Time to upgrade — Your iPhone 6 Plus and iPad mini 4 are now obsolete and vintage, respectively

iPhones lined up
(Image credit: Future)

If you're still rocking an iPhone 6 Plus or an iPad mini 4, now is definitely the time to start considering upgrading to something a little newer after Apple added them to its list of really old devices.

Apple regularly adds older iPhones, iPads, and Macs to its list of vintage and obsolete products and now it's the turn of the iPhone 6 Plus and iPad mini 4 and while owners of those devices can of course continue to use them, there are some things to note.

For starters, the iPhone 6 Plus is now on the obsolete list which means that Apple Stores and Apple's authorized repair centers no longer offer repairs or hardware services for that particular iPhone. Apple adds devices to the list seven years after the company last offered them for sale.

In the case of the fourth-gen iPad, the miniature tablet has been added to the vintage list which means that it's more than five years since the company stopped selling it. As a result, Apple Stores and repair centers can continue to offer repairs for a further two years but there is no guarantee that parts will remain available. MacRumors was the first to report the new additions.

It's time

Given the age of these devices, it's definitely time to consider upgrading.

The iPhone 6 Plus was announced alongside the iPhone 6 in September 2014 with the larger screen being a key differentiator. It was the largest display ever offered on an iPhone but the iPhone 6 Plus was discontinued in 2016. Apple stopped supporting the device when iOS 13 arrived in 2019.

In terms of specifications, the iPhone 6 Plus had a 5.5-inch Retina display and an Apple A18 chip inside. 16GB, 64GB, and 128GB options were available while the main camera was an 8-megapixel affair with support for Auto HDR and more.  The front-facing FaceTime camera had a 1.2-megapixel sensor with Face detection and other camera-related features. The iPhone 6 Plus of course had Touch ID for biometric authentication and Apple Pay. Buyers could pick from Silver, Gold, and Space Gray color options when making their purchase.

The iPad mini 4 features a 7.9-inch Retina display and was again powered by the A8 chip. It came in 16GB, 32GB, 64GB, and 128GB storage options and used 8-megapixel (rear) and 1.2-megapixel (FaceTIme) cameras. Buyers could choose between Silver, Gold, and Space Gray.

This news comes as we get ever closer to the arrival of the iPhone 16 and iPhone 16 Pro models ten years after the iPhone 6 Plus debuted. The new models are of course huge upgrades over the old ones, but any newer non-Touch ID iPhone will be a big improvement over the iPhone 6 Plus for anyone ready to upgrade. Better and bigger displays, improved cameras, and of course the removal of the Home button and the addition of Face ID are just some benefits from upgrading to a newer iPhone.

Apple is expected to unveil the new iPhone 16 and iPhone 16 Pro models this fall, likely in September alongside the release of the Apple AI-laden iOS 18 and other software updates.

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Oliver Haslam
Contributor

Oliver Haslam has written about Apple and the wider technology business for more than a decade with bylines on How-To Geek, PC Mag, iDownloadBlog, and many more. He has also been published in print for Macworld, including cover stories. At iMore, Oliver is involved in daily news coverage and, not being short of opinions, has been known to 'explain' those thoughts in more detail, too.

Having grown up using PCs and spending far too much money on graphics card and flashy RAM, Oliver switched to the Mac with a G5 iMac and hasn't looked back. Since then he's seen the growth of the smartphone world, backed by iPhone, and new product categories come and go. Current expertise includes iOS, macOS, streaming services, and pretty much anything that has a battery or plugs into a wall. Oliver also covers mobile gaming for iMore, with Apple Arcade a particular focus. He's been gaming since the Atari 2600 days and still struggles to comprehend the fact he can play console quality titles on his pocket computer.