Much of the recent speculation regarding the next version of the iPhone has spoken about a possible increase in the handsets screen size. While many fans of the iPhone have long wished for a larger display nothing will be known until Apple make an official announcement about the device. There has been some talk that the new iPhone 5 will feature a 4-inch screen size, but some feel this will never happen.
According to a report on TNW the chances of having a 4-inch display on an iPhone are slim as it would mean every application developed for the current models would become obsolete, which would mean over 500,000 apps needing to be rebuilt from the ground up for them to work on a larger screen.
Also increasing the size creates the problem of maintaining Apple’s Retina level resolution, and it is being suggested that Apple would increase the length of the iPhone instead of the overall size of it. This would then allow a number of applications to just increase the view area between the top status bar and the bottom tab bar.
This solution does run into difficulty regarding applications that rely heavily on custom graphics across their interfaces, instead of list views or stock Apple components. This will mean they have to be rebuilt from the ground up, which will affect many of the App Store quality apps available.
Away from applications the current iPhone is the size it is after intensive Apple testing, and once placed in your hand its perfect size for you to reach the top corner of the handsets screen with your thumb when being used one handed. If the iPhone screen size was to get bigger and be widescreen it would make it a lot harder to reach all of the icons around the edge.
So for users that don’t have larger than average hands it would take more effort to reach all of the screen one handed, and over a day’s use would cause some hand fatigue. When trying out other handsets such as the Samsung Galaxy S2 and the Droid Bionic it was felt the screen too big to comfortably use the whole screen, which gets even worse for those with smaller hands.
If Apple were to change the aspect ratio to 9:5 it would allow the length to be increased to 3.49-inches, but allow the width to stay the same, and would change the comfortable shape of the screen into something that is closer to being widescreen, but Apple focuses on the iPhone camera being the only one users need and changing the aspect ratio would make viewing standard images a far worse experience let alone printing them.
It seems the iPhones 3.5-inch screen size is almost perfect for when using with one hand, but a 4-inch screen could work as long as it’s no longer. Having a 4-inch screen on the iPhone 5 would be a welcome jump in size, but away from usability it’s something many iPhone fans want to see. Users of the various larger sized Android handsets seem to get along fine. Do you think we will see a larger screen on the next iPhone?