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Cellphones Displays

Smartphone Screen Real Estate: How Big Is Big Enough? 320

MojoKid writes "Aside from the terrible nickname (it sounds like a term for the spoiled offspring of fabulous people), phablets are somewhat controversial because they seem to be the epitome of inflated phone sizes. A lot of people wanted bigger, and this is 'bigger' to the extreme. A larger screen on a smartphone is attractive for obvious reasons, but surely there's a limit. So how big is too big? If you're not into parsing out the particulars of form factors and use cases, here's a really easy way to figure out if your phone or phablet is too big: Can you hold the device in one hand and 1) unlock the phone, 2) type out a text message with your thumb, and 3) adjust the volume with the rocker without using your other hand? If not, you might need a smaller phone."
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Smartphone Screen Real Estate: How Big Is Big Enough?

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  • I have a Galaxy Note (Score:5, Interesting)

    by maroberts ( 15852 ) on Thursday February 28, 2013 @06:14AM (#43032503) Homepage Journal

    ..and it fits perfectly in my breast shirt pocket. I don't put phones in trouser/pants pockets ever since I broke a screen of one by doing so.

    I love the Note as its large display makes a great GPS device when in its car holder.
    The main thing I want in a smartphone now is enormous battery life as well as the features. I do miss the days when you could charge your phone once a week, but not so much I'm willing to go back to having a basic phone.

  • by gigaherz ( 2653757 ) on Thursday February 28, 2013 @06:20AM (#43032529)
    I hope you place it with the screen towards you, at least. I don't know where they place the antennas nowadays, but I wouldn't want a device emitting microwaves onto my lungs/heart... nor my genitals, either.
  • What?? (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Cenan ( 1892902 ) on Thursday February 28, 2013 @06:24AM (#43032543)

    Can you hold the device in one hand and 1) unlock the phone, 2) type out a text message with your thumb, and 3) adjust the volume with the rocker without using your other hand? If not, you might need a smaller phone.

    None of the above points are arguments for/against screens of any size. All of those "problems" can be solved without even thinking about the size of the screen on a device.

    1) unlocking schemes for phones can take on any number of different forms, not all requiring you to swipe from edge to edge to unlock.

    2) usability of the virtual keyboard has nothing to do with screen size, but a matter of placing it in the correct location on the screen

    3) adjusting the volume on a phone has nothing to do with screen size, and everything to do with placement of the rocker button.

  • by Torp ( 199297 ) on Thursday February 28, 2013 @06:50AM (#43032629)

    But the iPhone 4 is just the right size for me. The 5 feels already too long. I'm worried that if Apple jumps on the 'my phone is bigger than your phone' bandwagon I'll be left with no replacement, as all the Android small phones are el cheapo versions with slow hardware.
    Btw, I'm male, and I don't have particularly small hands. I can reach around a 4-4.3" screen with one hand, I just don't want one.

  • by TigerPlish ( 174064 ) on Thursday February 28, 2013 @06:51AM (#43032637)

    My preference is still the iphone up through version 4. After that it gets bothersome to carry and use. I'm still reluctant to get a 5 with it's 1/2" longer screen. The old dimensions were just about perfect.

    I have a company-issued Galaxy SII. It sits unused on my kitchen counter, calls forwarded to my iphone. I can't stand the SII's size -- and it's really not that much larger than an old iphone - maybe 1/2" all around. I think it's excessively large. I used it almost exclusively for a month and gave up on it. This time any "cool" value of being "different" (android vs. ios, anyone else vs. apple) was destroyed by the way the phone feels in my hand and pocket. Sorry. It just doesn't work for me, and I honestly feel it's the extra size.

    It's not like I have tiny hands or anything -- and I'm sure everyone's different -- but I don't want a big phone. I'm sure there are others who think the same thing.

    As for the satnav argument presented before, meh and double meh. Why should I put up with the compromises of even a large phone when I have a perfectly good top-shelf TomTom with humongous screen and a speaker that makes itself extremely intelligible at 65% volume even with the music going fairly loudly? That's something neither of my phones can do. For every job, a proper tool, yes?

  • by rikkards ( 98006 ) on Thursday February 28, 2013 @07:00AM (#43032671) Journal

    I think the question they are answering is:
    Would you have a phone if your tablet was capable of making and receiving phone calls

  • Re:What?? (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Nerdfest ( 867930 ) on Thursday February 28, 2013 @07:22AM (#43032765)

    That may be part of the problem. People using iPhones aren't used to the idea that you can change basic features like lockscreens, keyboards, and have a variety of options for the physical layout of buttons, etc. The iPhone (and any other phone) involves a series of design choices and compromises and isn't going to be perfect for everybody. This is one of the big advantages of having multiple hardware providers and a more open OS. If it's not perfect for you, try something else.

  • by DiSKiLLeR ( 17651 ) on Thursday February 28, 2013 @08:03AM (#43032937) Homepage Journal

    3 hours? Seriously? My Galaxy Note N7000 lasts 4 days - YES 4 DAYS - of a single charge.

    As long as you're not looking at your screen to check your facebook stream or w/e every 2 minutes your phone can acutally last a while.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday February 28, 2013 @08:59AM (#43033175)

    I'm young and normal/cool/popular/whatever enough to use my phone as the marketing machine would probably want, and I have to tell you that people under 25 don't generally ever use the phone as a phone, and when they do it's either (a) for just a few seconds, or (b) on speaker phone. So as long as it fits in your pocket (although a lot of my friends just carry them in their bags, but then this is in college and I guess older people don't like messenger bags) without making you look like an asshole, who cares how big it is? Holding it in one hand to speak on it almost never comes up. Now one-handed texting/tweeting/etc is a different story, but people use their tabs to post to facebook and twitter during class all the time so the one- or two-handedness must not really be that important

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