Mobile Technology

iPhone 6s Plus vs. Moto X Style (Pure Edition)

iPhone 6s Plus vs. Moto X Styl...
Apple's iPhone 6s Plus takes on the Motorola Moto X Style (or Pure Edition in the US) in all the categories that matter.
Apple's iPhone 6s Plus takes on the Motorola Moto X Style (or Pure Edition in the US) in all the categories that matter.
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Apple's iPhone 6s Plus takes on the Motorola Moto X Style (or Pure Edition in the US) in all the categories that matter.
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Apple's iPhone 6s Plus takes on the Motorola Moto X Style (or Pure Edition in the US) in all the categories that matter.
Size
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Size
Weight
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Weight
Build (back)
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Build (back)
Build (frame)
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Build (frame)
Color options
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Color options
Display size
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Display size
Display resolution
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Display resolution
Display type
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Display type
3D Touch display
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3D Touch display
Fingerprint sensor
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Fingerprint sensor
Storage
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Storage
MicroSD slot
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MicroSD slot
Processor
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Processor
RAM
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RAM
Camera megapixels
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Camera megapixels
Optical Image Stabilization
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Optical Image Stabilization
Camera aperture (rear)
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Camera aperture (rear)
Battery
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Battery
Mobile payments
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Mobile payments
Wireless charging
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Wireless charging
Fast charging (wired)
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Fast charging (wired)
Software
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Software
Release
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Release
Starting price (full retail)
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Starting price (full retail)
View gallery - 25 images

Can Motorola's latest flagship handset topple this year's supersized iPhone? We've compared the features and specs of the iPhone 6s Plus and Moto X Style (or Moto X Pure Edition in the US) to help you decide which one is best for your needs.

Size

Size
Size

The Moto X Style/Pure is slightly smaller than Apple's offering. The Moto is, however, 52 percent thicker (though its rounded back skews that figure a bit, as its edges are much thinner than that).

Weight

Weight
Weight

Be prepared to put up with an extra 10 percent in weight if you opt for the iPhone 6s Plus. Though it is a bigger phone, so its size to weight ratio is similar.

Build (back)

Build (back)
Build (back)

You get a much broader choice of backs with the Motorola phone, thanks to the well-established Moto Maker program.

Build (frame)

Build (frame)
Build (frame)

The aluminum on the unibody iPhone wraps around to its sides, while the Moto X's metal frame is separated from whichever backing you choose.

Color options

Color options
Color options

Rose gold is new to the iPhone range this year. On the Motorola side, you get a total of 126 different color combinations (once you take into account the backing color and accent) thanks to Moto Maker's customizations.

Display size

Display size
Display size

The Moto X Style fits more screen into a smaller face thanks to its thin bezels and frame.

Display resolution

Display resolution
Display resolution

Based on pixel density, the Moto X Style has a 30 percent sharper screen.

Display type

Display type
Display type

Unusually, Motorola shuns AMOLED for its latest handset, possibly to keep the price down.

3D Touch display

3D Touch display
3D Touch display

Apple's pressure-sensitive display (which adds a new layer of depth in input, opening the door to a variety of shortcuts) is one of the big selling points of the 2015 iPhones. As of yet, other manufacturers have nothing to match it.

Fingerprint sensor

Fingerprint sensor
Fingerprint sensor

Apple's iPhones have had Touch ID since 2013, but similar technology has yet to make it to a Motorola phone – even though it's supported by Android 6.0 Marshmallow.

Storage

Storage
Storage

No mammoth 128 GB option for the Motorola handset, but the iPhone 6s Plus lacks the 32 GB middle ground that many users will find appealing.

MicroSD

MicroSD slot
MicroSD slot

It doesn't look like Apple is ever going to change its mind on microSD cards, but the Moto X Style does support expandable storage.

Processor

Processor
Processor

Both have well-matched processors under the hood and you can expect high-end performance from both flagships.

RAM

RAM
RAM

The two new iPhones got a RAM bump to 2 GB this year though the Motorola handset pips them with 3 GB.

Camera megapixels

Camera megapixels
Camera megapixels

The Motorola device wins in terms of pure megapixels, but it's not the only factor to consider. You can check out our 6s review sample shots, and we'll also have a Moto X review up before long.

OIS

Optical Image Stabilization
Optical Image Stabilization

What were we saying about other factors influencing image quality? The iPhone 6s Plus offers Optical Image Stabilization to make getting a steady, sharp shot easier.

Camera aperture (rear)

Camera aperture (rear)
Camera aperture (rear)

The Motorola handset benefits from a slightly larger aperture (allowing more light into the lens and enabling faster shutter speeds).

Battery

Battery
Battery

The iPhone has a slightly smaller battery, though it also has a slightly smaller screen to power.

Mobile payments

Mobile payments
Mobile payments

It's neck-and-neck here with two NFC payment options, Apple Pay vs. Android Pay (the latter is US-only at the time of writing).

Wireless charging

Wireless charging
Wireless charging

Evidently neither Apple nor Motorola think wireless charging is a must-have.

Fast charging (wired)

Fast charging (wired)
Fast charging (wired)

Motorola has had fast charging as a feature on its phones since 2014, and the company says the Moto X Style is the quickest yet at reaching full power once you've plugged it in.

Software

Software
Software

Android 6.0 Marshmallow is "coming soon" to the Moto X Style, Motorola says. The phone ships with a near-stock version of Android 5.1.1 out of the box, with a few extra Motorola touches and apps.

The iPhone, of course, runs iOS 9.

Release

Release
Release

Both handsets are available now.

Starting price (full retail)

Starting price (full retail)
Starting price (full retail)

No contest here – unlocked and SIM-free, the iPhone is almost double the price of the Moto X. Buyers of Motorola's flagship miss out on the iPhone's fully premium build quality, and some customers will prefer Apple's ecosystem and tight hardware/software integration ... but on a pure specs for price level, this is a big win for the Moto X.

We'll have our Moto X Pure/Style review up before long. In the meantime, you can check out Gizmag's iPhone 6s and 6s Plus review.

View gallery - 25 images
3 comments
Daishi
I really don't play games on my phone. I browse news sometimes and occasionally stream a video. I use it to help find where I am going when I am traveling but most of those things have been pretty good for a while.
Battery life is one feature that's lacking but it's not that big of a deal to plug in my phone once in awhile. Qualcomm Quick Charge partly solves that by allowing faster charge times and a hand full of phones now support it. It's even thinner than I need it to be and the screen is of sufficient size and resolution.
The last feature that my phone doesn't do as well as I need it to do is take pictures and now that I have little kids this is a really really important thing. I don't carry a DSLR around with me but I think I'm going to have to start because my cell phone photos are just not acceptable. Nearly all my photos from tonight are ruined by motion blur.
For a while I was so frustrated with stand alone digitals for the same reason I just went back to a 35mm film camera and paid to get my film developed like my parents used to.
How much larger should phones need to be to bolt an actually good camera to them? I would be willing to carry around a slightly thicker phone for a hybrid camera + phone that solves this.
equator180
OK, so these comparisons are fun to look at but.."Apple's iPhone 6s Plus takes on the Motorola Moto X Style (or Pure Edition in the US) in all the categories that matter." What about "call," quality and other aspects of the primary function (supposedly) voice calling..second of course is the digital communications ability. Very few sites do this so you're not alone, these are easy cut and past from a spec sheet into your template and presto! I'm not knocking your article just a little depth would be good..
Nicolas Zart
I resonate as well with Daishi. I don't play games and browse occasionally on my phone. My phone is primarily a phone and I use an iPod and an older iPhone for multimedia things. I don't want to mix both, since security and privacy are loose terms these days. I have an iPhone 4S and still can't bring myself to update or switch over to Android.
In the end, I'd like to see at least two newer phone OSs out there to bring back some much needed competition. Maybe also Blackberry will pick up the challenge, but I'm really hoping Firefox and Ubuntu will give us better alternatives.