Two months with the new iPhone 6 Plus

IPhonesAt the end of November, Jean and I decided to shout each other new phones for Christmas. The iPhone 4S that we each had were showing their age and the new iPhone 6 was beckoning.

Having heard about short supply and 2 week delay in delivery, we went shopping at the end of November assuming we’d get phones just before Christmas. As it turned out we walked out of the Spark shop on Lambton Quay holding two new iPhone 6 Plus’ which were active within a hour. Well done Daniel from Spark, two happy customers.

As a side note, we were Vodafone mobile customers but after their cock up with Jean’s roaming in Italy in August and the 59 minute wait on the phone for their call centre help a week or so prior, we were moving. Sorry Vodafone, you’re losing the plot in terms of support and as a result you’ve lost us as customers. By the way the 59 minute wait ended only because I hung up, not because they actually answered.

After two months using Apple’s biggest phone, I’m pleased to say that neither of us would swap them for anything. And so far, both phones are unbent and undropped and have become a necessary part of our lives.

And yes, bigger is better. The idea of using our 4S phones to sit and surf the net wasn’t an option given the screen size, but the 6 Plus is regularly used to do just that. In fact I no longer carry my iPad around as the 6 Plus has become the computer in my pocket.

The landscape mode – where you can swivel the phone 90 degrees and the desktop follows is great and the ability to use a split screen for mail and browsing is also a bonus.

It’s fast too, with all apps running without any lag and video and photos looking superb.

The downside of “Plus” is the stretch required to reach the top of the screen. Apple thought about this and with a double tap of the Home button the screen slides down for easier access but at times it is cumbersome to use and two hands are needed.

My litmus test for size was the ability to slip the phone into a jacket inside pocket. It fits perfectly and the lightness and slimness both help to not make it feel bulky.

Would we go back? No way. And now all we need to go with it is “the watch” – so roll on April.

 

We are now with TIM

A big day last Thursday.  We took the plunge and visited the local electronics store to get our technology “italianised”.  It was finally time to break the shackles of Vodafones roaming rates and start to enjoy cheap local calls and internet access.

We went into the local “Trony” shop (it’s italian for Noel Leeming I think) and plonked two iPhones, two iPads and one laptop on the counter and basically said fix it.

The young lady helping us had as good a grasp of English as we have of Italian but one hour and 4 SIM cards and a modem stick later we were customers of TIM (Telecom Italia Mobile) and everything seemed to work – and still does.

We have no exact idea of the rates we are being charged – our anglo-italia mix of language and gestures didn’t quite stretch to that. The TIM website is comprehensive and detailed but also completely in Italian which doesn’t help but we know whatever we’re paying it’s going to a lot less than Vodafone roaming rates.

The next challenge will be to top up the phones which can be done through the local Tabacchi shops which are found in every town and village.  I’m figuring we go in waving our phones and a wad of Euro notes and someone will understand.

I’ll be emailing our new numbers to everyone over the next few days.