The screen size debate

With the release of the iPhone 6 coming latter this fall the rumor mills have been turning out predictions for what we can expect to see in the new phone.  The most interesting, most talked about, rumor for the iPhone 6 has probably got to be the larger screen size.  The rumors are very strongly pointing to the idea that the iPhone 6 will have a 4.7" screen and they even suspect that there will be a 5.5" screen iPhone model as well.  The 4.7" screen would make the screen about 0.7" larger (along the diagonal) than the current iPhone 5/5s screen or about 18% larger.  The 5.5" screen would be 1.5" larger or about 38% larger.

 Digital mockup of rumored iPhone 6 with 4.7" and 5.5" screens compared to current iPhone 5s with 4" screen

Digital mockup of rumored iPhone 6 with 4.7" and 5.5" screens compared to current iPhone 5s with 4" screen

This is very troubling to me.  In fact, the only thing more troubling is the fact that so many people seem to be happy about these larger screens.

Here's the deal.  A phone needs to be able to be operated with one hand.  That's plain and simple.  What this means is that you should be able to reach the opposite corner of the phone, with your thumb, without straining too much.  For a long time it seemed like Apple understood this concept.  Steve Jobs had repeatedly stated that a 3.5 inch screen was the perfect size for a smartphone often slamming other phones with larger screens.  Even when Apple introduced the iPhone 5 with the larger 4 inch screen they still made a note of making sure that it could be operated with one hand.  But now it seems that they've caved to the pressure of the number war; not wanting to lose customers who only care about the larger number and not how that number actually effects the way you use your phone.

That's really the thing I don't under stand though.  Why do people want a phone they need two hands to use?  I understand that a larger screen can make certain things better, like looking at a picture or watching a movie, but if you really want to watch a movie do it on your television or computer monitor; something that's designed for that specific purpose.  I've never once thought to myself that the screen on my iPhone 5 is too small.  In fact, I occasionally find myself straining and adjusting the phone in my hand to reach the opposite corner of the screen.  I can not, for the life of me, figure out why people want a phone they need to hands to operate, or an extra large pocket to carry.  And don't even get me started on a 5.5" screen.

The short answer to the 5.5" screen is just put a freaking microphone in the iPad mini and call it a phone. If you really want a screen that size just get a freaking tablet.

 Rumored iPhone 6 physical mockup with 4.7" screen compared to Samsung Galaxy s5

Rumored iPhone 6 physical mockup with 4.7" screen compared to Samsung Galaxy s5

The only redeeming fact in all of this is that they are all just rumors.  Even though there are a lot of rumors, and you can find digital and physical mockups, and it seems like the only rumors about the iPhone 6 are about the larger screen, we are still almost three months away from actual announcement of the iPhone 6. These rumors could all prove to be untrue and we could see something completely different for the iPhone 6.

 

So to sum it all up, the only reason I would buy an iPhone6 with a 4.7" screen would be the fact that I wouldn't be able to buy another new phone with a smaller screen (and I still don't understand why people seem to have the need to carry around a phone that needs to be operated with two hands).  Further more, I don't understand why Apple is caving to the pressure of people thinking they need a larger screen.  Ten years from now we may look back and view this as a major turning point in the Post-Jobs era of Apple.   

 

Anyways, thanks for reading and if you have any comments feel free to leave them below.

 

-Matt.