Why Do iPhone 6s, 6s Plus Weigh More Than iPhone 6, 6 Plus?
A few days after Apple’s ‘Hey Siri’ media event and the official unveiling of the iPhone 6s and 6s Plus, we’re finding out that the new-gen smartphones are actually heavier than their predecessors, which is surprising, considering the Cupertino company’s oft-advertised tendency to go with thinner and lighter. Since even before they were officially announced, rumors of the new iPhones had suggested they would be made of new, sturdier build material and would be slightly thicker than the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus, and thus, unlike the latter, much harder to bend. However, as much of an obvious culprit as the switch to 7000 series aluminium might seem, it isn’t what’s responsible for Apple’s new smartphones plumping up.
According to a report by The Verge, the new aluminium alloy might be stronger than the 6000 series aluminium that formed the chassis of the previous iPhone duo, but the weight difference between the two is essentially insignificant. Following is an image from said report that gives a per-component mass overview for all four smartphones, side by side.
As you can see, the aluminium body of the iPhone 6s Plus only weighs 2 grams more than that of the iPhone 6 Plus while the iPhone 6s chassis is, in fact, a gram lighter than its predecessor’s. So, what’s the root cause? If you take a look at the difference in display weights in the chart above, you’ll notice that is where almost all of the new iPhones’ extra bulk is coming from.
The new 3D Touch technology that Apple seems to consider the innovative selling point of its latest smartphones adds, apart from an improved Taptic Engine, an entirely new layer below the Retina HD display that houses a pressure sensors array. Naturally, an extra layer of hardware requires more volume and causes increased weight, but how significant is the gain, exactly?
With the iPhone 6s adding 14 grams to its total bulk and the iPhone 6s Plus adding 20, both are roughly 11% heavier than their previous iterations. Mathematically, that’s quite a percentage, and customers upgrading from the iPhone 6 or 6 Plus are likely to notice a slight difference early on, but it shouldn’t be significant enough to to be labeled a trade off for the evolved Force Touch capability. 20 grams is the approximate weight of eight pennies (or 20 paper clips). Keeping that point in mind, it would be safe to assume the weight gain shouldn’t have much of an effect on user experience, if any at all.