NEW YORK (TheStreet) - A myriad of reviews on Apple's (AAPL) iPhone 6 and 6 Plus came out Tuesday evening, with heavy-hitting tech journalists and enthusiasts such as Re/Code's Walt Mossberg, Yahoo!'s (YHOO) David Pogue, and USA Today's Edward Baig among others.
The reviews were overwhelmingly positive on Apple's new devices, but had specific praise for the iPhone 6. Most reviewers said their personal preference would not be for the larger screen iPhone 6 Plus, Apple's first foray into the "phablet" market where Samsung has already entered. That said, all had good things to say about the 6 Plus, meaning that consumers' choice of which new device to buy ultimately comes down to personal preference.
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Apple said on Monday that iPhone 6 and 6 Plus pre-orders hit a record 4 million orders sold in the first 24 hours, exceeding supply. "While a significant amount will be delivered to customers beginning on Friday and throughout September, many iPhone pre-orders are scheduled to be delivered in October," the tech company said in a release.
Apple announced its latest iPhone versions on Sept. 9, with pre-orders available on Sept. 12. Full rollout of the smartphone in the U.S. and 9 other countries will be available starting September 19. The two new models are available in a 4.7-inch and 5.5-inch Retina HD displays.
Hard to find a reviewer that was critical of the new devices, here are 10 solid reviews of the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus.
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Walt Mossberg calls the iPhone 6 "a winner," in his review for Re/Code. "The iPhone 6 is a great upgrade for current iPhone owners, or for anyone, really. It manages to provide a much larger display in a phone that's still small enough to handle easily. It's my recommendation for the best smartphone you can buy," Mossberg wrote.
Mossberg's colleague Lauren Goode took on the iPhone 6 Plus, which is Apple's foray into the so-called phablet market, saying while she has tested Samsung's phablets before, they were too big for her personal preference.
"There are a couple of reasons why the Apple iPhone 6 Plus might also be too big for me to purchase. But I have to admit it: I'm tempted. I really like this phone," Goode wrote. "That's mostly because it's not just a smartphone; it's a statement phone. What Apple is doing isn't even especially innovative - "Us, too!" the company is shouting, as it chases after that flatbed truck filled with phablets - and yet, they've made this big phone feel fresh and desirable."
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2. The Wall Street Journal
The Wall Street Journal's Geoffrey Fowler wrote that after using both new phones for a week, Apple has "successfully addressed its size deficiency" and much more. Fowler specifically calls out Apple Pay, which has the potential to be a "real" digital wallet.
"Apple's ability to make that idea a reality where others have floundered will be the ultimate answer to Android envy," he wrote.
Fowler's biggest critique of the smartphone, in his perspective is still the battery life which he said is "mediocre" at full brightness.
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3. Yahoo! Tech
"The iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus are absolutely terrific phones. They're fast and powerful and well designed. There's not a single component that hasn't been improved. These phones are a delight to behold and to be held," Yahoo!'s David Pogue wrote.
4. USA Today
"I prefer the 6 Plus because I like the biggest of the big screens, and like that I have to squint less often. It felt fine in my jeans pocket, but won't fit every snug purse or small pair of hands," wrote USA Today's Edward Baig.
Despite that, Baig wrote he did hit "a few snags," particularly with the 6 Plus, which he attributed to "growing pains." For instance, the 6 Plus on a few occasions failed to rotate from landscape to portrait or back; the Mail app froze once for him; and another time the 6 Plus restarted on its own.
"Notwithstanding such growing pains, the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus are smartphone stars. Really big stars," he wrote.
5. Daring Fireball
"Apple keeps repeating that the iPhones 6 are 'better in every way,' and as far as I can tell that really is the case," wrote Daring Fireball's John Gruber. "Better fit and finish, better feel in hand, better display quality, faster CPU and GPU performance, better still photos, better video, better battery life, faster Wi-Fi and LTE networking speeds."
He added: "The most amazing thing about the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus is how utterly un-amazing it now seems to see Apple pull off this level of year-over-year improvement year after year after year."
6. New York Times
The New York Times' Molly Wood noted that after trying the two phones, she found that the phones' new hardware was not the best part, and that in the company's quest to deliver bigger phones to user "Apple has made one phone that is actually a little too small and one that's a little too big."
She believes the best part of the new phones is Apple's updated iOS, dubbed iOS 8, which "combines some of the advanced features of Google (GOOGL) Android with Apple's ease of use and reliability." The new software is available for consumers starting today.
7. The Loop
The Loop's Jim Dalrymple believes there is no doubt that the iPhone 6 Plus will be successful due to the consumer demand around the world for a larger screen device. For U.S. consumers though, who haven't quite adopted phablets yet, "the iPhone 6 will be the perfect upgrade."
"I found nothing significant in my week of use with either iPhone 6 model that would lead me to any other conclusion than to recommend both. Choose the one that fits your lifestyle the best and be happy," Dalrymple wrote.
Mashable's Lance Ulanoff said the choice between the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus comes down to personal preference.
"There are other smartphones that do some of the things an iPhone 6 can do. Others, like the Samsung Galaxy S5 do more," Ulanoff wrote of the iPhone 6. "It and the Amazon Fire Phone actually watch you and react to your gaze. Even so, none put it all together in quite the same way. I do miss the edges of the old iPhone design, but Apple's iPhone 6 is, for my $200, the most elegant and effective smartphone on the market."
Similarly, for a phablet, the iPhone 6 Plus "is a very good one," Ulanoff wrote in a separate review. He particularly liked how movies and games look on the device, but thinks it is heavy and of course costs an extra $100 than the "excellent iPhone 6."
Brad Molen at Engadget was generally positive on the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus, however in his deep dive review, he did find a few flaws. First, was the "excessive use" of antenna lines on the back of each device that "stick out like a sore thumb," he wrote.
Second was the fact that while the phones got thinner the camera module did not. "The result is a lens that sticks out from the rest of the chassis, which increases the likelihood of the casing and lens getting scratched," he wrote, which lead to his final criticism - the devices are prone to scratching and users will definitely need a case.
"The iPhone 6 is still the best smartphone for your money in my opinion, owing mostly to the fact that the majority of people are going to feel most comfortable using a smaller device as their daily companion of choice," wrote TechCrunch's Darrell Etherington.
Etherington went to say, "But the iPhone 6 Plus surprised me: I went into this review expecting to find it was a niche gadget, reserved for those seeking the absolute top-of-the-line, convenience be damned. Instead, I found myself getting strangely comfortable with a phone I still find difficult to use one-handed. In short, the 6 is my favorite current smartphone, but the 6 Plus is its closest competition."--Written by Laurie Kulikowski in New York.