When Do Smartphone Screens Become Too Big?

Apr 10, 2013
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When Do Smartphone Screens Become Too Big?

I have a problem. I own a smartphone – an iPhone 5 – that comes with a nicely sized, 4-inch screen. When I surf to Web sites, I’m able to see whatever I want. When I go to the iTunes Store and buy a movie or two, I can enjoy them without any trouble whatsoever. For me, the 4-inch screen is an ideal size.

Then again, I thought the same with my former iPhone, which came with a smaller 3.5-inch display. I thought for sure that I wouldn’t need a larger screen. But when I got my hands on the bigger display, I decided otherwise.

Now, though, I’m looking at new devices from companies like LG and Samsung, like the Galaxy S 4, that come with screen sizes that hit 5 inches, and I can’t help but wonder why anyone would need a device featuring a screen size that large. Let’s face it – there comes a point when screen sizes become too big and unwieldy. And I wonder if a 5-inch display from Samsung is one such device.

Of course, those who love Android will have a much different opinion on the matter. They believe that Apple is delivering products that only come with 4-inch screens is absolutely ridiculous. It’s too small a screen, the critics say, and it’s the kind of limitation that Apple places on products that make them want an Android handset.

I can understand both points. Apple ostensibly believes that a 4-inch tablet makes sense for customers. Samsung and others, however, see that as one of the issues with Apple’s products, and believe that customers want the biggest display they can get. While I agree that there are literally millions of people around the globe that do want the larger screens, at what point do they become too big?

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[aquote]There's a point where a large screen becomes ridiculous[/aquote]

The way I see it, we’ve pushed the envelope to a point where there might not be much more room for larger screens. Most people today put their devices into their pockets or in small places in their purses. They don’t have the room, necessarily, to keep putting larger and larger products into those places. It comes to a point when a device has such a large screen that using it becomes ridiculous. And there comes a point when companies have to realize that and find other ways to attract us. It’s not easy, for sure, but it’s absolutely necessary.

So, I think we should examine whether smartphone screen sizes are getting too big. As I said earlier, I’ll be the first to admit that I like a nice, big screen. But after 5 inches, I don’t think it makes sense for companies to deliver products that deliver anything bigger. And I’m not so sure that consumers will respond favorably to such a move.

So, before you buy that 5-inch-screen-equipped screen, think twice. Will it be too big? Will it be just right? Everyone is different. But not acknowledging the possibility of screen sizes being too big for their own good is a mistake.


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