speed up your animations so it LOOKS LIKE your CPU is operating faster lol. Nice one :P

    Not that it matters, 90% of iphone 6s buyers are doing the same thing they were doing on their iphone 4/5.....Instagram, Facebook, the occasional game or two. Things'll be a few milliseconds snappier, sure. They'll only use "Live Photos" once or twice since it takes up extra storage. I give Apple credit for getting average users to drop big dollars on premium devices--they're truly amazing sheep-herders, and getting richer by the minute.
    Reply
  • zeeBomb - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    Uh but you can change how it performs tho... Reply
  • blackcrayon - Wednesday, November 04, 2015 - link

    "Can you even customize your CPU speed?"
    LOL, so you can go from "slower than the best", to "even slower" to make up for the heat, battery life, and nosediving-performance-over-time compromises at the stock speed? Sounds really enviable!
    Reply
  • tuxRoller - Friday, November 06, 2015 - link

    That doesn't take processor variation into account.
    If you can stably undervolt your processor, you only gain battery life. Likewise, if you can overclock it and keep the voltages in check you see battery gains from race to idle
    Reply
  • mikhapop - Monday, December 14, 2015 - link

    yeah, a lot of us are tired of arguing apple fans, the iphone can't stand my needs (advanced or not).
    1- Install iTunes to connect my phone to pc
    2- Very low RAM (stupid tabs refreshing)
    3- Very low resolution screen
    4- No stylus for taking notes (i have a note 4)
    5- Can't tweak the system (playing with kernels to get better battery life or performance when needed)
    6- Can't run advanced systems that i need them (a web development & linux specific systems)

    the only thing i like about the latest iphones is the style (i like the way these phones look) but i think also the s6 edge is equally as good looking if not better.
    Reply
  • JLiRD808 - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    I think we're at "6 +" now supporting you lol Reply
  • blackcrayon - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    Congratulations for encapsulating your total lack of knowledge of technology in such a clear, concise paragraph. Extra "expert" points for "the RAM is very little"... Reply
  • Macman2288 - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    "SoC benchmarks are all synthetic and dubious" - so how would you test performance? This site is a benchmark site, that is what they do. If you hate benchmarks maybe this site is not for you.

    "camera resolution s fully ignored, motion blur (the biggest problem for users) has never been tested" - you must not have read the article, motion blurr, image resolution, and video quality were all explored and displayed fairly for the reader to see.

    "LTE is just cat 6" - 8-/ i have no words

    "And lets not forget signal strength , god forbid you would ever mention how terrible iPhones are there" - are you talking about the iPhone 4? iPhones have the same chips and antenna designs as most other smart phones and appear to perform as well as more android phones.

    "15 years ago you would laugh at people like you, irrational and lazy as you got." - You just described yourself today.

    Yes my name says it all, I do enjoy apple products, but if was going to bash an article I would try to be a little more convincing. I have seen way better arguments for not buying an iPhone then what you displayed.
    Reply
  • RealityMonster - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    SIGH.

    The screen isn't 'low res'. The pixels on most Android phones are superfluous. They burn power and you can't see them at normal viewing distances anyway. The extra pixels aren't doing you any good. They're harder on the battery AND the GPU.

    The SOC benchmarks are 100% consistent with every other benchmark I've ever seen anywhere. Per clock, the A9 is just the best SOC that exists right now. They really do have incredibly good chip designers working at Apple--Apple bought up a bunch of companies that mattered years ago and everyone was confused until they started cranking out stuff like this. I challenge you to create a real-world test where the A9 doesn't outperform its counterparts. Do you have any evidence to show that the SOC are somehow invalid?

    The camera resolution is one of the least important things about the camera, and I wish everyone would stop banging on about the number of megapixels in phone cameras because it really just makes you look like you don't know what you're talking about. You know what other camera has a 12MP sensor? My Nikon D3s. If you try to tell me that a higher resolution sensor in a phone somewhere would take better pictures than my D3s, even if we somehow leveled the playing field in terms of lenses, you'll be laughed out of the room.

    2GB of RAM is not the same sort of limitation under iOSs as it is under Android. The nature of virtual machines and garbage collection under Android means that you need a lot more wiggle room for the OS to function optimally.

    I can't speak to how 'must have' faster LTE is (it's not, to me). My phone application sits in a folder on my second screen. It's so unimportant, it shares the folder with TimeHop. While it's a fair criticism that some people may care about that sort of thing, the 'phone' function of my iPhone is honestly almost an afterthought.

    No micro SD is common across smartphones, and I would consider having it something that you would grade other phones UP for as a nice option, rather than grading any phone without it down. The cost of extra storage is a fair cop; 16GB devices shouldn't even exist anymore, especially if you're going to make each photo take up twice as much space by default, and let the device record 4k video. The proprietary connector is a BETTER connector, but has no real bearing on anything. You get a cable with the phone, they're cheap to buy if you need more. It's the lamest of complaints.

    If you want an iOS 9 review, that's something else. This is a review of the iPhone 6s(+). The limitations of the software aren't meaningful when discussion the build of the hardware.
    Reply
  • toukale - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    Why would anyone be shocked at this point. And with the iPad Pro around the corner, Apple have cemented themselves at the best mobile design house on the planet. I never though I would be writing those words a few years ago. Reply
  • Chaser - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    I know what you mean. I recently had the opportunity to purchase a new tablet. Phone wise I have been an Android man for years. But tablet wise I did my research and the iPad Air 2 has no competition. It is a quick and easy go to device that a a tablet should be with unparalleled development. can't believe I am saying that today. Can't believe i bought one but for a tablet, I love it! Reply
  • jospoortvliet - Wednesday, November 04, 2015 - link

    I wouldn't go for an Apple tablet actually. I'd buy a much lighter Sony, I think. But the 6s - I really hope the Android ecosystem gets its act together next year so I can buy a successor to my m7. Reply
  • duploxxx - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    love the final words. This phone does excel in every possible theoretical benchmark there is :) Uber usage of nand (sequential....), power consumption, graphics etc and mainly ............ price.

    But then you take the reality benches and final results of real measurable tools and then its all up and downs with other devices out there. Not to mention that optimized IOS sw ends when the apple device is +2y old. it becomes a forced sluggish replacement.

    looking at those results, knowing the price of this device it does not come even close to being gold. it should be silver just by the fact of its high price tag. Reality shows that for example the One plus being "old device" with a good balanced pricetag and nice performance scores in most testing is a way better bargain then this piece of fruit. Yeah you can use it as a scale. Its just forcetouch requirement because of the lack of IOS buttons and features. after owning 2 apples, never again for me.
    Reply
  • V900 - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    LOLOLOL!

    Of course.. When the tests and benchmarks put the new (AS WELL as last year's iPhone) above all other handsets, There's not much left for you to do, than just make up some arguments against iPhones.

    Like that "optimized software ends after two years". Sure you can't use the newest features on your old phone.

    But where Android handsets rarely see updates after a year, and usually get too slow and crufty for everyday use after two years, you see iPhones get updates for 3-5 years after release, and be perfectly fine and fast for their purpose.

    My friends 10 year old son just got his 6 year old iPhone 3GS for his first phone. When was the last time you saw a 6 year old Android handset in use?

    Heck, when was the last time you saw a 2-3 year old Android phone in use, that delivered a bearable performance?

    Compare that with the tens and hundreds of 4-5 year old iPhone 4/5s that you see everyday still in use, and almost as zippy as when they came out? You get what you pay for.
    Reply
  • darkich - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    "Heck, when was the last time you saw a 2-3 year old Android phone in use, that delivered a bearable performance?"

    Now that is such aa ridiculous load of BS right there.
    How about you read the first paragraph of the review and then inform yourself on how old the HTC one M7 is.

    I myself feel the same as the author, having a 2 year old Note 3.
    Nothing released so far makes me want to invest in a new device since the Note 3 still serves me remarkably well.
    Heck, it actually performs BETTER than it did when it was new!
    There were some issues with the transition from kitkat to Lollipop, probably because of the application needing time to optimize for ART.
    But now, everything is a breeze.
    I bought a new battery 3 months ago, and even that part (battery endurance) is better now than it was when my phone was brand new!

    What makes that that more impressive is the fact that I'm actually using 100% out of my phone, having over hundred apps on it and doing stuff you wouldn't believe we're possible on a pocketable device - using it as a pc replacement, even for video editing and 3D modelling.
    If you want evidence, just let me know.
    Reply
  • V900 - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    Why would a higher price than a mid-grade One+ detract from the score?!?

    You do understand that most markets are divided into low end, middle and highend? Right?

    Android phones exclusively rule the low end, most of the mid end, and little of the high end.

    Since the iPhone is a premium product, regularly reviewed as the best on the market, naturally it has a higher price than a mid end One+ that doesn't deliver close to the premium experience an iPhone does.

    Would you also insist a BMW has to have a score deducted, because it's more expensive than a Kia?!?
    Reply
  • krumme - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    What about weight??
    6s plus is between a note 5 and 8 inch tab s2 !
    Its a brick. Nokia style.
    And the little comment about contrast is imo not consistent with real world experience.
    Wait untill apple gets oled and the tone will shift.
    Uncritical review.
    Reply
  • iSeptimus - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    Been waiting for this review. Always interesting to see this sites in depth reviews, for any phone.

    Lot of butt hurt Android users in the comments already. Is it really so bad that it's a good phone?
    Reply
  • Alexey291 - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    To be fair one guy threw a troll post (which in fairness pointed out the obvious 'it almost feels like magic cringer) and then the apple defence brigade sprung to action for 15 pages...

    Who out of those is butthurt? You decide :)
    Reply
  • osxandwindows - Saturday, April 23, 2016 - link

    He claims anandtech is being paid, which is a completely baseless argument.

    How you can defend someone like that is be on me.
    Reply
  • Mbonus - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    Paging Mr. Brian Klug, Mr. Brian Klug..... Are you there????

    Man I miss the good old days when Bran was handling this stuff....
    Reply
  • zeeBomb - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    Yeah I feel you. I wonder where he is now. Reply
  • Kevin G - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    From what I recall, he's working for the same company as Anand himself: Apple. Reply
  • Gigaplex - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    Only a couple of sentences in and I find myself in complete agreement:

    "For whatever reason, phones have either stood still or regressed when it comes to overall quality."

    Exactly. The Galaxy and Note lines are especially disappointing.

    "There are a few stand-outs that have been worth talking about like the Galaxy S6 lineup and the Galaxy Note5 lineup"

    Wait, what?
    Reply
  • jospoortvliet - Wednesday, November 04, 2015 - link

    Well, the S6 had its downsides but you can't call it standing still. Top notch camera and SOC, finally a design that looks like a phone worth paying for. Not very practical (i will never buy a phone with a glass back) but pretty. Reply
  • R. Hunt - Wednesday, November 04, 2015 - link

    Yes, slippery as hell, unfortunately. But it feels really well built, really solid. Reply
  • tipoo - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    Apples SoC lead is almost scary. 3MB L2 and 8MB L3 in a phone is insanity, which they can pull off because they know they're going to sell a high volume high margin product wrapped around the SoC. Reply
  • toukale - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    Not if you have been following what's going on in this area. Apple is not the place where the top SOC engineers wants go, not Intel, AMD etc... When top talents in any area wants to go work for you, then good things will follow. Reply
  • toukale - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    Damn, "Now." Reply
  • Kevin G - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    Not only is it enough to scare all other ARM SoC's but Intel has to be frighten by what Apple's engineers are capable of. Normalizing for clock speeds, it seems that the A9 is around Sandy/Ivy Bridge IPC and now with FinFET, there is a clock speed overlap with those chips as well. Intel has two newer generations of core designs (Haswell and Sky Lake) but they don't offer huge leaps over Sandy Bridge/Ivy Bridge. I'm really, really curious how the A9X in the iPad Pro will perform against various Core M designs in tablets. It is very conceivable that Apple could take the performance crown.

    Against low power i3/i5/i7 Sky Lake chips, Intel should still have performance lead. Granted those chips have a higher power budget it but it makes me wonder what Apple could pull off with a similar power budget.

    As for the A9 itself, it is a very solid improvement and there is still room to grow. My personal prediction for the A9, SMT, appears to be absent. Considering the width of the A9 design, there should be some performance gains. Certainly while running in a 4T2C mode, power consumption will be higher, 2T1C should be lower power than 2T2C.

    My predictions for the A10? I'm still sticking to the idea that SMT in Apple's CPU designs make sense so there is that. 4 MB of L2 cache and 12 MB of L3 cache are natural evolutions of their current topology. The GPU will core to an 8 core Rogue 7 design. The real SoC change will be in the memory subsystem with Apple adopting WideIO. I predict that the iPhone 7 will be the first product to drop the lightning connector and offer a USB Type-C port so USB and DisplayPort block will be included in the next iteration.
    Reply
  • aliasfox - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    While Intel should be worried about the performance Apple's SoC engineers are capable of, what they should really be worried about is price. Sure, Apple might only offer 75% of the performance of a ULV Core chip, but when it comes at 20-30% of the price, that's serious competition. Reply
  • Kevin G - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    There is the whole dichotomy of Apple being an end product supplier with the iPhone/iPad vs. Intel being a parts supplier. There is also the difference that Apple needs a third party to manufacture the A9 chip where as Intel does this in house. Intel is more of a middle man here and thus inflates the end cost of the OEM handsets and tablets. Intel can make the same amount of profit if they were able to spur volume sales but that trade off has never appealed much to Intel who historically enjoyed healthy margins on component pricing. Reply
  • name99 - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    Guys, it's time to stop this pretense that Apple is "almost" at Intel performance.
    Apple IPC has exceeded the best Intel has to offer by about 15%.
    (gcc SPEC)
    A9 vs haswell = 3148/1.85 / 4800/3.3 = 1.16
    http://gcc.opensuse.org/SPEC/CINT/sb-czerny-head-6...
    i5-4670T boost 3.3G ~4800

    Or compare against the Broadwell in a MacBook:
    https://browser.primatelabs.com/geekbench3/compare...
    (Note that while the Bwell is nominally at 1.3GHz, Geekbench is short enough that it can turbo at 2.9GHz)

    With the A7 Apple got an "inner" core that was equal to the best Intel has to offer. With the A9 they now have an uncore that matches Intel (look at all the memory dependent benchmarks in the Geekbench comparison above, things like Sobel, Sharpen, and FFT --- Apple now matches Intel pretty much exactly).

    The only place where Apple still lags behind Intel (as far as the mobile space is concerned) is turbo-ing (ie an accurate on-SoC thermal model that allows parts of the SoC to run faster than rated up until the thermal budget is exceeded).
    This does not necessarily mean that turbo is the feature Apple will implement next. There are other directions they could go which provide (in their opinion) a better tradeoff, at least for now, than turbo'ing. Possibilities include
    - het core (add a low power low performance core. This sounds like big.LITTLE, but done right. The core selection and switching is done by a dedicated microcontroller which is tracking various CPU statistics like branch mispredictions and cache misses and using those to decide which core to use. The OS only sees one CPU; the het core is purely an internal implementation detail.
    Done right papers suggest this can buy you about 20% power reduction.)

    - KIP (kilo-instruction processor). A set of ideas that extend OoO from its current ability to tolerate latency out to L3, but not all the way to RAM, all the way out to RAM. This requires a ROB of size 1000 or so, and numerous modifications to allow the physical register set and load-store queues to match this size.

    - post-rename loop buffer. Places the loop buffer not just after fetch, not just after decode, but all the way after rename. Requires various modifications (to handle the "frozen" renaming) but capable of a nice drop in power whenever executing out of the loop buffer.

    Apart from starting down these paths, the obvious visible change for the A10 would appear to be that they
    - drop 32-bit support (which should probably allow them to drop at least one pipeline stage, and simplify the decoder substantially)
    - add support for the ARMv8.1a instructions.

    SMT is (IMHO) a low priority for Apple. They can add more cores faster than they can design in SMT, and area won't be a critical constraint until the Moore's law scaling party stops.
    Reply
  • vFunct - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    They basically already have big.LITTLE with their M9 co-processor. Reply
  • doggface - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    I'm sorry but no. Your geekbench scores mean nothing. Intel still has quite the lead. Otherwise Apple Mac book Pros would be using Apple SOCs.

    Apple will find that all the easy gains in CPU ipc/clocks are disappearing and like intel will struggle to make speed improvements beyond a certain level. Then chip cost will start going up. It is inevitable, it is physics.

    All that aside. The A9 is impressive. Kudos to Apple.
    Reply
  • IanHagen - Wednesday, November 04, 2015 - link

    Whilst I agree mostly with you, the MacBook Pros don't sporting an Apple SoC is IMHO proof of nothing. The migration will be very costly and will brake compatibility with a ton of software. They can't simply slap a nice ARM chip on that thing and call it a day. Reply
  • DerekZ06 - Wednesday, November 04, 2015 - link

    Switching architecture on the Mac book pros is like going from powerpc to x86 all over again. Reply
  • gonsolo - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    Interesting. Can you quote some of the mentioned papers? Reply
  • Gigaplex - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    On the other hand, Jim Keller no longer works at Apple. He is the mastermind behind Apples architecture. Reply
  • zeeBomb - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    Oh man...when was his departure? Who's the lead now? Reply
  • NBvdB - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    Jim Keller left in 2012. That hasn't seemed to stop Apple from continuing to make huge steps forward since then. Current Chief CPU design is Gerard Williams. Reply
  • iwod - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    Let state a few things.
    Next SoC aka A10 will not have 12MB Cache. And not 8 Core GPU. Because both of this assumption increase die size and therefore what you are suggesting is Apple jumping to 10nm. Which isn't available to tape out until late 2016 and ready for 2017 iPhone.
    The A10 is pretty much set, going to be produced by TSMC 16nm FFC, current A9 is 16nm FF+. 16nm FFC is likely to get 10 - 15% performance / watt while being cheaper to produce. Assuming Apple could further tweak its GPU and CPU, so we really should only expect 20% improvement in next iteration. Which is still a very very good number.

    The A11, which will get the TSMC 10nm die shrink, will likely get another major architecture change, so the Quad Core, or 2 Core SMT as well as 8 core GPU design will likely end up there. The 8 Core GPU as well as the frequency improvement with 10nm will / should force Apple to upgrade their Memory bandwidth. The industry is still trying to figure out where to go next. LPDDR5 , which is not even a standard yet has been bought up recently, since Wide I/O 2 still has its problem and challenges. I am not sure if this can be solved in time for A11, if not Apple will likely just choose a faster LPDDR4 instead.

    I will love to see a comparison between Apple SoC and Intel Skylake. But I think the A9x with 4 Core will be a better comparison to Intel 2C4T design. Let's hope Anandtech will do that in their iPad Pro review.
    Reply
  • zeeBomb - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    I have a feeling though apple can do it. A 10nm process...mobile tech sure evolved nowadays. Reply
  • Alexey291 - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    They have nothing to do with actual manufacturing process. Neither does manufacturing process have anything to do with mobile tech.

    On the whole your comment made my eyes bleed.
    Reply
  • paulwb - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    well deserved editors choice for the 6s amazed to see that the article didnt stress enough that it was the hardware advancements done by the android OEM that pushed apple to fight back with these high specs and full feature S versions...loved the review Reply
  • Kevin G - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    Typo:
    "In order to test how this storage solution performs, we Eric Patno’s storage test which allows for a simple storage test comparable to AndroBench 3.6."

    I think you accidentally the word 'used' in that sentence (unless Eric Patno is a verb).
    Reply
  • vastac13 - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    Now, we need the Nexus 6p in-depth review from Anandtech and hopefully we can see a Gold Choice award from Android Camp Reply
  • Brandon Chester - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    Neither Nexus device does anything to meaningfully move the smartphone industry forward. There's a reason the 6s, and prior to it the HTC One (M7) are the devices that received it. Reply
  • danbob999 - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    yeah, because reviewers value aesthetics more than functionality Reply
  • scbundy - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    Some of us don't feel "Living pictures" and Touch 3D are all that revolutionary either. And I agree with the earlier posters, the price should be accounted for when determining the final score. The Nexus 6P in Canada is half the price as an iPhone 6S Plus. So if the device performs well and is well designed, and can hit the price tier that it does, wouldn't you say that does something meaningful to move the smartphone industry forward? Reply
  • RealityMonster - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    No, not really. Lots of phones are being sold cheaply--good phones. That doesn't mean they have anything to contribute, they're just good phones at a low price.

    Cheap cars don't move the car industry forward. It's the expensive ones with new technology--the Mercedes and Teslas--that do. Anti-lock brakes, new drivetrain tech, adaptive headlights, etc., etc. Those all come from cars that are at the very high end, and the tech eventually comes down to the cheaper cars.

    I'm not disparaging the Nexus line--by every account I've read, they're the best Android phones around and they're affordable to boot. But that doesn't mean they're a meaningful step forward in usability or performance.
    Reply
  • deasys - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    There's a good Nexus 6p test here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tTIaUH6PIvo Reply
  • amdwilliam1985 - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    They're only doing 5X review, no 6P. I know man, sigh... Reply
  • Klug4Pres - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    Please quote phone prices on the basis of outright purchase - this site has an international readership, for whom the intricacies of US contract subsidies are completely irrelevant. Reply
  • Ryan Smith - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    Agreed. I've switched them to the off-contract prices. Reply
  • Brandon Chester - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    That was my fault, it was a holdover from the launch chart. In Canada it's actually $399/$529/$659 for the 6s on contract! Reply
  • doggface - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    In Australia these phones cost north of Aud$1000. Or you can get it on a plan for about $100+ a month over 2 years.

    Same with the Samsungs. What a deal breaker.
    Reply
  • zeeBomb - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    A standard 2 year plan for $100 each month...that's a limit-break bank breaker! Reply
  • tipoo - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    I still don't fully understand the performance degradation chart, wouldn't it make more sense to divide the final FPS by the first FPS to see how much it degraded? Device 1 has performance of 100, degrades to 40, device 2 has performance of 60, degrades to 35, device 2 degraded by a smaller percent but still shows lower in the chart because of it's internal performance. Reply
  • Brandon Chester - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    All of these devices throttle down pretty quickly and in most cases that final framerate will be indicative of the performance a user would have seen for the bulk of a time playing a game with that same level of visual quality. It's basically meant to be an indicator of what performance you'd really end up seeing for a prolonged gaming session, rather than a change from peak to typical performance. Reply
  • tipoo - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    I see what you mean, thanks. Reply
  • Brandon Chester - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    I agree that the chart name is terrible. I'll see if we can change it to make more sense. Reply
  • Xell123 - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    "Sustained Performance"? Reply
  • Xell123 - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    Relative degradation (1-) (sustained/burst) is also interesting btw. so you could do 2 diagrams or combine the data. :) Reply
  • tipoo - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    My 6S doesn't do too well in barely dim light. I think 12MP for the same sensor size was a bit of a stretch - maybe 10 would be a happy medium, or just go to the next size up. It gets grainy really fast. Some tests show it worse than the 6 in dim light, but better in daylight. Reply
  • Der2 - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    I was expecting apple to go a measely 10MP so they could kinda maintain that high micron pixel count and whatnot. At least, 8.3mp was needed for 4K recording capability. Reply
  • Brandon Chester - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    No, they need more than 8.3MP to get 4K, it's not a 16:9 sensor. You actually need the 12MP to be able to do EIS, because the horizontal axis is still only 4032 pixels. Reply
  • zeeBomb - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    Ohhhh that's right. Totally got blindsided and forgetting it isn't 4:3. My bad! Reply
  • tipoo - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    Ah, I did not think of that. Everything's a tradeoff in engineering I guess. Daytime shots are great, for low light I guess I have to use flash or else get something grainy. Reply
  • reddealer - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    It would be best to show the actual prices starting at $650 for the iPhone 6s 16GB, no? Reply
  • zeeBomb - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    true. Reply
  • id4andrei - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    You mentioned Gold rating being the 2nd best. What is the best? Platinum? Curious.

    Surely this year's Exynos deserves some mentioning. It turned out the best Android SoC by far and demolished Qualcomm. Was it really that stale as you make it to be?
    Reply
  • ciderrules - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    What's special about the Exynos? It's using ARM reference design cores with very little of the processor design actually attributable to Samsung. Reply
  • tipoo - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    The 14nm process allows it to do more with the same reference cores though. It's benchmarks were certainly good for the time, apart from A9 they're still impressive compared to the rest of the Android camp. Reply
  • zeeBomb - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    yepp! Reply
  • tipoo - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    At the time of the GS6 review that Exynos was certainly complimented. Reply
  • jkdem85 - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    Can someone answers this question? Why does it say second best award? Makes no sense, is there something higher than gold? Reply
  • Ryan Smith - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    Yes, Platinum is our top award. Reply
  • SaolDan - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    Enough about this nonsense. We need a Lumia with a Fast atom or core m for continuum. i think I'm asking for a little too much. Or maybe I'm in the wrong place? Apple= great hardware, horrible software. Reply
  • name99 - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    Atom is a total non-starter. And don't imagine that Core M will buy you that much:
    https://browser.primatelabs.com/geekbench3/compare...
    That's Broadwell (in Macbook) vs A9 (in iPhone 6S+)
    Not that different. It wouldn't be surprising if iPad Pro beats the Broadwell. And if you have to use that Broadwell in a phone rather than a laptop (let alone a tablet) it's going to be running quite a bit slower.
    Reply
  • SaolDan - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    i don't really care about speed. i care about the x86 for continuum. My Atom in my little dell windows tablet does surprisingly well and runs x86 so to me that's worth more than a faster processor that can only run a few things. Reply
  • SaolDan - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    Also benchmarks don really mean anything to me. I can play FF14 or tomb raider in my I3 surface pro 3. Lower/st settings of course but come on that's impressive. Mobile games suck. I have a company issued iPhone 6 and oh how i miss my old lumia 635. My boss is a apple guy so I'm stuck for now. I like apple hardware. Hate IOS. I give credit where credit is due. Reply
  • Gigaplex - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    You do realise that x86 won't help continuum right? You won't be able to run desktop software. Reply
  • SaolDan - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    Thats what im asking for! too much eh? Reply
  • IanHagen - Wednesday, November 04, 2015 - link

    Horrible software? Really? You might dislike iOS, but calling it horrible software made me cringe. Not to mention OS X. What's good software to you? Reply
  • Postulant - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    I'm confused. Some of these phones have 8 cores, yes? How is it the 2 core iPhone out-performs them? Reply
  • ASEdouardD - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    Because per core performance is miles better on the A9, and far from every tasks use all cores. Reply
  • FunBunny2 - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    -- far from every tasks use all cores

    As the parallel computing folks discovered way back in the 80s: there's almost no (modulo some scientific stuff) "task" in common problems that benefits from parallel processing. So, one or two fat cores will beat 8 skinny ones.
    Reply
  • aliasfox - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    It's like how you can have an V8 engine from 1980 that pumps out 170hp, but then have a modern 4-cylinder engine that can put out 200hp.

    Not all cores are the same.
    Reply
  • tipoo - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    Apple went wide, most others went small and high clocked. As it turned out they could not sustain high clocks for longs. Wide, higher instructions per clock at a lower clock is the right way to go.

    Plus those 8 cores are 4 high performance + 4 low power cores, not 8 of the first kind.
    Reply
  • vFunct - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    the 8 core designs have very weak cores.

    Also, most software only use 1 core.
    Reply
  • doggface - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    While those 8 cores are not great.

    Most software on iOS may use 1 core. On Android that statement had proven demonstrably false. I refer you to Anandtech's previous article on the matter. In fact Android regularly uses all 4 cores from big or LITTLE.
    Reply
  • IanHagen - Wednesday, November 04, 2015 - link

    Parallel programming in Swift actually feels easier compared to Java. Reply
  • RealityMonster - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    Some problems don't break down into parallel tasks well, and some are inherently single-threaded. That means 99% of software is going to be written in a way where only one core is handling the heavy lifting, and the other core will be dedicated to background OS tasks and things like the UI.

    This is why you can see the iPhones always fall behind on physics tests--that type of problem set DOES parallelise well, and benefit a lot from a bunch of cores operating together.
    Reply
  • ciderrules - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    I love 3D Touch on my iPhone, but it can still be made so much better.

    How about letting users define/modify the menus that pop up? For example, when I press on the Phone icon I get my recent callers. Why not let me pick what shows up instead? I'd love to always have 2-3 numbers of my choosing show up along with the last 2 recent callers. I don't need the "Create Contact" item so let me remove that one.

    For developers, Apple could let them add a 3D Touch section to their App settings also allowing some customization to what appears when you press.
    Reply
  • blackcrayon - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    You have a good suggestion for first party apps - But 3rd party apps should already be able to do this. Apple calls them "dynamic quick actions" and I don't see why a dev couldn't let the user choose exactly which ones appear. Reply
  • asendra - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    They already do. Check Launcher for example for that exact functionality. Reply
  • CBone - Wednesday, November 04, 2015 - link

    Jailbroken 3d touch will be godly. Right now it flip flops between helpful and nigh worthless depending on the app. Reply
  • Jumangi - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    I'm surprised Apple doesn't just buy Imagination Technologies at this point. Would be the equivalent of petty cash with their money. Reply
  • tipoo - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    They do have a stake in them, and as their biggest customer can pretty much tell them what to do anyways with those things combined. Maybe it's a "why buy the cow when you can get the milk for free" situation. Reply
  • FunBunny2 - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    -- They do have a stake in them, and as their biggest customer can pretty much tell them what to do anyways with those things combined.

    And GT Advanced Tech proved how good that situation is for an Apple supplier!!!!
    Reply
  • nanaki333 - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    The iPhone SoC is just a bunch of ARM extensions built specifically for benchmarks. I bet if you go back, historically, it would perform great in the current-gen benchmarks and newer ones, would do a decent worse than the competition, because at its core, it's as mediocre as it gets.

    Not to mention, I would be MORE shocked if the SoC wasn't better all around for a phone that comes out at the end of the year to NOT beat out phones from many months prior.

    Personally, I'm just getting sick of Apple "Innovating" existing functionality then passing it off as their own (Live Photos? Come on! WP has had that for YEARS).
    Reply
  • nanaki333 - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    Mouse slipped when I tried to click back in another part of the comment box before updating. The benchmark thing reminds me of the 3DFX of old, where if it detected certain .EXE files, it would modify certain aspects of the game (override your current ones) to make it seem to run circles around the competition. People figured it out (May have even been Anand!) and renamed Quake.exe to Quakenew.exe or something and it was poopoo!

    That said though, I WILL give credit where credit is due. If adding more ARM extensions gets them to the top of the charts, why wouldn't you do it? Who cares about raw CPU power when the applications of today run better with a lower power ARM extension. That's the entire point of the ARM SoC! :)

    And I am not a fanboy. I actually recommend iPhone (and now WP) to people that ask about phones all the time. I say they are "Smartphones for dummies" because everything "Just Works" with the fewest glitches overall.
    Reply
  • tipoo - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    SPECint2000 - do you think that's a new "cheated" benchmark, or an older one? I'll give you a hint, the year is in the name. Reply
  • ciderrules - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    You win for not making one, but two of the most ridiculously stupid comments yet for this review. Reply
  • aliasfox - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    You mean like how anandtech (among others) caught Samsung, HTC, Moto, etc cheating on benchmarks a couple of years ago?

    It would be certainly harder to prove cheating on an iPhone, but if it walks like a duck, quacks like a duck, and tastes like a duck, it's probably a duck - in which case, iPhone 6s look fast in benchmarks, perform fast in the real world, and doesn't throttle - seems like they made a pretty good chip here.
    Reply
  • zeeBomb - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    Apple cheating? Well I'd be damned. Reply
  • aliasfox - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    Sorry, just re-read my comment - what I meant to say was that if it behaves like a fast, well designed chip no matter what test or scenario is thrown at it, so why would anybody believe that it's _not_ a fast chip? Reply
  • KoolAidMan1 - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    "The benchmark thing reminds me of the 3DFX of old, where if it detected certain .EXE files, it would modify certain aspects of the game (override your current ones) to make it seem to run circles around the competition."

    This actually happened in smartphones several years ago: http://www.anandtech.com/show/7384/state-of-cheati...

    Samsung, HTC, LG, and Asus were found cheating benchmarks via software. Apple and Motorola are among the few companies that were not cheating.

    Your conspiracy theories have happened before, you're just aiming them at the wrong parties.
    Reply
  • Postulant - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link



    Wait!! So if we look back, we'll see that the first generation iPhone will be on par with the iPhone 6s? Lol...
    Reply
  • tipoo - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    *snort*
    There are always SoC conspiracy theories with Apple if they do well in benchmarks. Going to need you to prove it, or you could say that of everyone else.

    Heck, if you look at ATs benchmark cheating graph, Apple is one of the few honest ones!
    Reply
  • tipoo - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    " because at its core, it's as mediocre as it gets."

    Are we seeing the same CPU charts? 3MB L2, 8MB L8, those things aren't cheap, and spending money on die size allows them to come ahead. The latencies and everything, class leading. I don't see how anyone with a modest interest in these things can look at that and say the core is "mediocre", for a phone it's short of amazing.
    Reply
  • FunBunny2 - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    -- Are we seeing the same CPU charts? 3MB L2, 8MB L8, those things aren't cheap, and spending money on die size allows them to come ahead.

    And this whole, "Wow!!! Apple engineers are so smart!!!" gets a bit old. Adding some cache and other bought-in IP doesn't require an Einstein. Or, even a Woz. It does require some moolah, and a fab that can build the thing. Apple has the former, but not the latter. Buys that in.
    Reply
  • iSeptimus - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    Cautious excitement waiting for your next chip design /s Reply
  • FunBunny2 - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    -- Cautious excitement waiting for your next chip design /s

    I've never claimed to be a chip maker, only that, on the evidence of numerous teardowns, the Ax chips are assemblages of existing tech. Apple hasn't moved the stake in the ground a nanometer. Others could have done the same, but clearly saw that it was all bling, not substance. Fanbois may well disagree, of course. 64 bit with 1 gig of memory?? really?? Oh, there's 2 gig now. Yeah, right.
    Reply
  • RealityMonster - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    That's a function of the development of the OS and software. Android's setup requires a tonne of memory to function properly, so they put more RAM in their phones. More RAM doesn't necessarily equal better performance (with the exception of keeping tabs resident in memory in a browser so you don't have to reload it). Reply
  • jospoortvliet - Wednesday, November 04, 2015 - link

    I guess you buy AMD chips because Intel - all buha, no substance either. Reply
  • blackcrayon - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    Heh, notice how the previous year's iPhone is still competitive with or surpasses this year's competition SoCs, and you'll see how stupid your claims are. Unless by "built specifically for benchmarks" you mean "built specifically to be fast running smartphone apps".
    If what you said had any basis in reality, the real world performance of iOS devices wouldn't hold up to the competition, but they always do.

    But perhaps Anandtech should print an apology for hurting your feelings with their biased pro-Apple tests...
    Reply
  • Tech_guy - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    wow nanaki333, you're about as butt hurt as they come. You must have just bought a Galaxy Note 5 after the sales rep promised you it was the fastest thing on the market. Or you just like to talk out your butt with NO facts to back up what you're saying. The A9 in the 6s is the BEST. Reply
  • cknobman - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    "Hey Siri", "How do you like playing 2nd fiddle to Cortana and copying her features a year after they come out?" Reply
  • V900 - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    Copied Cortana, eh?

    Not sure which features you're talking about, but considering that WP bombed so badly in the market, that MS has more or less given up on if, it certainly can't have been very compelling features!
    Reply
  • cknobman - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    Hey Cortana was the feature Hey Siri is a shameful copy at best.

    MS has not given up on mobile, heck they are completely about a cross platform unified environment.

    MS has sucked at execution so far though. Once they get Windows Phone 10 pushed this month they will have their strategy going full force.
    Reply
  • jospoortvliet - Wednesday, November 04, 2015 - link

    Yes, siri was a pre-emptive copy of Cortana, which was the last of the voice assistance tools for everybody except you. Reply
  • jkdem85 - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    Hmm couldn't one say cortana is at worst a copy of Siri and at best a direct reaction? Heck so is Windows phone in general, as windows mobile was a shit show miniaturization of desktop Windows os prior to iOS and the iPhone necessitating a switch to a mobile friendly os. Same for iPod --> Zune, Your grasping at straws here. Reply
  • RealityMonster - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    Didn't the Moto X have the always-on voice activation first? Reply
  • gijames1225 - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    I'm not sure how this 'pushes the smartphone user experience forward in significant ways', but it does sound like a great phone. Reply
  • milkod2001 - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    I guess the golden plaque was sent by Anand himself :)

    good review though
    Reply
  • jmke - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    Great review as usual. Would be interesting to see the battery tests with lower power mode enabled.
    I've found this setting to be truly stunning on the iPhone 6S, even with the lower CPU/GPU clocks the phone is still impressively fast, with the added bonus to last a lot longer.

    iPhone 5s would be at 20-30% at the of my day (wifi/4g/bluetooth enabled)
    iPhone 6s with lower power mode is at 76% ! without LPM ~50%

    simply awesome :D
    Reply
  • zeeBomb - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    Yeah that would have been nice. I'm really suprised apple came out with an almighty strong CPU, without a mention in the keynote. Reply
  • name99 - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    WTF are you talking about?
    The keynote specifically stated that the A9 was what, 70% faster than the A8 (and that the A9X was 80% faster than the A8X).
    Reply
  • ciderrules - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    I got 6 hours of usage on the weekend (almost all on LTE away from home) and 74 hours standby. That's over 3 full days before I had to charge my phone. This is without LPM enabled.

    My normal work routine I get 2 full days on my 6S Plus (unplug at 5:00AM Monday and down to 10% by Tuesday at 10:00PM). I'll have to try LPM to see how much better it gets and if I notice any slowdowns.
    Reply
  • hans_ober - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    Custom Apple laptop/desktops would really make things interesting. Reply
  • chris w - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    Couple of comments on low light camera performance (I'm a dev working at the very sharp end on this).

    1. The 6s Plus doesn't do 1/4 second exposures (unless something changed from the 6 Plus, and I doubt it). It takes a fast sequence of 1/15 second exposures, and blends multiple images. That blending averages out the high noise levels, giving you a low noise photo at high ISO. What it doesn't give you is any more brightness.

    Compare a 1/4s exposure with an app that allows manual control, and you'll see far better results with more brightness (and more motion blur, proving the 1/15s is correct).

    In low light the main difference between the 6s Plus and 6s is that the Plus' blending removes most of the noise (which is fairly bad at ISO 2000). In my own apps I can push ISO up to 8000 and still produce acceptable images with the same techniques :)

    2. Sensor 'sensitivity' is almost identical to the 6 at the same exposure and ISO settings (similar brightness), but in extreme settings the 6s camera has been limited to 1/3 second exposure against the 6 with 1/2 second (50% better). That makes the 6s / 6s Plus significantly worse if you need this (it's irrelevant with the standard camera app, but with manual control / more advanced apps it's a major limitation).
    Reply
  • zeeBomb - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    So uh, what you're saying is...should I use a different camera app then the regular stock app? Reply
  • chris w - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    Depends on what you want. Regular day to day photos without fuss: stock camera app. Capabilities beyond what Apple offer (manual controls, longer exposure times and so on): there are far more powerful apps.

    Low light is a particular area where the stock app does pretty badly. Point it at the night sky, you're lucky if you can see a single star, but the camera is capable of far, far more (it's certainly capable of shooting by moonlight, the tests in this review are brightly lit streets!)
    Reply
  • zeeBomb - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    Hm. Interesting. What Camera app do you prefer the most in these situations? Reply
  • chris w - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    In very low light, it'd have to be my own as this is my speciality and I've pushed the iPhone camera a lot further than anyone else. (It's NightCap Pro if you're interested - there's a gallery of customer photos on the website, and the Astronomy gallery in particular shows just what the iPhone is *really* capable of).

    Outside of low light, still my own, because it's capable enough and it's my own ;) But there are many other capable apps, i'm just not the right person to ask.
    Reply
  • PhytochromeFr - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    It seems wrong info. 6 SIMD * 48 MAD = 288. Reply
  • DDRundo - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    Great review. I currently use a Galaxy S6, but I really want to try an iPhone in the future. I'd get the iPhone 7/7s Plus when it comes out. Gotta get some good usage from my S6 first. Reply
  • zeeBomb - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    Same here! We can voyage to the same boat with quality reviews like these! Reply
  • V900 - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    I switched from flagship Android phones a year and a half ago, and never looked back.

    It's a cliche to say that "it just works", but it's true. And it usually works better, faster and in a more elegant way.

    The only disadvantages is the small hardware selection compared to Android, (though that also leads to phones that get updates for 3-5 years.) and the fact that unless you jailbreak it, there isn't a lot of opportunities for customization.

    After years of burning ROMs on Nxus, HTC and Samsungs, I har enough of that to last me awhile though.
    Reply
  • jkdem85 - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    Why not just sell on Craigslist or Ebay and try it now? The 6s / 6s plus are really good phones Reply
  • Endgame124 - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    Still no reports on cellular data and call quality.

    If I take an iPhone 6s and a Galaxy Note 5 on the same network to an area with questionable cell reception, which will drop more calls? Which will download data faster?
    Reply
  • Klug4Pres - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    Yes, I miss that brief period when Brian had the loan of a test base station for this type of work. Reply
  • atl - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    Again under powered charger, specially on iphone 6s plus. Reply
  • zeeBomb - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    Meh...Apple's way to get others to spend money on peripherals. Reply
  • MykeM - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    Steal or borrow your spouse/sister/parents' iPad 2 charger (pretty much everyone I know has somebody who owns an iPad) and tell them to charge their iPad using the USB port on the MacBook/laptop/desktop. Reply
  • jkdem85 - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    Just use the iPad charger out of a regular outlet, and it charges very quick Reply
  • Jaaap - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    If you have an iMac or MacBook, charge the phone from one of its USB ports.
    Most 2008+ macs have 2.1A capable usb ports.

    You can look it up in About this Mac => System Report... => USB
    Select the phone and look for this:
    Current Available (mA): 1000
    Current Required (mA): 500
    Extra Operating Current (mA): 1600
    Sleep current (mA): 2100
    Reply
  • dmacfour - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    Some of you are insufferable.

    Apple is dominating the smartphone game and Anandtech thoroughly demonstrated why. For some unknown reason, this conclusions seems impossible to you - Apple must be paying them off! They must be cheating the benchmarks!

    Is Apple paying off every other reviewer? Is everyone involved in this conspiracy soulless?
    Reply
  • KoolAidMan1 - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    Fandroids gonna Fandroid.

    Apple has the best hardware, best ecosystem, and an excellent OS that they continue to support. Its weird how people who don't even own an iOS device are so mad about this.

    That's a lot of salt for someone to say that Anandtech is getting paid off for their coverage.
    Reply
  • dmacfour - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    I previously owned an iPhone 6 and currently have a Samsung S6. I've seen both sides of the fence, and will be switching back to an iPhone as soon as possible. My Galaxy is not stable, has an unimpressive battery life, and is not responsive. Launch screen icons regularly refresh, and I occasionally have to delete text conversations that get too long. The messaging menu slows to a crawl if I don't.

    I don't know if these Fandroids are looking past these inconsistencies, but they're completely unacceptable after using an iOS device.
    Reply
  • Gigaplex - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    I'm a developer, and my main objection with iOS is the strict and arbitrary rules about publishing apps to the store. I can understand why they have some of the rules (eg security) but I'm not going to voluntarily participate in an ecosystem where your product can be pulled from the store at any time on a whim. Reply
  • ciderrules - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    Good thing the rest of the iOS developers don't think like you do, and because if it two things have happened:

    - iOS has, by far, the best selection of Apps and the highest quality Apps across a wide range from gaming to professional (especially tablet Apps).
    - iOS developers have enjoyed $30 billion in revenues from the App Store (as of June 2015).

    Seems like iOS developers have been doing just fine.
    Reply
  • KoolAidMan1 - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    And despite all that iOS is by far the most profitable ecosystem for developers with the best selection and highest quality of apps on any mobile platform.

    The top reason for rejection is developers storing personal user data on their servers. If you're playing by the rules then you shouldn't have much to worry about.
    Reply
  • amdwilliam1985 - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    Hey man, I'm also an iOS app developer, my advise, treat Apple like China. Never say no to them, follow the rules to the letters, you are in a "dictator's land", you need to play by their "rules". Stand up straight and say "Yes Sir" to Apple ALL THE TIME and you'll be fine. You don't want to be pull(or shot by the Chinese government for whatever lame excuse they came up with to justify shooting you). I always publicity say Hail iOS, Hail Apple whenever I can. Pretty much the same thing I do when I enter China(I live in HK, right next to China).
    Some might ask why do I develop iOS apps if I dislike Apple's practices so much, well, I got a family to feed, in a perfect world I'll get to choose to work at wherever I wish, but in this reality, Apple(iOS) makes me money, feeds my family, and I will bow down(at least in public) and yell "Hail iOS, Hail Apple", trust me, you'll get use it as you get older. lol.
    Reply
  • zeeBomb - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    The dictatorship is strong in this comment! Reply
  • jospoortvliet - Wednesday, November 04, 2015 - link

    Well, he is right. Apple delayed an important security patches (with no other changes) for our users for three months with all kinds of silly nonsense (like remove link to your website - you sell stuff there - no, we don't, but arguing is pointless). Also, we have to work around the limitations in their API by listening GPS changes to detect if a picture was taken so we can upload it - stupid but Apple does not want anybody to compete with their iCrapCloud.

    And yes, despite all that shit, we sell more for iOS than Android so we muddle through.
    Reply
  • IanHagen - Wednesday, November 04, 2015 - link

    Because you certainly never had to do some black magic to get an android app running, haven't you? It took them half a decade to get fragments right! Reply
  • lucam - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    Very good review!

    Something I never understood is why only Apple uses the high spec PowerVr GPU. Android world uses middle - low range Series 6...good question for Alex and Anand! :)
    Reply
  • zeeBomb - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    thats a good question! Reply
  • jospoortvliet - Wednesday, November 04, 2015 - link

    Because Android phones don't earn enough to afford the die space for it, I bet. Android top end phones still plunk prices down by 25% within a quarter. Good for me (that is when I buy them) but it does mean they can't put in high the real high end stuff. Reply
  • name99 - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    "As for the OoO reorder depth, contemporary experience is that deeper OoO reorder windows eat more power"

    This isn't exactly correct. There are two aspects to the OoO reorder window.
    The 192 number refers to the ROB which contains instructions are held as speculative --- they haven't yet been confirmed as absolutely correct.

    The ROB is handled as a queue and is a fairly low power structure. The real limitation here is that a large ROB requires more rename registers and larger load-store queues. (You can increase the ROB as much as you like, and you won't burn much power, but if you don't proportionally increase the number of renames and the size of the load-store queues the larger ROB won't buy you anything.)

    There are ways to handle both these issues. A two-level register store is possible (POWER-8 uses it) but not ideal. There are papers talking about ways to aggressively recycle registers rather than always locking them to ROB entries, and those schemes are probably a better fit for Apple's long term direction. Likewise there are schemes (the buzz-word here is Store Queue Index Prediction) for providing larger load-store queues without the address-collision-checking blowing up in cost.

    So far Apple has been basically (very aggressively) implementing ideas that Intel (and IBM, and sometimes Sun/Oracle) have already implemented; but now that they exceed Intel's IPC, the era of safe implementation is over. They will have to run the simulations and take the risks to decide which of these various ideas (like register recycling vs two-level register store, or SQIP) are worth implementing, and that's got to be scarier than just implementing what you already know works well.

    What DOES use more power is a larger instruction window (this is the pool of instructions that could be executed but are waiting for one or more operands before they are allowed to proceed). This structure is probably 64 instructions in length (I don't know if we've ever been told the exact size, but 64 would be about what I'd expect), and this structures DOES use a lot more power as it grows.

    Once again there are published papers for how to improve the situation. The usual idea is that rather than extracting the "best" instructions every cycle for dispatch to execution units, one settles for extracting a good but sub-optimal set. If you are willing to allow this, you can create linked lists of dependent instructions and just scan the heads of those lists as dependent operands are resolved, rather than scanning the entire pool of waiting instructions. This has an IPC cost, but uses less power and allows for higher frequency operation, so for Apple it may be a good tradeoff, especially given how wide they are. Once again --- scary to have to be the first to implement a promising (but untested) idea...
    Reply
  • FunBunny2 - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    -- Once again --- scary to have to be the first to implement a promising (but untested) idea...

    Given Apple's history of opportunism, I don't expect they will.
    Reply
  • name99 - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    Oh grow up.
    Even apart from the historical record --- exactly who else out there has 3DTouch? --- what do you expect them to do now that they have reached Intel parity? Just stop improving the SoCs?
    Reply
  • FunBunny2 - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    -- exactly who else out there has 3DTouch?

    A) hardly earth shattering (and what evidence is there that the hardware is Apple's?)
    B) name one successful Apple (or Jobs, Next was an abject failure) product that was actually first-to-market

    Apple/Jobs views current products, makes a branded version with added bling, and claims victory. Lisa? Newton?? Next?? and so on. iPad is the closest to leading, but even there, tablets had been in wide use, just not as a consumer device.
    Reply
  • akdj - Friday, November 06, 2015 - link

    Add an ny before the 'B' on your handle. It would be more appropriate.

    ...as you're absolutely, truly delusional. What's more, it's about two or three twits like you that have COMPLETELY destroyed any semblance of a comment section here on Anand. You've nothing to add, you're clueless about 'anything tech related', including phones, tablets, and computing period! Encompassing every piece of a computer you're just 'not getting it'. You've failed. And you should TRULY find a new hobby (job, maybe?)
    Someone so disinterested, pissed off, and clueless about chip fab, making a smartphone, tablet or 3D Touch for crying out loud ...hanging out in nearly 500 comments on something you despise REEKS of ..."Damn, I need a LIFE!" (& education, but many thanks for your meaningless drivel and confused falsifies you've added to the comment section).

    JagOff ...nah, that's the handle you ought to use
    Reply
  • name99 - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    "Without more architectural information I don’t want to read into this too much – shorter penalties could imply a shorter pipeline – however at a minimum this means that Apple’s performance just got a lot better whenever they do miss a branch."

    Not necessarily.
    On modern OoO machines, when you take a misspeculation (branch or otherwise) you have to reconstruct the correct state of the machine before the bad speculation. This is a whole lot of work, more than "just" flushing the pipeline, resetting the PC, and reloading instructions. You also, for example, have to reconstruct the correct register rename mapping.

    To speed this up, it's usual to provide checkpoints as instruction proceeds (generally at branches that are expected to be poorly predicted). It's possible that Apple is providing more checkpoints than before, or that their heuristics for which branches will be poorly predicted have substantially improved (so they get much more value out of the same number of checkpoints) or that the checkpoints hold more data so that unwinding state after a misspeculation has fewer steps, or the steps can be done more in parallel.

    Point is, all of these can speed up the recovery after a mispredicted branch even without the pipeline length changing.

    The literature also has discussion of how it's possible in principle, to only flush part of the ROB on a misprediction, basically everything between the incorrect branch and the next convergence point. Once again this sort of thing would lead to an apparent lower cost for branch prediction.
    Once again new territory, and my guess is Apple has NOT implemented this in Twister, though maybe in a future core...
    Reply
  • name99 - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    "However it’s also worth mentioning that as Apple is using an inclusive style cache here "

    How do you know the cache system is inclusive?
    My guess is that the L2 is inclusive (and serves as the coherency point between the CPU cores), but the L3 is as much as anything there to transfer data rapidly, and act as the coherency point, between the GPU and the CPUs. It might make sense to have it operate on a directory model rather than an inclusion model. So it would have two associated directories storing the ADDRESSES (but not the data) of lines in the CPU L2 and also lines in the cache system of the GPU.
    I think a directory is more sensible simply because the cache sizes are SO similar that anything else would be a horrible waste of potential storage.
    Reply
  • Ryan Smith - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    Humm, that is an interesting point. I have my doubts that they've done quite that, but this deserves further consideration. Thank you. Reply
  • name99 - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    "Due to the data dependencies present within the physics test, it is necessary for the CPU to stall for data to be committed to memory before continuing on to the next portion of the test instead of executing instructions in parallel"

    This is not an especially helpful explanation.
    The basic problem here is that the 3DMark Physics score is basically frequency*(num cores).
    The operation involved is trivially parallelizable; and within each thread the code is aggressively "sequential" in that each operation depends on the previous operation.

    The reason Apple always looks bad on this is because they have low core counts and low frequencies compared to the A57 based CPUs.

    To make things worse (which tells you something about the quality of this benchmark) the core count for iOS devices was apparently hard-coded at 2 (uhh, A8X guys...) and this has only JUST been fixed --- we'll see if AnandTech uses this revised version when they benchmark the iPad Pro.

    So yeah, if you have code that matches the very peculiar behavior of the 3DMark 1.2 code (trivially parallelizable, but each thread has practically no instruction level parallelism) it's a great predictor of how a SoC will do. For normal code however...
    Reply
  • lucam - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    Hey, why don't you send a resume to Anand and start writing reviews too? Reply
  • name99 - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    I understand that 90% of you are here for the bitchfest and to show your tribal tattoos. Whatever.

    But there ARE 10% or so that are actually interested in CPU technology, and I like to give back to the community that I learned a lot from when I was a lot younger.
    Reply
  • lucam - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    That's what I meant! I am really enjoying your reviews can't wait for the next one!! Reply
  • akdj - Friday, November 06, 2015 - link

    I appreciate you and a few others 'comments'. It would certainly be nice to somehow separate the chaff...
    Short of censorship, nothing you can. It pisses me off though when the jabs get personal, and I've enjoyed to full reads of the review only to have to wade through 255 of these 'bitchfest, tribal tat showing (sic)' comments that mean nothing.

    Thanks. It's cool there's still a few here willing to continue posting with the loons. I'm sure when it comes to reading, sharing and enjoying the article (significantly more than a review, just my opinion) - it's as flipped as your estimate here in comments. Pretty easy to figure out who read it, who didn't, & I'd venture to say the latter - 90% of the folks that continue to frequent the site. Take in the reviews.
    ...then run like hell before you even have to see below the 'award section' and wrap of final words and seeing comment #1 of 410
    And I quote
    (Maybe ill get it off a bit, I'll try;)) "it's about friggin' time!'

    Wow. What happened over the last half decade?

    Off soap box. Thanks for your additional info
    Reply
  • leo_sk - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    It cant be argued that the home button is one of the defining characters of iphone, but cant they have front facing speakers on its 2 sides (something like htc m9+) Reply
  • MykeM - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    The iPad Pro has not two but four speakers on each of the four corners. I think that would be harder to accomplish with the iPhone due to the size and how crammed the inside already is.

    And Apple probably view the iPad and the iPhone from a completely different user perspective with the iPhone being a more personal device where the best/loudest sound should only come through the headphone. With the iPhone being so ubiquitous (as a single model device- more so than any one particular Android device in history), having loud sound blasting out of a device most people carry with them all the time, would probably bring more bad than good PR to the company.
    Reply
  • prophet001 - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    Really guy?

    -_-
    Reply
  • ReverseBlade - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    Sorry, only full HD screen, no sd card support, no wireless charging thus pretty outdated hardware. Next please? Reply
  • jkdem85 - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    When will you guys get over sd cards? They are DEAD! Im a quintessential pro user and have a 128gb 6s+. It's as big as many ultra book laptop sd/hd and does a great job. If I need more room there's a bevy of option on the cloud or even physical external hard drives. Why are you guys obsessed with slow and failure prone storage mediums in 2015? Reply
  • osxandwindows - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    Right now wireless charging is a joke.
    wake me up when I can walk around with my phone in my pocket charging.
    No sd card? o please its not the only one, go ask samsung.
    Reply
  • osxandwindows - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    I don't attack nexus because they never had sd cards sense like 2008.
    My point remains about wireless charging.
    Reply
  • blackcrayon - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    You have to dig really deep, don't you? Yes, I'm sure I'd rather have a phone that slows down to half speed in the middle of playing a game, but at least i can charge it without the incredible hassle of plugging in a cable! Sounds like an easy tradeoff! (And let me guess, you won't level these criticisms at the new Nexus phones because this isn't actually about features but your feelings). Reply
  • beggerking@yahoo.com - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    no multithreaded benchmarks? biased.

    oh no micro sd, no removable battery, waterproofing, wireless charging = no go
    Reply
  • beggerking@yahoo.com - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    nand sequential read speed = useless since almost nothing is read sequentially. Reply
  • Postulant - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    lol, settle down. Anandtech is just revealing their findings. They aren't trying to make you purchase an iPhone. Try to enjoy the review even if it hurts. Reply
  • osxandwindows - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    Nexus phones have been with out any of those things for years.
    Please justify this.
    Pretty sure google will drop sd cards in the next version of android with 256gb smartphones.
    Reply
  • darkich - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    Android 6 will actually introduce full SD support. That means installing and running any app on and from an SD. So yeah.. Reply
  • osxandwindows - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    I know that.
    But still in 2016 wood we still be using sd cards?
    I mean they are slow as hell.
    Reply
  • osxandwindows - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    O please the multithreaded benchmarks are good about 4400 not that impressive compared to a galaxy s6. Reply
  • blackcrayon - Wednesday, November 04, 2015 - link

    If you're reaching that score with a bunch of slow cores, like the Exynos is, it isn't nearly as meaningful for a smartphone. Reply
  • MattL - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    Why does your screen comparison charts for Contrast Ration not include the Samsung Galaxy phones especially your newly reviewed Note 5 and S6 Edge... which both handily beat the contrast ratio of the iPhone's screen... These phones are chief competitors why would you not actually compare them. Reply
  • Brandon Chester - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    Because it's effectively infinite and the black levels are zero. It goes without saying that AMOLED devices win in that category, and it just looks like an error when they get listed in the graph with a zero result. Reply
  • MattL - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    Yes I know this, but you do see the irony that those phones are left off the comparison charts, the charts specifically meant to show you where the phones stack up against eachother, because it's so much better. It defeats the purpose of having a summary chart to not even list he top performers in that chart, especially considering how important contrast is to image quality. Reply
  • amdwilliam1985 - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    That's why sometimes it feels like these charts and data were selectively cherry picked to make iPhone look better than they were actually were. In this case, Anandtech wasn't lying about data that were shown, it's just that they didn't tell the whole truth.
    Just read the review with a grain of salt. I only compare iPhones to iPhones reviews, Galaxy/LG/HTC phones to Galaxy/LG/HTC phones, Nexus phones to Nexus phone. Comparing across "categories" may or may not lead to the best results.
    Reply
  • blackcrayon - Wednesday, November 04, 2015 - link

    Web browser benchmarks aren't the end-all, but they are indicative of how phones perform in a very common operation. Android is way behind in javascript performance (for some reason, maybe someone can explain?) to the point that some sites have to serve a lighter version of a page to Android vs. iOS users. But what problem do you have with the graphics benchmarks? Why wouldn't those be applicable to 3D games and general GPU performance cross platform? Reply
  • MykeM - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    That's because OLED panels have infinite contrast and black level. Hence you can't really measure them. Reply
  • Rapha.194 - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    ALELUIA ! Reply
  • mgaustin - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    What compiler/flags are used with the specint results? Reply
  • Rylen - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    Quote from: jehurey on Today at 01:16:22 PM
    I'm sure my Android phone would run much faster with the specs I had if I had an incredibly limited OS like an iPhone.

    Thanks for the info. :)

    "On the SoC side, it’s pretty safe to say that the A9 SoC is the best SoC in any phone today"

    "At the end of the all that really matters is that the phone delivers the best user experience in areas where GPU or CPU performance is a gating factor"

    "Gaming on the iPhone is going to be the best possible experience due to its incredibly high unthrottled GPU performance and the length of time that it’s able to sustain that unthrottled GPU performance. No other SoC I've tested this year can sustain this level of performance for this level of time."

    "The iPhone’s storage solution here is ahead of everything else in the industry for three clear reasons"

    "Burst photography and camera speed are also improved as a result of better storage."

    "Overall, all of these things come together to make noticeable differences in user experience. "

    "The addition of 1080p120 slow motion video only magnifies just how far ahead Apple is in this segment when compared to Android smartphones."

    "A9 SoC is a huge jump in performance even relative to other SoCs on the same process node to give impressive application performance. The storage solution is unlike anything else in mobile that I’ve seen so far. The camera’s overall user experience is just about the best that you can get on the market. 3D Touch is a big improvement in user experience"

    "The iPhone 6s’ are the best phones you can buy today."

    "This year, more than ever it feels like Android smartphones at the high end have stood still"
    Reply
  • StrangerGuy - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    That has nothing to with iOS but everything with major OEMs and carriers bloating the shit out of Android phones. See how Android runs blazingly fast on a $200 Moto G or $130 Xiaomi despite lousy raw specs. Reply
  • KoolAidMan1 - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    You can't expect an operating system that mostly runs interpreted code to be as fast as one that runs everything natively. Android has been fundamentally inefficient since release. It is still trying to catch up in efficiency to where iOS was years ago with things like the Dalvik to ART transition. Reply
  • zeeBomb - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    You forgot your flameshield... Reply
  • futrtrubl - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    On the GPU page should the total MADs for the 6s be 288? Both MADs/SIMD and # SIMDs increased but total MADs didn't according to the table as it is. Reply
  • farhadd - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    I find that always-on "Hey Siri" definitely falls asleep at times. It simply will not respond, even if I'm speaking to it at the same distance. If I wake the phone and lock it again it seems to be more responsive for some time afterward. Reply
  • aliasfox - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    I've noticed the same thing. She sometimes wakes up when I turn Hey Siri off/on again, and sometimes she makes me set her up again with the voice imprinting. Less reliable than I would like, and if Apple themselves have proven anything, it's that consistency often trumps absolute usefulness - in other words, they should probably find the bug that makes Siri nap and fix it. Reply
  • TelstarTOS - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    On the table "Mobile SoC GPU Comparison" gt7600 has 6 SIMDs with 48 MADs each but the total says 128. Is it 288 or they have less MADs? Reply
  • Ryan Smith - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    That was an error. It's 6 SIMDs with 32 MADs per. For a total of 192.

    Thanks for pointing that out.
    Reply
  • zeeBomb - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    I also believe there are some problems of the images of the low light photos of the Google Nexus 5 HDR+. It just isn't showing! Reply
  • Ryan Smith - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    Correct you are. Those should now properly load. Reply
  • Oh Whatever - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    How do you guys measure camera focus latency and camera shot latency? By an eyeshot? Reply
  • MrSpadge - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    Wow, put that SOC into a Lumia 1050 and I may actually spend omney on a smartphone! Reply
  • Martynet - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    The only competition of the iPhone is the next iPhone. King is the only one. Since 2007. Reply
  • zeeBomb - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    Going for 300! Reply
  • MarcSP - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    I know this question is not about the iPhone review but, could anyone explain to me how is it possible that the Lumia 930 has the WORST battery time for browsing (6.75 hours), and the BEST battery time in the BaseMark OS battery test (5.78 hours)? Reply
  • Ryan Smith - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    The short answer is that it has low SoC performance, which keeps from draining the battery quickly under BaseMark OS (this is reflected in the adjoining BaseMark OS battery score). But it also has high display power drain, which hurts web browsing (so many white backgrounds). So the limiting factor in both cases tends to be the high power draw of the AMOLED display. Reply
  • SoberGoober - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    I stopped reading this as soon as he said the phones released this year were boring... Reply
  • Strider123 - Thursday, November 05, 2015 - link

    SoberGoober

    As soon as I saw your comment, I did the impossible and dragged my lazy ass and created an account so I can say that I feel the same. For Anandtech to say that Android phones released this year were boring was very puzzling, I would probably consider Android phones released this year or since iPhone 6 release last September some of the most exciting ones I have seen in while. The bar is now raised so high so there is no room in this industry for any second-rate efforts by Android phone makers.

    But it is a decent review, and at the end of the day I think the reviewers should be objective "most" of the time, but I think we need to cut them some slack and say that any review should allow 10-20% of subjective experiences by the reviewer, it is at the end of the day, their review and their personal experience with the phone as well.
    Reply
  • zeeBomb - Sunday, November 08, 2015 - link

    Wow! Reply
  • Sushisamurai - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    What's the average file size of a live photo? That would definitely help determine what size iphone a user would buy. Reply
  • zeeBomb - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    Typically double the size of your still image. Safe to say is to go with the 64GB SKU. Reply
  • Sushisamurai - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    @zeeBomb that sounds like a guess :S The thing is, it's a "collection" of still images, so technically, if it's 12-15 FPS, then wouldn't it be 18-23 times the size of a still image (1.5 seconds)? Reply
  • zeeBomb - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    Well, all I know is that it'll generally be bigger than your standard photo, as live photos is basically Apple's take on gif images. You can always disable live photos anytime as well. Reply
  • asendra - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    It's not a guess. Live photos are two times the size of a photo.
    Not a gif, it's a video format.
    Reply
  • poohbear - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    weren't these things released months ago? Reply
  • zeeBomb - Monday, November 02, 2015 - link

    I knew someone would ask this, lol. The review just came a little later than per usual, that's all. Reply
  • zeeBomb - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    Hold up you guys. I kind of have an inquiring question regarding the performance of the iPhone 6+ to the 6S plus.

    Last year, when the phone had been reviewed, it had been stated that when you were taking videos that it felt no different of it on, as it seemed like the OIS wasn't activating but was using EIS instead...

    Does that mean it wouldn't be a good idea to get the 6+ for video? As OIS only for images is like a win-lose situation to me.
    Reply
  • iSeptimus - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    OIS is enabled on video now also. Reply
  • zeeBomb - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    For the 6+? Well that's some good news I wanted to hear! Reply
  • raj parihar - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    What about microarchitecture? Is it next next gen Cyclone or something different? Reply
  • halcyon - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    It's not best in many areas (camera, storage, form factors, screen res, etc), but it is clearly the best in raw and applicable performance.

    In fact, it is so much better than Galaxy Note 5 (the latest flagship from Samsung) that it's not even funny.

    Feels like a generation faster (near 50% on many benchmarks, esp. browsing).

    That's a LOT.

    Samsung needs to get it's act together in their proprietary core design and/or system optimization, if they want to keep up.

    I'm on Android myself, because I don't like stuff force fed down my throat (like can I really have another browser, other than Safari/WebKit?), but I have to hand it to Apple - they've pulled a good one on this.

    Then again, I can get near 75% of the performance with half the price by buying a Chinese flagship and I have all the tweaking, customization and personalization options that I need for my workflow.

    If Apple would open up the iOS and their ecosystem just even a little bit more, I'd jump ship in an instant.

    Then again, that'd be like waiting for hell to freeze over...
    Reply
  • id4andrei - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    Samsung should have acquired Intrinsity when they had the chance. They worked with them on the exceptional S2. Apple snapped them up from under their nose. Together with PA Semi they sucked up all the talent in the custom SoC space.

    Only recently Sammy has woken up with their Exynos but it is still not fully custom. Ironic, they(Samsung) hold an architecture license for some time now but they haven't used it for core design(only for interconnects).

    Samsung also bloats their Android to their detriment. Personally I'd wish them to migrate to Tizen, but alas, they can't shake Android.
    Reply
  • beggerking@yahoo.com - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    They picked and choose benchmarks. No multithread benchmarks breakfast apple gets a beat down there Reply
  • RealityMonster - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    Do you know how few apps can take advantage of multiple cores? I work in the games industry on AAA console games, and we work super hard to parallelise our code, but it's not trivial. 99% of what you do on a phone is going to be single threaded, and any app that IS multi-core ready might not live up to the potential of all those cores simply by having a mangled multi-threaded implementation.

    The physics test is a good multi-core test, and you can see that the A9 gets stomped there. But extra cores very rarely buy you anything other than cost and space.
    Reply
  • KoolAidMan1 - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    The iOS ecosystem is second to none right now, both in terms of software and hardware.

    Tweaking the OS is another matter, but that's the tradeoff for better software and hardware.
    Reply
  • akdj - Friday, November 06, 2015 - link

    When was the last time you used an iOS device? Last time hell froze over?

    Plenty of browsers been available on the App Store since its 2008 inception. It's tough to find a flagship Sammy, LG, or HTC in these objective tests that returns 75% of the performance.

    And I guarantee any amount of 'tweaking, customization and personalization options you need for your workflow' you attempt on said knock off Chinese device...won't come ANYwhere near what you're capable of doing with today's iPhone, iPad iOS and the App Store. Can't do it on a flagship, now in the WORLD are you gonna find a 'knock off?'
    Reply
  • MattL - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    Great review as usual on CPU, GPU, and Storage. I am glad to see Apple leapfrog a bit more than the usual amount, hopefully motivates Qualcomm to step it up. I have to agree in that department Android phones have been somewhat stagnant this year (ironically Apple users often argue specs are insignificant of course lol).

    I have two issues with this review however:

    1) 3D Touch

    I think the idea is interesting, pressure sensitive touch... something they've experimented in their touchpads a bit. Probably the most genuinely innovative Apple has done in a long time. I'm skeptical of the praise being heaped on it's implementation however... most of the best uses I've seen could have easily been done (and probably should have) via long-presses (which don't have to be that long really) long ago. There seems to be a few genuinely useful implementations of it and will be interesting to see what others do if they decide to embrace it. I'm still skeptical at how useful it genuinely is compared to other interface mechanisms (like long-press), but I'm curious to see if it becomes more than just a novelty.

    2) Display

    As I previously mentioned I find it extremely puzzling to not include the Samsung phones, the chief competition, on the contrast ratio and black level summary charts. The entire purpose of such charts are to quickly summarize how phones and it seems extremely odd leaving out the best performers because of how well they perform. Contrast ratio is often considered the most important visual factor in image quality so again it's odd.

    I also find this statement to be a bit biased:
    "Samsung does provide better contrast and the possibility of extra color saturation with their Galaxy S6 and Note 5, but this comes at the cost of potential for burn-in, increased power consumption in certain scenarios, and increased distortion with changes in viewing angles. I think this means that it basically comes out to a wash, but depending upon personal taste one may prove to be better than another."

    First I tried searching your Note 5 review for an mention of burn-in (something I don't recall seeing in other reviews) and increased power consumption in "certain scenarios". Correct me if I'm wrong.

    Did you do any genuine testing for either of these scenarios, or maybe link to any sources that have done legitimate testing regarding that? If not then I find it extremely disingenuous to throw out those critiques (that seemingly you don't even mention in it's reviews).

    The viewing angle thing I find a bit odd, I saw brief mention of it in the Note 5 review but didn't see any genuinely technical or thorough analysis of what that means. I that specific sentence you use the intriguingly vague viewing angle issue of the Note 5 in comparison but not the iPhones multiple viewing angle issues (such as reduced contrast and brightness, like all LCD screens), issues you mention earlier but in the comments comparing it to the Note 5 you peg the Note 5 but not it. Ironically the iPhone has viewing angle issues and the other two issues you mentioned for the Note 5 seem somewhat invented (or speculative), while you don't emphasize the contrast advantage of the Note 5 (which is significant in a very quantitative way) or the viewing angle benefits of the Note 5.

    Honestly your Display comparison seems extremely biased and quite disappointing. I credit Apple for pushing their CPU, GPU, and storage technologies (even a bit more than I'd expect considering their 6 month advantage on some comparable Android phones), but you seem to heavily bias and downplay the genuine and measurable Samsung screen advances and advantages.
    Reply
  • R. Hunt - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    The moment Apple starts using OLED across their product lines, reviewers will start declaring all other types of displays obsolete. It seems like Apple can't lose in any category that's as relevant as the display. Reply
  • ciderrules - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    You think long press is OK? Imagine if right clicking in Windows you had to hold the right mouse button down for a second before the context menu popped up. You think people would accept that? 3D Touch is literally right click. It's faster than that stupid long press and leaves long press for other less used options.

    Note 5 is inferior to the iPhone 6S Plus. In almost every way, except the screen. And the screen is not nearly as big an advantage as you try to make it out to be. Sound like someone is upset at their choice of purchase.
    Reply
  • MattL - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    @ciderrules

    Your tone reveals your bias.

    Long press is fine, you can have a long press that's as low as 500 ms or so, maybe even less... Pressure sensitive touch (I refuse to call it 3D touch lol) might be a slight bit faster, maybe more efficient, we'll see... but the truth is that a lot of the functionality that was added could have easily been done with a long press, right now people are seeing the contrast of going from no long-press like context specific functionality straight into pressure sensitive context menus, so it seems extremely improved because they skipped an entire step they could have done long ago.

    You assume too much about me lol, I don't own a Note 5, I own a Note 4. I didn't see a reason to pay to upgrade to the Note 5, it's an incremental upgrade, worth getting for new users but not enough to rush to upgrade. I have owned an iPhone in the past, so I'm plenty familiar with Android and iOS... I love my Note 4 and don't see any reason to upgrade to either Note 5 or iPhone 6s Plus.

    The iPhone 6s Plus is not superior in every way except the screen lol. The screen is very likely to be superior on the Note 5 (since Samsung has put out far superior screens for multiple generations now) though I'll hold off on the Display Mate review which does a *far* deeper analysis than Anandtech on screen. Areas where Anandtech makes offhand commments about viewing angle quality etc Displaymate will release hard numbers, such as how much brightness decreases at an angle, contrast loss, etc.

    Don't downplay the advantage of screen quality in the Samsung phones over the iPhones though, they offer a *Far* superior contrast which often is considered the most important image quality aspect. They usually offer somewhat superior color accuracy though they both are getting so close to perfect they both are usually beyond (or close to beyond) what the human I can see. Keep in mind that the Samsung phones offer a mode that is calibrated and supports the Adobe color gamut, something that is very impressive on a mobile device (and for professionals is actually very useful). Also viewing angles are often far superior on the latest Samsung screens, especially in brightness and contrast (where you see a significant benefit).

    All these things add up quite a bit and considering the screen is your primary interface input for your phone it shouldn't be underplayed... Honestly far more important than CPU and GPU speeds in my opinion (why I mostly stopped caring about CPU and GPU specs a couple years ago, though from a technical perspective it's interesting).

    These are all things you should educate yourself on before you make assumption based comments about another persons intentions.

    I am impressed with Apples progress on the CPU and GPU side... Storage (to a lesser extent since let's be honest PCIe storage was inevitable to come to phones, just like NFC payments came to Android phones first Apple hit this mark a bit early, credit given in context) is also a good improvement. Apple users have long argued they don't care about specs like that though ironically and honestly I've agreed with them for at least 2 years now (when I felt phones reached a certain level of power where they get diminished returns beyond that, unless some drastic new feature is discovered that needs serious more power, say maybe MS continuum where it needs to run as a desktop).

    I'm just a proponent of a fair review, the distinct advantages of the Note 5 and Edge phones are heavily underplayed in this comparison while the advantages to the latest iPhone is heavily emphasized... Not only that Anandtech mentions two out of three negatives to the Samsung display aren't even mentioned in their Samsung review (and something I don't find mention of in other in-depth display reviews) so either they didn't feel the need to point it out when they actually reviewed the product or they felt the need to speculate or invent new negatives to make it look more balanced.

    Comparisons are pointless unless they are fair.
    Reply
  • MattL - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    Also to add, one area where the latest Samsung phones excel (and other Android phones actually) is camera quality. Refer to the dxomark analysis where the iPhone's latest camera is literally a wash compared to it's last gen tech... while Android cameras (that were already better than last gen iPhone) have taken a further step up.

    Ironically it's a reverse of what you see with the SoC, where Apple took a big step forward while Android SoC languished a bit (though again to be fair it's 6 months older, but still it wasn't a bit step forward) while the iPhone camera performance literally was overall equal to last gen (a baby step forward in some areas and backward in others) while Android continues to use camera tech that progresses nicely forward.
    Reply
  • osxandwindows - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    Personally I like the iPhone camera better.
    I have a note 5 and iPhone.
    Some people think DXO marc were paid.
    Many people like the iPhone camera better tho.
    The note 5 has a grate camera.
    Heck people didn't like the sony z5 at all.
    So on the camera side its completely your opinion.
    Or should I say personal for a preference.
    Reply
  • MattL - Friday, November 06, 2015 - link

    But see it isn't your opinion lol. That's like saying the SoC is your opinion, which completely invalidates all the great work Anandtech did on reviewing every detail of that SoC.

    Now how the software uses that SoC (being the OS) comes somewhat down to opinion, do you like iOS vs Android etc.

    Cameras are the same way, you can analyze the raw performance of a variety of aspects, especially the sensor. Now how you like the Camera app software, that can come down to preference or if there are trade-offs you might prefer trading one thing for another etc.

    Also no one who has a clue thinks dxomark was paid off lol. They've been doing sensor analysis for a long time, before mobile phones were worth measuring they just did DSLR sensor analysis, including the top end professional grade cameras. They still do this and are still an oft referenced source not only by professionals and consumers but by other camera review sites around the web. Sensor and metric performance is just one aspects of a Camera of course, but they offer tangible and quantifiable metrics that can help you understand how cameras compare... and the latest gen of iPhones scored equal to the last gen, effectively no improvement, while the Android cameras keep leading the pack.

    It's not surprising since the leading sensors on the Mobile list on dxomark are made by Sony which also has the leading sensors in professional grade DSLR and mirroless cameras as well. Sony has made best-in-class sensors (Nikkon has used sony sensors for many of their cameras for a while now) for a long time.

    This is why anyone who has a clue just laughs at anyone questioning Dxomark or that a Sony sensor in a phone can be better than an Apple one.

    Again there are more things to consider than raw performance, much like the iPhone's new superior SoC won't get you Android style widgets, a back button, or multi-tasking if you prefer those things... just like a new Android coming out with a faster SoC won't get you the iOS UI experience (if that's your preference)... but there are important metrics to evaluate and it feels like this review downplayed all the advantages of the other phones and overplayed the CPU and GPU advantage in the new iPhones. Some of us just think that's a bit biased.
    Reply
  • ciderrules - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    Something clearly bothers you to spend so much time typing a response. Reply
  • osxandwindows - Wednesday, November 04, 2015 - link

    Naw man just felt like doing it. Reply
  • FL777 - Friday, November 06, 2015 - link

    Great comment, I thought that the authors "fell in love" with the efficiency that Apple built into its new SoC. Being computer lovers, it is somewhat foregivable. However, they do appear to be school children saying, "Wow, this bright shiny SoC is the best damn thing in the whole wide world."

    Hands down, the Note 5 and Galaxy S6 at the very least compete with the iPhone 6S and in my mind, they are better phones for a number of reasons.
    Reply
  • FL777 - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    First let me compliment the authors of this article. No other website anywhere does as thorough a job as Anandtech in objectively reviewing a smartphone. You provide solid, objective facts for your reviews. That is something most reviewers utterly fail at. That being said I have some criticisms:

    1. The iPhone 6S display is just sad compared to the Ssamung S6 and Note 5
    2. 3D Touch has been listed as buggy in other reviews and yet you don't mention this issue
    3. The Note 5 and Samsung S6 BOTH charge much more quickly than the iPhone 6S. That is VERY IMPORTANT IN THE REAL WORLD
    4. Both the Note 5 and the S6 have wireless charging, which is very convenient. The Note 5 has quick wirless charging which is revolutionary - no other phone has it.
    5. The Samsung S6 and Note 5 SoC is effectively about 7 months older thatn the iPhone 6S SoC. I hope you will be as complimentary to the Galaxy S7 SoC when it comes out in January. It is supposed to be 25% faster than the 6S SoC. The new Samsung SoC is rumored to be a beast.
    6. Also upcoming with the Galaxy S7 is alwo rumored (and this is just a rumor) to have its own 3D touch.
    7. While the iPhone 6S is faster than the Note 5 and Galaxy S6, is there really that much difference in the real world? I think you have lost your objectivity because youa re impressed with Apple's SoC. And remember, the huge gains the IPhone 6S would not really be possible with Samsung's and TMCS's chip manufacturing skills. Apple should be concerned with Samsung's advent of manufacturing its own SoC chips - by all accounts, the Exnyos 7420 is a brilliant SoC and it STILL competes with the iPhone 6S, though it is nearly eight months older.
    8. MANY professional reviewers including some professional photographer reviewers have stated that the S6 camera, the Note 5 camera and the LG4 camera are all better than the iPhone 6S camera. One rason is that they can take RAW photographs and have full manual control. Again, it appears that you have lost your objectivity when reviewing the camera functions.
    9. I own the Galaxy S6 and one of my friends that I dance with has the iPhone 6S and you are INCREDIBLY wrong in your conclusions for low-light situations. At our dances, my friend's iPhone 6S is UNUSABLE, the sensor simply doesn't let enough light in My Samsung S6 has become the goto phone to take ALL of the crtical videos and pictures when we dance. One of my other friends owns an iPhone 6 and he can't use his phone at our dances. He borrowed my phone to vidoe his friend last week when his friend was dancing with a famous champion.

    Simply said, you couldn't be more in error about the low-light capabliities of the two phones. Frankly the iPhone 6S is embarrassing in really dark situations.

    I agree that the iPhone 6S and the Galaxy S6 / Note 5 are the two best phones on the market right now. Where we disagree is that the iPhone 6S is that much better than the Note 5 and S6. The display issue itself is embarrassing. The iPhone doesn't even have an HD screen. The 6S is the fastest smartphone on the planet right now, but so what????? It is only a microsecond faster than Samsung's last generation phones and most people won't care. Applies IOS is superior in its cohesiveness, Android is catching up quickly.
    Reply
  • blackcrayon - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    The display issue is far from "embarrassing". What's embarrassing is having a display that taxes your GPU to the point that you can't maintain top level performance over the course of an intense 3D graphics session. I'll take performance over more pixels any day, the small observable difference is a terrible tradeoff some of the manufacturers are making just to post a larger number on a spec sheet. Reply
  • StormyParis - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    I don't do 3D games, so I don't really care about gaming performance. I'll take a crisp display anytime. Reply
  • R. Hunt - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    Same here. Besides, I think Samsung's displays are superior because of Amoled, not because of higher pixel density. Reply
  • MattL - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    Though they are superior in both quality and higher pixel density. Don't get me wrong, iPhone uses the best of phone LCD screens, but they just can't top OLED screens and they haven't for the last couple generations. Reply
  • RealityMonster - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    The pixel density is an illusion--it's just killing your battery. At normal viewing distances, you can't see the pixels at all at iPhone resolutions. The numbers are nice and big for the newer displays, but they're super wasteful. Reply
  • KoolAidMan1 - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    But hey, who cares about practicality and real world returns when you have numbers on a specsheet to brag about, right? Reply
  • RealityMonster - Wednesday, November 04, 2015 - link

    Probably more to the point, when you're racing to the bottom in price and trying to differentiate yourself from the Android phone next to you, if you don't have bigger numbers, nobody's going to care about you. Android phones are definitely less pricey, but there's a penalty to pay for that. Reply
  • FL777 - Friday, November 06, 2015 - link

    Hmmmm you are not corrrect. When you zoom in with the S6 or Note 5 it becomes relevant. Further every major professional reviewer has rated the S6 and Note 5 displays as the best. Displaymate, one of the most objective and respected display reviewers in the world, have rated the Note 5 display as the best display ever on a smartphone. The Samsung S6 is not far behind.

    Further, the Note 5 display doesn't sap the battery to the point that the phone will not perform. The Note 5 has one of the better battery lives in smartphones - so it is VERY practical. Further, Samsung will replace the battery for a whopping $45.00 when it wears out. In every way, Samsung is just becoming a better phone than Apple's iPhone.
    Reply
  • blackcrayon - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    Still it implies the display can't be properly driven by the underlying hardware, which is a travesty. It's another reason why the UI is never as smooth as it should be. Reply
  • FL777 - Friday, November 06, 2015 - link

    Damn you are just plain ignorant! You obviously don't own the S6 or the Note 5 or you would make such stupid, ignorant remarks. The Note 5 is several months old and it STILL competes with the iPhone 6S in most speed categories. The Nexus 6P actually beats the iPhone 6S in real world speed tests.

    I get that you don't like Android phones but at the very least you can read some reviews before you make such poorly educated, juvenile remarks.
    Reply
  • FL777 - Friday, November 06, 2015 - link

    You're right, the S6 display does tax the phone's battery, I own the S6 and I can attest to that. However, the Note 5 does much better on this issue and frankly kicks the iPhone's ass. Further, you are incorrect, both the Note 5 and S6 perform well in ed tests compared to the iPhone 6S.

    And yes, my comment still stands, the iPhone's display is embarrassing compared to Samsung's displays. Every professional reviewer on the planet confirms this including Displaymate - one of the most highly regarded display reviewers in the world.

    In the end, Apple's iPhones are becoming less and less competitive with the new top tier Android phones in several important categories. Tim Cook, Apples radical homosexual CEO, is doing a terrible job running the company, despite Apples profits. Apple's profits are a result of Steve Job's genius and the iPhone was Job's creation.
    Reply
  • iSeptimus - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    The display is far better to use on the iPhone. I have just sold my S6 Edge and gone back to the 6S+ and so much happier with the screen, even at a "lowly" 1080P. Colour reproduction, viewing angle etc are so much better. Reply
  • MattL - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    Displaymate has yet to review the 6S+ screen (though I'm sure it will be coming in the next few days), but the last couple generations of Samsung phones handily beat the iPhones in those areas.

    Color reproduction is probably due to you not setting the screen mode to "Basic"... the default Samsung mode is above the sRGB gamut which gives inaccurate colors (keep in mind Samsung actually has a screen mode that supports adobe RGB so being able to go above sRGB color gamut is actually useful), in that mode the last couple generations on displaymate have achieved better color accuracy than their iPhone counterparts and I'd expect that to be the same this generation (though in fairness both are getting very color accurate that they both are excellent).

    Viewing angles, that I find hard to believe, LCDs show a far higher decrease in brightness and contrast at angles compared to the AMOLED screens... The only advantage is sometimes color accuracy at angles for LCD screen, but that's heavily downgraded by the previous factors.
    Reply
  • FL777 - Friday, November 06, 2015 - link

    The color reproduction of the S6 and the iPhone 6 are neck and neck according to objective reviews - and the Samsung S6 is rated superior to the iPhone display in most categories. Read Displaymate's reviews of both phones and Displaymate is the best in the business.

    Oh and BTW, many of the Samsung S6 owners I have talked to switched from the iPhone 6. So there are a lot of people who disagree with you.
    Reply
  • zeeBomb - Sunday, November 08, 2015 - link

    True. Reply
  • KPOM - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    3D Touch works just fine. Reply
  • FL777 - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    Sorry for all of the spelling errors in my last post, I was in a hurry. Also, there doesn't seem to be an edit function. Reply
  • brruno - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    @Anandtech

    Can you guys run geekbench a few consecutive times to see how much the performance drops ?
    Reply
  • ciderrules - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    Yes, and do it on Samsung phones as well so we can see how much further behind they get after multiple runs. Reply
  • Gatto - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    Great, great review.
    The best technical review of the web.
    Reply
  • id4andrei - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    "Looking at Basemark OS II, once again Apple is basically taking the lead across the board. The differences aren’t necessarily as enormous as they are in single-threaded browser benchmarks, but the iPhone 6s’ retain a significant overall performance lead over the next best mobile devices."

    Just for the sake of separation, the previous web benchmarks were single threaded? Why not introduce this categorization in future reviews. Single and multi-threaded benchmarks/performance - two wide sections.
    Reply
  • blackcrayon - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    That might be a good academic comparison, but doesn't say much about real world performance. I mean you can peg all 8 cores of the latest Exynos in a benchmark, but good luck finding some real world application that does that. There should be an attempt to find some more cross platform tests though, there should be enough apps for both platforms now to make an interesting comparision (Office, Adobe graphics apps, etc). Reply
  • woodsielord - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    Is it mandatory to use the word "magic" in an iPhone review? Do you even realize how much it tars an otherwise excellent review? That one word makes me question whether everything else was basically sponsored by Apple. Great review, I just hope it's honest. Reply
  • Alexey291 - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    looking at camera quality review I'm having serious doubts about the review being at all honest tbh Reply
  • beggerking@yahoo.com - Wednesday, November 04, 2015 - link

    for every "magic" "best" "awesome" etc mentioned in the Article , Apple gives anandtech $1000
    its been that way for years now.
    Reply
  • victorjr - Thursday, November 05, 2015 - link

    This! Reply
  • ben003 - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    RE: % Architecture Advantage

    ...
    164.gzip 1191 842 ... 9% ???
    ...

    My calculation: (1.4 GHz/ 1.85 GHz) * (1191 / 842) - 1 = +7 %

    What's yours ?
    Reply
  • ben003 - Saturday, November 07, 2015 - link

    @Joshua / Ryan
    I would define the architecture advantage as the percentage the A9 runs faster at the 1.4 Ghz of the A8 (or the percentage the A8 is slower if driven by the 1.85 Ghz of A9). If you agree on this your numbers are wrong.
    Reply
  • Bhairava - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    The best part is when they say "magic", speaking about 3d touch.
    Really Anandtech, you have lost my respect. I can't believe you stooped so low.
    Reply
  • dmacfour - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    Yeah, how dare they speak well of a good product. Reply
  • NYU87 - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    If this review was for an Android, Fandroids wouldn't have a problem with the author's choice of words. These Fandroids are so salty it's not even funny. Reply
  • blackcrayon - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    "Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic." - Arthur C . Clarke

    Talk about fake outrage over nothing.
    Reply
  • Bhairava - Wednesday, November 04, 2015 - link

    I'm not an Android fan, but you sirs are certainly Apple fanboys, or fashion victims. Iphone 6s is certainly an extremely good device, but this review is beyond any reasonable doubt driven by Apple itself. If you are not aware of this, if you don't notice it, you should be asking some questions on your lucidity and objectivity. There is a reason why the founder of Anandtech has been hired by Apple. Reply
  • dangerzone - Wednesday, November 04, 2015 - link

    And there is also a reason why the founder of Anandtech no longer writes for this website... because he started working for Apple. Take off your tinfoil hat. Reply
  • Bhairava - Wednesday, November 04, 2015 - link

    I'm not an Android fan, but you sirs are certainly Apple fanboys, or fashion victims. Iphone 6s is certainly an extremely good device, but this review is beyond any reasonable doubt driven by Apple itself. If you are not aware of this, if you don't notice it, you should be asking some questions on your lucidity and objectivity. There is a reason why the founder of Anandtech has been hired by Apple. Reply
  • blackcrayon - Wednesday, November 04, 2015 - link

    Facts have a pro-Apple bias, eh? Reply
  • Despoiler - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    And yet another cell phone review with no consideration to audio. A lot of people use their phones to listen to music, use speakerphone for conference calls, and record video @ concerts. While your reviews are excellent in all other areas, you are missing a huge chunk of necessary testing and analysis. Reply
  • Jumangi - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    Your looking at other things besides the phone itself. Most people are going to use headphones which is beyond the phone itself, and audio quality is also dependent on cell signal quality. Reply
  • Despoiler - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    Untrue. The audio quality the phone output's is measurable as well as the voltage it outputs to map to an acceptable impedance range of the headphones you can use. Do you honestly think that everyone uses crappy Apple earbuds or Beats headphones with their phone? Also, speaker quality and loudness is a quality of the phone not beyond the phone. How good a phone handles high SPL sound recording is as important as low SPL. Reply
  • mashuri - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    Ken Rockwell did extensive audio tests with the iPhone 6 Plus (last year's model). Hint: The audio quality is among the best. http://www.kenrockwell.com/apple/iphone-6-plus.htm Reply
  • Despoiler - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    I've actually read that the 6s has some audio issues. Hissing/buzzing. What was good before doesn't appear to be solid across the board with this iteration. Reply
  • osxandwindows - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    Ios problem other iPhones have it not mine tho. Reply
  • kmmatney - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    I haven't done real tests, but overall I'd say my 6S plus has better audio that any other smartphone we've owned. So I've compared it against other iPhone and Android models, but I've never compared to the HTC M1. Nothing to complain about, for sure, onboard sound is clean and relatively loud when needed. Reply
  • mashuri - Wednesday, November 04, 2015 - link

    Has their audio hardware changed in any notable way? Reply
  • mashuri - Wednesday, November 04, 2015 - link

    BTW, no hissing or buzzing on my 6s+. Very clean sound on my headphones and earbuds. Reply
  • elpadrino27 - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    I'm happy I bought the iPhone 6S Plus. Feels great after switching from the 5S. Just to let you guys know, in India, the iPhone 6S plus models are shipping with 10W power bricks in the box :) Reply
  • zeeBomb - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    I heard of that...I guess India has more smartphone enthusiasts than here! But really, I hope apple can fix that in 2016. Reply
  • davidbressler - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    Minor "correction" (I think).

    In the first table comparing the change from the 6 (both versions) to 6s (both versions) I think you left out the new front camera flash (the selfie flash). It's significant in that Apple created a new chip to drive turning the display into a flash.

    David
    Reply
  • metayoshi - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    I'm surprised and very excited to hear that the iPhone 6s is using NVMe as their storage interface protocol. We're living in an exciting future. Reply
  • Turbofrog - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    I fundamentally disagree with the technical assessment you guys have with respect to the camera. It's indefensible that Apple chose to use such a small sensor for their new camera given that the standard for flagship quality has moved forward since the iPhone 6 last year.

    I understand your argument for Z-height, but one could simply use the same physical focal length and accept the wider field of view. This is possible because the iPhone sensor possesses no actual technical advantages over it's competitors, it merely benefits from Apple's image processing expertise.

    In essence, there is an iPhone sensor available to crop down to inside every single Galaxy S6, LG G4, or Lumia 950. With 12MP in 17.3mm^2, that's essentially the same pixel density that its 16MP or 20MP larger sensor competitors have. So if you don't like the wider field of view? Simply crop your image, and you will have the same pixel-level quality (absent processing) as you're getting from the iPhone for free.

    And I would argue that given how much processing goes on behind the scenes to correct every single facet of a smartphones imaging chain, the geometric distortion associated with a wider lens, larger image circle, or faster aperture is really a moot point. There's probably a reason that you don't have access to the RAW files coming from an iPhone, and it's not because they look amazing. There are already dozens of lossy operations going on to correct distortion, remove chromatic aberration and colour casts, and lighten vignetting. It's not as if the iPhone's slower lens visibly demonstrates dramatically sharper corners or more detail than its competition, so again I don't understand why you are defending this decision.

    TL;DR - the iPhone sensor and lens are technically behind the competition, a decision which only reduces image quality, and can only be realistically defended on the basis of cost-reduction measures.
    Reply
  • JoshHo - Friday, November 06, 2015 - link

    A wider field of view causes different optical compromises to be taken. In order to maintain acceptable MTF at the edges detail at the center of the photo is often compromised in response. Given the enormous issues I've seen with the Xperia Z3v with distortion, field curvature, and other aberrations I would need evidence to really believe this. Reply
  • akdj - Tuesday, November 03, 2015 - link

    Hi Josh and Ryan,
    Many, MANY thanks for the insight and in depth review. I've just finished my second read (it was late last night I noticed the review and read through) and your experiences mimic mine. With a single exception. I'm a business owner, have been over 26 years now and use phones for the business and personal. I also outfit employees so I have a chance to stay 'ambidextrous', keeping a foot in Android, rest of the body in iOS ... But some things I do enjoy on both my older Note 4, & newer S6. No intrigue with the Note 5 other than its SoC, speed of internal storage and design over my older N4. As an S6 Edge owner I'm well aware of the speeds uninstalling, installing apps, opening them, the 'feel" of the newer 2015 Sammy phones as well as the exceptional speed of the Exynos processor. That said, you made a remark I don't quite agree with
    "The second generation of TouchID isn’t quite as life-changing, but it’s a welcome improvement nonetheless. Again, this is a case where there was friction in the user experience that wasn’t really noticeable until it was gone. Obviously, Apple is no longer the only one at this level of user experience with fingerprint scanners but they are keeping up."
    I'm not sure which phone you've found that parities the iPhone 6s/6+s for FP register. As it's certainly not the S6/S6+/Note 5 or LG (I've got one of their freebie 8" LG tabs from AT&T runnin LP). I'm hoping anyway lol. My silly S6 is just finally starting to correctly register 50% of the time with the 5.1 update. The previous six months I was lucky to have my thumb recognized 1 of 5 times. And it's registered as FOUR different 'fingers'.
    I'm also an owner of the 6+s and even checking the time or setting an Altman, turning the flashlight on, etc...it's so damn quick, I'm automatically on the home screen. It's ...pardon the pun, lightning fast and immediate. I guess I'm curious as to which OEM Apple is keeping up with as I had the 5s and 6+ standard as well. The Note 4 is a useless implementation and the S6, while better is a LONG way off from 'keeping up with...' Apple again IMHO. Genuinely curious as to the OEM making better or even similar performing and 'protective' measures than Apple.
    Other than that silly nitpick, I agree completely and haven't enjoyed an iPhone as much since the iPhone 4 and its HiDPI display. If I recall, another 'first', wasn't it? (Like the 5s FP reader, actually able to 'read an FP ;)). Maybe it's my aging mid 40s eyes but the higher resolutions and larger displays have literally kept pace with my deteriorating vision!

    Once again, many thanks for the perfectly balanced nerd/everyday 'Joe n Jane' subjective review of 'real world use'. Always refreshing to hear... I mean read your reviews, un-rushed to keep up with the herds the day after release or a week post NDA, minus the carrying around and using ...or simple resolution, 100% 'chart n number' reviews.
    Loved it. And I'm loving the iPhone 6s+. It's truly a computer in my pocket. I know you briefly touched on the expanded radios both WiFi and LTE, another maybe at first unnoticeable unless ...again as you mention an iCloud restoration of significant size, but a HUGE end user boon. These are incredibly fast, seemingly more 'stable' in 5MHz mode. (Maybe a bad word, stable but hard to put my finger on it, as older modems on the iPhone with AC/5MHz or is it GHz? Now I'm lost. This one seems faster, more efficient and stable than earlier versions )
    My wife has an identical iPhone 6+s. 128. Hers is Sammy mine TSMC. Neither has shown any significance in battery draw than the other. Mine measures 2238/4437 in GBench, hers 2242/4405 after six runs ...that's the mean. Power and efficiency are nearly identical after a weekend at our cabin we both had single digit %'s and used them nearly the same the entire weekend.
    Very VERY great phone
    J
    Reply
  • MarcSP - Wednesday, November 04, 2015 - link

    Thanks for your explanation :-). Still, I think there must be something else. I mean, most Samsung phones also use amoled and did not get such a low score in browsing, and the Snapdragon 800 is not a very slow SoC. Even today there are many low and even middle-end phones sold with weaker SoC. Reply
  • zodiacfml - Wednesday, November 04, 2015 - link

    i dont like apple but their engineering and design is very impressive. i wonder how the new cpu compares to a Core M. Reply
  • tharun118 - Wednesday, November 04, 2015 - link

    The best phone? Seriously? I've seen a lot of people saying iPhone as THE BEST phone, but AnandTech? Come on.. I believe that there can never be a "THE BEST phone". Yes, iPhone 6+ has a very good SoC, reliable camera, 3D Touch, etc, but like every flagship phone, there are compromises and drawbacks. For me, I choose a smartphone based on 4 major aspects. First, the screen. I know Apple lovers always defend their 320+ PPI screen saying that's more than enough and they don't need anything more. But the truth is, they are far behind Samsung and that will likely change in 7 or 7s. Second, the camera, this is purely subjective, there are people who'd prefer photos from an iPhone and there are people who'd prefer photos from 2015 android flagships (S6, Note 5, G4, 6P, etc). Third, battery and performance: Apple is better here on a tiny margin due their vertical integration. I think Android phones will never reach the exact smoothness in performance and efficiency in power consumption of the latest iPhone, due to fragmentation. Fourth, customisation: No comments here, but I understand there are lots of people who'd happily use their phone the way their manufacture tells them to. I'm definitely not one among them. I try to balance all these 4 aspects and my choice this year was a Galaxy S6. Of course, there are bonus features such as, wireless charging, quick charge (very useful), IR port, etc. But still, I wouldn't call S6 as THE BEST. Neither is an iPhone 6+. Reply
  • Vincog - Wednesday, November 04, 2015 - link

    I got iphone 6S with samsung chip here, and my battery will decrease 1% every 5 minute in use or 1% every 15 minute standby... ( take a note all background refresh off, location off, only hey siri on ) ..Even my iphone 5s is more better than this one!! 😭😭😭😭 Reply
  • Vincog - Wednesday, November 04, 2015 - link

    I got iphone 6S with samsung chip here, and my battery will decrease 1% every 5 minute in use or 1% every 15 minute standby... ( take a note all background refresh off, location off, only hey siri on ) ..Even my iphone 5s is more better than this one!! 😭😭😭😭 Reply
  • Tigran - Wednesday, November 04, 2015 - link

    ***
    Looking at GFXBench, which is an infinite loop of the T-Rex on-screen benchmark to approximate intensive video gaming we see that the iPhone 6s doesn’t last very long either, but the performance throughout the test is incredible. Due to 1334x750 display resolution and strong GPU, the iPhone 6s manages to last the entire test without any notable throttling, and effectively pegged at the refresh rate of the display.
    ***
    Why V-Sync (which limits T-Rex on-screen by 60 fps) is ignored? And what about this throttling evidence (by 20-22% in GFXBench off-screen):
    http://forums.anandtech.com/showpost.php?p=3772777...
    Reply
  • blackcrayon - Wednesday, November 04, 2015 - link

    They mentioned that the 6s+ throttled slightly due to the higher resolution, so it stands to reason that the 6 would also throttle when rendering a higher resolution offscreen. But it's nowhere near the throttling of any of the competitors, games are still remaining playable throughout a reasonable gaming session. Reply
  • Tigran - Wednesday, November 04, 2015 - link

    You don't get it. It's not about resolution - it's about T-Rex on-screen which limits performance to 60 fps. Without this limit iPhone 6s performance would be much higher, so it is incorrect to mention T-Rex on-screen discussing iPhone 6s throttling. If there is throttling, it can decrease from 100 to 70 fps, but you will see only 60 fps during the whole test - because of V-Sync. And there is evidence off throttling in Manhattan (which doesn't reach 60 fps limit) actually - see my link above (20-22% throttling). I can add that popular Russian laboratory (overclockers.ru) tested throttling of iPhone 6s via Basemark Metal, and they found enormous throttling there - from 911 down to 525 (74%). Reply
  • zhiliangh - Wednesday, November 04, 2015 - link

    Thank you! I have been waiting for your review before upgrading any phone this year. This is a must-read iphone review. Reply
  • Spunjji - Wednesday, November 04, 2015 - link

    I have a bit of a gripe regarding the conclusions in the camera section. The LG G4 is clearly providing better images at night than the iPhone 6s and 6s Plus - granted there is "less motion blur" in the Apple images, but they're also quite clearly underexposed by at least a stop. It therefore seems odd to conclude that a product which produces grainier, less-detailed and murkier images than the competition is better. You could produce similarly non-blurry results on the G4 by adjusting exposure compensation and then have the best of both worlds! Reply
  • flyingfiddle - Wednesday, November 04, 2015 - link

    Truly amazed and convinced that Apple has the best SoC of any phones, and their investment on the SoC paid off. So does their investment on refined iOS experience. I am Android guy but I have to admit I really wish SoC on Android could catch up one day, sooner the better.

    On the other hand, just because Apple is great in some areas does not mean they should get away with other things that's not as great. The raw power of a high end phone has become more than sufficient for many general users, such that making it more powerful is starting to generate diminished return. I could think of many things that I wish iPhone has, such as longer battery life (i know it's great, relatively, but why not push the boundary?), better screen/body ratio, external memory, more setting and better UI in the camera app, etc.
    Well, still not my cup of tea but truly wish Android SoC could catch up one day. That's assuming Android platform survive that long (they have the largest market share but really don't make much money). I hope my money helps supporting them a bit longer..
    Reply
  • tytung - Wednesday, November 04, 2015 - link

    Can anyone comment on the iPhone 6s Plus frame rate dropping issue ? Animations looks choppy and the frame rate looks like only about 30 fps, unlike 60 fps on the 6s. If the GPU on the phone is so powerful this should not be an issue. In fact, for a phone this expensive UI frame rate drop is really a shameful problem. Reply
  • polmes - Thursday, November 05, 2015 - link

    Got tired of iOS and moved to Android (Galaxy S6) earlier this year, but Apple definitely deserves an applause for being basically the only one to keep innovating in the mobile space. kudos Reply
  • Socius - Thursday, November 05, 2015 - link

    Hmmmm...any idea why your iPhone 6s Plus scored just 15800 in Google octane when mine scored over 18,000? That's a pretty big discrepancy at 15%. Does your phone have a Samsung CPU? Mine is TSMC. Reply
  • zeeBomb - Thursday, November 05, 2015 - link

    Both units are TSMC. Reply
  • Socius - Thursday, November 05, 2015 - link

    Then there's something off as there is no way the 6s plus should be scoring just 15,800 on octane. Reply
  • mortimerr - Thursday, November 05, 2015 - link

    I've never actually owned an Apple product in my life. All the way back to the original iPod classic. But I will probably finally be changing my stupid principle of 'No Apple Products'.

    The Android landscape recently has been going back instead of forward. Android 5-6 showcase minor improvements over 4.4.4 (Personally I also prefer Halo. Marshmallow and Lollipop looks slightly cartoony), battery life isn't that much of a leap (a lot of devices are experiencing the mobile radio active bug), and due to the fact that the high end market in the East is so saturated, most OEMs are cutting costs and putting out mid tier phones that lack top end hardware.

    A lot of recent releases for Android have a great price point but either have a terrible camera (sensor, pixel size, post processing etc) or the IPS display leaves something to be desired, or it's this or it's that. The only OEM pushing the platform forward is Samsung. But, to be quite frank, I find those devices ugly to look at in every way from the bezel, UI skin, back, front, etc.

    Where as Apple continues to simply improve with every iteration. Dual source fab at 14nm! What? 3D touch, increasing the ppi, maintaining solid battery life, great low light camera performance. Offering a big size and a small size with the same internals.
    Sony also did this but I don't see the 810 as a very good chip going forward. Especially when it's already pretty far behind in performance to the Exynos and A#. I'll look forward to see if Sony updates the Z line.

    I want to wait for Q2'16 for when devices with the 820 start being released, but what's the point when every device will inevitably have some drawback or large flaw or straight up just not be released in N. America.
    Reply
  • JTRCK - Friday, November 06, 2015 - link

    Where do you want phones to go? There's not much else they can do. A phone being imperfect is "always" the case. There is always something lacking in all these devices, including the iPhone 6S and 6S Plus. One of the first mentions in this review is that the author is still using an HTC One M7 from years ago. Because quite honestly, that was the pinnacle of smartphone design plus an excellent combination of fluid software, excellent performance, and an excellent night performance for a camera (though everything else about that camera was a downgrade). That 3 year old phone is still a very good performer today.

    Increasing processor/RAM/Storage speed is all excellent and it's expected, but the benefits from such increases are hardly felt by the user on day to day usage. Especially if the software is done properly. Example: I have an old iPhone 4s at home that I use for music streaming that consistently beat out my previous note 4 on application opening, multitasking, sound output quality, web surfing speed, etc. Which phone is superior? Which phone is better? Did AnandTech give that iPhone 4s the BEST award? In my view Apple has always been the king of software and hardware performance. They can get a device with 512mb of ram to outperform a Note 4 with a multicore processor and with 3GB of ram. They should always get the BEST award. But is the BEST (100%) really worth $1,200.00 when the second BEST (99%) is half the price?

    I'm not talking about Samsung here. Their phones are expensive with crappy performance. I'm talking about the Moto X Pure, HTC One M9/10, Nexus 6P, etc. I used an iPhone 6S Plus for 2 weeks (and an iPhone 6 Plus for 4 months before that) and returned it for the Nexus 6P. I find the 6P to be a much better phone than the iPhone 6S plus in almost every aspect. It charges faster, it opens applications just as fast, I can multitask faster with the 6P with a side launcher without ever having to see a home screen. I can transition within an app at a faster pace due to dedicated back buttons. A simple thing as not having a "button" to go back a task annoyed me to no end with the iPhone. Not to mention all the limitations of iOS. The only benefit of iPhone for me were the integrations with my Macbook, but other than that. I disliked both iPhones.

    The iPhone has all this amazing technology at its core, but my grandmother would never know when using her new 6S. And that's how it should be. I'm more amazed that a Nexus 6P costs half what an iPhone costs while still managing to do just as much, if not more. I honestly found nothing revolutionary about the 6S Plus while using it. In fact, I found it to be quite similar to the 6 Plus. Which I found to be quite similar to the iPhone 4s. Just much larger. And in terms of OS performance, vanilla android at this point is quite simply just as visually pleasing, power efficient, responsive and performant as iOS.
    Reply
  • FL777 - Friday, November 06, 2015 - link

    Amusingly, there is a YouTube real world speed test between the Nexus 6P and the iPhone 6S and the Nexus 6P BEATS THE IPHONE 6S!!!!!

    http://www.frequency.com/video/nexus-6p-vs-iphone-...

    So much for the iPhone 6S SoC being unbeatable LOL.
    Reply
  • Blark64 - Friday, November 06, 2015 - link

    Umm, did you watch the video? The difference was milliseconds, and with a "hand-done" test like this the phones were well within the margin of error, and essentially tied. Also, that was possibly the least informative benchmark I've ever seen, since repeatedly launching apps in a tight cycle is something that essentially no one actually does in the real world. That's why benchmarks that are either: more reflective of the real world, or synthetic and scientifically repeatable (like Geekbench and the various browser benchmarks), are probably a better guide. Reply
  • Mummiez - Saturday, December 26, 2015 - link

    There is also a video on YouTube showing a dancing man wearing a horse mask. Even more amusingly, I must add.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ffDPTKn7HiY
    Reply
  • mike3332015 - Saturday, November 07, 2015 - link

    if this gets the second highest award then can someone tell me what got the first highest award? Reply
  • TechnologyGuy - Saturday, November 07, 2015 - link

    Good review but as many have pointed out, as is customary at Anand, very biased in favor of Apple products. Over-reaching statements are used throughout the article and the conclusions simply don't follow from the evidence. No doubt the 6s is one of the top smartphones on today's market but it lags in camera performance (Z5, S6, G4, P6 are all better) and the poor screen is simply unacceptable by today's standards (no, the dpi is high enough argument holds no water; at least for me I can tell at a first glance when compared to other phones). Software is of course more subjective and for normal usage, there is no clear winner between iOS and Android. Stability is non-argument as I have had far more issues on my iPhones than my Galaxy S6, not to mention having to fix my GF's phone after iOS 9 bricked it. Lack of customization in iOS (short of jailbreaking which is still limiting) is also a deal-breaker for those of us who care.

    So is it a good phone? Sure I'd agree. But it's far from the leaders in the market today and to claim such is simply false.
    Reply
  • ciderrules - Saturday, November 07, 2015 - link

    Yet another person upset at the cold, hard, fact that Apple is killing it with fantastic hardware. Reply
  • TechnologyGuy - Sunday, November 08, 2015 - link

    Fantastic hardware? I guess you didn't even read my comment. The SoC is a very nice engineering achievement but it does nothing to alter my user experience as a power user. The features I personally require are simply subpar in today's flagship market (camera & screen as I have clearly pointed out).

    There is nothing to be upset about - Apple has come up with a very nice product that fits well into the top end of the market but there is no question it misses the mark in several areas, at least for users like myself. I am more disappointed in the biased nature of the review than the actual product.
    Reply
  • ciderrules - Sunday, November 08, 2015 - link

    Power user? iOS users are the true power users as they actually can choose from high-end software to do real work on their devices. Or do you think widgets or minor customization makes you a power user?

    Oh, and saying Anand is biased? Typical response from people who dislike Apple and are having trouble trying to accept they make the best smartphone.
    Reply
  • TechnologyGuy - Monday, November 09, 2015 - link

    Why would I accept that Apple makes the best smartphone when the company does not? Blind favoritism serves no purpose in the tech world. For that matter, I do not think any company makes the "best" products. Such a term is irrelevant and frankly counter productive. I expect Anand and its readers to be more discerning than that. Or perhaps I am wrong.

    I have owned and still own several Apple products. Are they definitively superior to their competitors? No, they are not, but they serve their purpose, as any adequate or premium technology product should.

    I have no doubt that some developers have chosen the iOS ecosystem for specialized applications; however, those are not relevant to my needs. As I pointed out very clearly, I have very specific requirements which the iPhone 6s has not met. I am simply pointing out the biases in this review. If it meets your needs, great, then I guess you are one happy customer.

    As a former computer/electrical engineer who specialized in signal processing, I need no one to tell me a what a power user is, nor would I be inclined to respond further unless there is some valid, well-constructed points to be discussed.
    Reply
  • Samus - Saturday, November 07, 2015 - link

    11MB cache on a mobile SOC? Damn!? Reply
  • zeeBomb - Sunday, November 08, 2015 - link

    Damnnnn! Reply
  • Zoidberg - Saturday, November 07, 2015 - link

    Even for AT this is laughable... no mention of the fact that Plus is 25% heavier with a smaller screen and battery than Edge+. Fanboys or sellouts? Reply
  • nerd1 - Saturday, November 07, 2015 - link

    720p screen in 2015, worse battery life, no sd slot, no wiress charging, terrible camera and still THE BEST phone huh?

    It has best performing processor, no one argues that, but I still wont touch it with a stick.
    Reply
  • JaytB1 - Sunday, November 08, 2015 - link

    I use iPhone mainly because of the better security/privacy, no carrier/manufacturer delay/total dismissal of security/OS updates, earlier/exclusive/better releases of triple A games/apps and uncluttered interface. I agree with the gold award, the iPhone 6s (plus) is the first phone in a while that made me see that there are still possibilities to innovate in the smartphone space.

    I've seen Android users avidly defending their high PPI's, megapixels, core counts. Oh, but it's customizable and I can put a ton of widgets on my homescreens. There's only a small minority of tech obsessed people who care (proof is in the huge low/medium end market share, indicating the amount who don't care for specs but just want a working phone). For me, all I want is to launch an app, not stare at my home screen. In the past, Android users where more often than not boasting about benchmarks and how their hardware was superior. Now that the tables are turned, hardware all of a sudden doesn't matter as much anymore or the tests must be rigged by a biased Anandtech (who has nothing to gain and everything to loose if they were posting nonsense).

    I've seen Samsung and other manufactures add so many gimmicks to their phones, many of which are plain impractical (try doing 'airview' while jogging and you'll get the picture).
    I admit that fast charging would be nice but, for me, completely unnecessary (it's not like an iPhone charges slow in the first place).
    Then there's wireless charging, you do realize that you still have to plug in the charge pad with a cable right? So the only difference is that you don't need to plug that cable into your phone, but you'll need more power to fill your device up as compared to using a cable (more waste power) and a permanent spot for your charging pad. Again, for me I don't really see the appeal for that either.
    We could also talk about PPI but to keep it brief, I'd rather have a device perform well with individual pixels I can't distinguish, than a screen that would impact performance with pixels I still can't see... But more of them.
    I could go on about how a blind photo evaluation test on a respected Android site had Android users voting the iPhone 6s as having the best overall picture quality, but now that the iPhone scored a tiny bit lower than some Android phones in one test, it suddenly has a 'far inferior' camera. Then there's the RAM, curved screens and so many other things I could mention, but my point is that I think Android users can't recognize a genuine game-changing feature-list because they're so used to getting bombarded by tons of arguably useless high spec lists and gimmicks that are marketed as 'the next big thing'.
    It's almost as if Google took over the reality distortion field from Apple. Just wait a couple of years when all Android devices have 'Android sense' (or something) displays (3D touch), THEN it will be a game changing feature because they'll have 1000's of pressure levels they can sense as compared to the 'useless' iPhone's (hypothetical) 128 levels.

    Don't get me wrong here, I'm not trying to bash Android or people who choose to use it, I just don't like those who post nonsense without anything to back it up just so they can sleep at night having convinced themselves that they bought the right phone. I've been a reader of this site for years and believe their test results to be correct, as they've always been. People who claim otherwise should come with facts or stop sprouting nonsense.

    I, for one, agree with the review and think it's the phone with the best all round feature set on the market today. Is it perfect? Of course not, but it's a genuinely forward thinking and exceptional smartphone in a stale smartphone market, and that deserves that gold award in my book.

    Thanks for the review!
    Reply
  • Aritra Ghatak - Sunday, November 08, 2015 - link

    As the reviewers pointed various aberration and distortions associated with using a brighter lens and that it is wise Apple went with the F 1/2.2 aperture lens. Could you please explain how Samsung manages with an F 1/1.9 aperture lens in Galaxy S6? Or for that matter the F 1/1.8 lens in LG G4 or Nokia Lumia 720/730? Reply
  • patamat - Sunday, November 08, 2015 - link

    Well, we all know who Anand went to work for after writing few "balanced" reviews like this one.
    (apple ...)
    Reply
  • Psymac - Monday, November 09, 2015 - link

    Where is the phone function analysis of this iPhone? Reply
  • zimmybz - Tuesday, November 10, 2015 - link

    I guess I'll try to build the bridge for the Droid guys here that are having a hard time.

    I haven't had an iPhone since the Galaxy S came out. Been a droid user since.

    I recently got a 6S Plus. I sold a Note 5 and cancelled a pre-order for a Nexus 6P.

    I will say it since nobody else will. The Note 5 has a great camera, S-Pen is cool, and enough RAM to keep multi-tasking running, but otherwise it's a shitty phone. The battery life and Touchwiz still leave a LOT to be desired. Build quality is great, but it suffers from what every other Droid phone suffers from - fractured, fragmented hardware eco-system and specs driven production. (Hang on)

    If you need to know why you should cancel a 6P pre-order, look at the subreddit (Holy crap, lol.)

    Anyways, in my first week with the 6S Plus, I hit 22% battery with 88 hours standy and 13 hours usage. That is completely insane.

    Back to the Note 5 - look at the graphs on the review here. This phone absolutely DOMINATES the Note 5 across the board, a fact which I can confirm first hand.

    I can also tell you that holding the phones side by side looking at the same picture taken on the Note 5, the displays are functionally indistinguishable from the other. (So much for all that resolution, I guess)

    This is a large reason why the Note stutters against the 6S Plus. It's pushing a LOT of pixels that aren't really evident in day to day use, especially sitting next to the iPhone.

    I guess I finally reached the point, I just want the best phone every year regardless of manufacturer or software.

    Until Google makes it's own hardware in house and breaks free of QualComm, Apple is going to beat them every year going forward. I'm not 20 anymore, I don't care about a home screen widget. I want the battery not to drain from some stupid Google Play Services memory drain while the phone is sitting on my desk.

    I don't want Samsung Services blowing up the battery either. And - NO - I should not have to root kit, Package Disable, Power Saver, Turn off Location, etc, etc, etc. I paid $1000 for a premium handset with lots of features.

    Oddly enough, the iPhone can leave all that crap on and STILL get good battery life. The arguments for Android are shrinking right now. I'll never buy another Samsung phone again. I will miss the S-Pen, but Touchwiz is heinous, even in it's current iteration.

    I would really love to see Google put up a fight in the premium handset market, but I don't think their hearts are in the hardware QUITE yet.

    Anyways, happy 6S Plus user here, 4+ year droid convert at the moment. We'll see what next year brings.
    Reply
  • zeeBomb - Wednesday, November 11, 2015 - link

    Ss or bs (sorry I just had to) Reply
  • JTRCK - Friday, November 13, 2015 - link

    I actually returned a 6S Plus for the Nexus 6P and the main reason was PRICE. They are as equally performant in day to day tasks, but the Nexus 6P had better multitasking performance for me due to the buttons and added power of a side launcher which is not possible on iPhone. I basically never have to go to the home screen again when using Google docs, searching the web, etc... I tried both out for about a week. The only feature I liked on the iPhone 6S Plus better was the cooler white colors of the LCD; other than that the Nexus 6P was better "for me" in every aspect. The phone "flies" in every sense of the word. No stutters, no lag, no unresponsiveness (typical of Samsungs). I have been an iPhone user since the 3GS. I also used the iPhone 6 Plus this year for 5 months.

    And I truthfully don't understand all this commotion over the new iPhone 6S Plus being the best phone ever released. Outside of "3D touch," there is not much difference in day to day performance or general use between both this year's model and last year's model. That is generally a great testament to iOS stability and performance. So much so that my old iPhone 4s opened apps faster, surfed faster, multitasked faster, etc, than my now defunct Note 4. Apple has been on top of their game for years, IDK why android fans have only now noticed. But iOS is truly very limited. You will sooner or later find out the gates keep you truly locked in.

    But the main factor for me, again, was price. I do not in any way find the iPhone to be a better phone than the Nexus 6P. In fact, I find its system to be inferior in a multitude of ways. Is the iPhone Better than the Note 5 and all its clumsy and useless features? Yes. But the Nexus 6P is in a category all its own. Especially for $650. That is exactly what I paid for the 128GB model compared to the $1,170 I paid for the iPhone 6S Plus.
    Reply
  • astroboy888 - Wednesday, November 11, 2015 - link

    "FinFET transistors are necessary because as transistors get smaller their leakage (wasted power) goes up, and without FinFETs leakage would spiral out of control. In fact that’s exactly what happened on the 20nm nodes from Samsung and TSMC; both companies thought the leakage of planar transistors could be adequately controlled at 20nm, only for leakage to be a bigger problem than they expected"

    It is not they "discovered" 20nm leakage was high; therefore they switched to 16nm FinFet. This is an incorrect comment.

    FinFet transistors structure had been on the road map and in development at TSMC for more than 10 years. TSMC's first finfet transistor was demonstrated in 2002 when the inventor Professor Chen-Ming Hu of UC Berkeley was working at TSMC as CTO. Therefore Finfet process had always been on the roadmap for 16nm process. The 20nm planar process had always been on the road map as a planar process. Every process node takes about 3-5 years to develop, so the customers (semiconductor chip designers) signs up 3-5 years before hand to co-work with TSMC to design a chip for that process. These were communicated ahead of time and contracts where signed.

    In the late 1990s and early 2000s, the semiconductor industry was pushing for SOI (Silicon On Insulator such as GaAs "Gallium Arsenide), which completely eliminates leakage current. But the transistor performance turned out to be too unpredictable and too expensive to manufacture. Therefor the industry stuck with silicon, until FinFet structure was invented in 2000 and manufacturing process perfected some 10 years later.
    Reply
  • gonsolo - Thursday, November 12, 2015 - link

    If I may suggest something: I'd like to see app startup times as a benchmark from iPhone 5 onwards. This is something I'm doing a lot; waiting for apps to start. Reply
  • zeeBomb - Thursday, November 12, 2015 - link

    Let's go to 515! Reply
  • Rdmkr - Tuesday, November 17, 2015 - link

    Every time I try to take these phones seriously I take one look at those barren 2010 size bezels and - sorry - my stomach contents just start to surface. And what about that brick-like near 200 grams weight of the 6s plus. Androids would never get away with such design transgressions but here nobody bats an eye. Reply
  • fl0w3n - Saturday, November 21, 2015 - link

    what caused the significant jump in the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus bench results versus the ones posted in previous reviews? Reply
  • Miller1331 - Tuesday, December 01, 2015 - link

    Cue the apple fanboys.. Reply
  • xCyborg - Thursday, December 03, 2015 - link

    About that Mobile SoC GPU Comparison, I still don't understand how we're still hovering around 115GFlops after all those years. Isn't the A8X supposed to hit 300GFlops? so the GT7600 should be around that number!
    I noticed a pattern with GPUs, each year their theoritical performance is reviewed to the lower. Weird.
    Reply
  • Goyim - Monday, December 07, 2015 - link

    In which Country is the iPhone manufactured? Reply
  • Goyim - Monday, December 07, 2015 - link

    Are there any phones made in America? Reply
  • kaeze - Sunday, December 27, 2015 - link

    Could you help share the Nand performance testing tool? I also want to test my IPhone 6s. I try to Google it, but I can't find anything. Reply
  • someone_youknow - Sunday, February 14, 2016 - link

    The memory latency charts show off the various cache hierarchy levels but the L1 (Data Cache) is hard to read. Does anyone know what the latency is? Reply
  • 13nBLdkL5uPmowc - Tuesday, August 16, 2016 - link

    The only big problem with android phones, windows phones, and all other smart-phones in the entire smartphone-industry in general is that their touchscreens do not compete in any way with Apple their "high-tech" and "advanced-interactive" and "intuitive-smooth-control".
    The high-frequency of interaction en nearly gapless response when using the iPhone/iPad or any other iOS powered devices is a tremendous advantage, when accuracy of the touchscreen is necessary for fast and gapless interaction. NO OTHER COMPANY DOES INCLUDE TOUCHSCREENS LIKE THEIRS, AND EVEN SOME HIGH-CLASS SMARTPHONES THAT COME CLOSE COST THE SAME OR EVEN MORE!!! Posted on Wednesday 17th of August 2016!!!
    Reply

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