Forum Spotlight: Thoughts on 4″ Displays

The largest change (no pun intended) to Apple’s handheld iOS devices this year was the increase in screen size from 3.5″ to 4″. This change allows for more vertical content to be displayed at once, and was welcomed by many. As with most changes to resolution, app developers have to update their programs in order to properly utilize the extra space.

Along with the larger screen, the iPhone 5 and latest iPod touch are also in the 16:9 aspect ratio. While this doesn’t affect most apps or programs beyond making more content available on-screen at one time, it does make movies more pleasant to watch. Most recent films are produced in the widescreen, 16:9 aspect ratio, and therefore are able to use the whole screen on the latest iDevices.

There are some small downsides, as forum member Cloudy notes. He feels that, while the larger screen is very nice, it could be improved if the display was ever so slightly wider:

I can’t help but get the feeling that it should have been somewhat widened from the previous version. Even if just slight, keeping the proportions of 16:9, say the screen was 2 millimetres larger on all sides, so that it actually felt bigger.

Others feel similar, though the  majority seem to enjoy the larger display. While a 4″ iPhone is still dwarfed by most high-end smartphones, Apple seems to have found a nice balance between obscenely large, and pocketable. If Android and Windows Phone require larger screens, iOS has proven to work just fine on a smaller display.

What are your thoughts on the larger screen? Did Apple finally listen to its customers, or is it simply a marketing gimmick to make the iPhone 5 seem like a better product than it is?

Post a response / What do you think?
2 responses to Forum Spotlight: Thoughts on 4″ Displays and 17 more on the forums.
  1. I’ve waited for years for the screen to get bigger! After all that waiting, all I get is an extra row of icons? Well, once a year I trial Android, and every year I am reminded why I hate it…the jerky, glitchy response….until this year. I now own a Note 2, which outshines the iPhone in nearly every noticeable way with the exception of the app selection. That said, the selection is getting better, and I am finding the software I need to do what I need to do. To me, apple’s screen size increase was like a memory upgrade from 128 gigs to 138 gigs. Switching to the Note 2 gave me all the screen I can handle, and is allowing me to more deeply explore Android….

  2. From my viewpoint, Apple is producing a product that is consistent from one version to the next. Sticking with the product is a no-brainer. It may sound trite but the things “just work”. I watch the Android users around me crowing about how much “better” their phones are but they keep trading, tinkering and replacing them with something “better”. Meanwhile the iPhone users are getting long life, reliable and consistent performance and wind up, as a result, being loyal to the brand. I’m not talking about “fanboy” loyalty, just loyalty due to consistent quality and performance.

    I’m a Microsoft developer, will always be with the Windows platform for desktop and web development. As for my portable devices, however, the Apple ones have proven themselves with me and those I know that use them. The 4″ screen is fine (and so is the 3.5″ for that matter).

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