Why The 4.6-Inch iPhone Won't Happen

No — stop it. Close that tab. Stop reading that. The Apple rumour de jour — a 4.6-inch iPhone 5 — is the same reheated broth some filthy cook serves yearly. It wasn't true last year, or the year before. Here's why it's still BS.

Reuters, usually a staid, reliable entity when it comes to not spreading gleeful crap rumours, dove headfirst into this one:

Apple has decided on the bigger 4.6-inch display for its next iPhone and started placing orders to its suppliers, the Maeil Business Newspaper said, quoting an unnamed industry source.

Oh, well, in that case! But beyond the complete baselessness of the report, there are good reasons why this thing rumour is hot, sweaty air, regardless of source.

The Terrifying Ghost of Steve Jobs

Jobs decided the iPhone would be 3.5 inches six years ago. Every single iPhone has been 3.5 inches. Every single iPod Touch has been 3.5 inches. Apple, even under the competent Captain Cook, would make customers and investors alike nervous once they started to stray from the Jobsian Plan for The Universe.

3.5 Ain't Broke

As it exists now, the iPhone (2G, 3G, 3GS, 4, 4S) fits perfectly in your hand, whether you've got bigger than usual mitts or baby hands. The entire screen and home button can be struck by your thumb alone. It's just big enough for movies, perfect as a camera rangefinder and perfectly comfortable for casual reading. It'll also fit just fine in your pants, no matter how skinny. There's just something optimal about 3.5 inches. We know it, and Apple knows it. For a company with such monastic dedication to consistency, this isn't a factor the company is likely to start screwing with — especially with an inch-plus increase. So what's Apple's incentive? Why alter a form that sells millions upon millions every single year?

The Source and Timing Are Suspect

To say the least. Let's reiterate: this rumour has come out of a Korean newspaper with no Apple track record to speak of, citing an "unnamed industry source" about a "second quarter" launch that makes no sense. Apple is going to release a new iPhone 7-9 months after the last one? Nuh uh.

Why Join the Size Race?

As our pals at FWD pointed out, as phone manufacturers come out with ever-expanding displays, we're approaching a Phone/Penis Singularity. Just like computers used to slap each other back and forth over speed, phones now race to out-big each other, but bigger has by no means proven to always be better. Conceding anything close to this would put Apple in a pissing contest, rather a city on a hill.

Photo: Techblock



    I call bullshit. No, Apple will never make a 4.6 inch iPhone but you're deluding yourself if you think they'll stick with 3.5' till the end of time. After moving from the iPhone 4 to the Galaxy Nexus, 3.5 just feels extremely cramped. Less information density, your thumb obscures a larger % of the screen, videos and full-screen browsing aren't as enjoyable.

    Additionally, this "3.5 is perfect" canard is complete bullshit. Ever noticed how gloves come in different sizes? People have different sized hands. I'm only 'medium' but the iPhone already feels stifling, my friend who has gigantic monkey paws can barely browse on an iPhone without hitting something he shouldn't. MG Siegler's laughable line about how the iPhone perfectly fits his hands is just delusion. The day Apple releases the inevitable 4' iPhone, I bet his fingers will magically grow that day, his and Jesus Diaz/Sam Biddle's.

    No, the Word of Jobs isn't set in stone. After swearing off Intel chips and USB standard, both are now in Macs. After saying users will need to 'file their fingers' to use anything less than a 10 inch screen, Jobs still sold the iPhone.

    well, my 2 cents is, bigger screens make for better viewing, however, i'd like to be able to reach the whole screen with my thumb and holding a massive screen up to my face to talk looks and feels stupid.

    i am a owner of a iphone 4s and agree with most android users. the screen is way to small. and to do with being comfortable to hold that is crock, a 4" samsung galaxy s is easier to hold. but overall bigger screen equals easier to see and better specs like me new phone which i love Htc One X is brilliant Recommended to all

Join the discussion!

Trending Stories Right Now