Verdict: A Software Winner, and Hardware Loser
If you simply tally up the wins, losses and draw, as we see them, the iPhone 6 would appear to be something of a loser. But we're not advocating analysis as arithmetic, or implying that iPhone buyers are being tricked into going with the most famous smartphone, rather than the most innovative. App selection, for example, might be far more important than hardware, now that all smartphones are essentially identical touch-sensitive slabs. And iOS 8, which is only just rolling out now, could offer the kind of polished user experience that helped turn Apple into the giant that it is today. New features designed to improve one-handed operation, such as shoving icons closer to the bottom of the screen, could make big-phone believers out of current naysayers. There's build quality to consider as well, and screen durability, and a host of other qualities that can make you love a specific phone, rather than simply tolerate it.
What seems clear, however, is that the iPhone is not a clear winner, when it comes to hardware. There are better batteries to be had, better screens, and possibly better cameras. Or, at the very least, great cameras built into phones that aren't quite so expensive. Apple's advantage is largely about software. And considering the revenue generated by iTunes and the App Store, and the impact that both have had on entire industries, that's less of a backhanded compliment than it might seem.