The 2 Things Apple Got Wrong with the iPhone 6 Plus
Mistake 2: No Independent Rotation Lock for iPhone 6 Plus Home Screen
One of the few differences between the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus is that the home screen of the latter device can rotate into a landscape orientation. Some users may prefer the look of this mode, and there are some unique features associated with it, but there’s no way to lock or disable home screen rotation on its own. You’re only able to lock screen rotation system-wide, or not at all.
To be fair, it’s not entirely the hardware design’s fault; the annoyance factor here is exacerbated by the fact that iOS 8 still has rotation bugs, causing noticeable and frustrating delays when trying to rotate apps or the home screen. I prefer to interact with my iPhone in portrait orientation, and only ever want to go into landscape mode when an app requires it, such as watching movies with Plex or playing a side-scrolling game. But if I try to use my iPhone 6 Plus in a non-traditional position — such as lying in bed, or leaning over on the couch or in a chair — the home screen will frequently rotate into landscape mode.
This wouldn’t be so bad if the rotation effect was instant, but iOS 8 still has many bugs to work out in this regard, meaning that way too often these unintentional rotations take several seconds of animated twisting and wrist-flicking to rectify. I could turn on the rotation lock feature in the iOS Control Center but, as I said, that locks everything from rotation, including some apps that work best in landscape orientation.
These are ‘first world problems,’ sure, I get it. But they add up over the months into a frustrating experience. Both problems could be almost solved by simply moving to the 4.7-inch iPhone 6 (the smaller iPhone doesn’t have the home screen rotation feature), but I really like larger size and optical image stabilization features of the iPhone 6 Plus.
One thing is clear after five months of really getting to know my iPhone 6 Plus: Apple created a great phone, but they didn’t create a perfect phone. I can only hope that the company moves quickly to address the lock switch positioning with the next hardware update, and I don’t see any reason why they can’t address the Home Screen rotation situation with a simple software update.