Well folks, the time for wild-eyed rumors and clandestine reports is finally over – Apple CEO Tim Cook just officially revealed the hefty new iPhone 6 Plus and its 5.5-inch screen in Cupertino alongside a long-rumored (and handier) 4.7-inch model.
This thing won’t seem all that foreign if you frequent the geekier corners of the web, but it’s a sure sign that Apple wants to give all those other pocket-stretching phablets out there a run for their metaphorical money. The company’s live press event still chugging along (with a sketchy stream, no less), but here’s what we know so far.
There’s no two ways about it: the star of the show here is the spacious 5.5-inch 1080p Retina Display HD riding up front – to hear Apple’s Phil Schiller tell it, it’s SRGB-accurate, has an ultrathin backlight, photo-aligned IPS liquid crystals, an improved polarizer, and ion-strengthened glass. More importantly (and at long last!), the screen runs at 1080p.
You won’t notice any dramatic design differences between this model and its little brother – it’s still dramatically thinner than the iPhones that came before it (the Plus comes in at 7.1mm thick, and the angular edges of the 5s have given way to a smoother, rounder look in line with the company’s most recent batch of iPads. It looks, well, really comfortable to latch onto.
Apple’s iOS 8 got the grand unveiling treatment back at WWDC, but (to no one’s surprise) it packs a few extra features to help it feel more at home on bigger screens. Perhaps the biggest is the inclusion of a two-paned landscape mode which makes the whole thing feel a little more like a tiny iPad than an upscaled iPhone.