iPhone 5 May Not Get a Bigger Screen: 10 Reasons Why

NEWS ANALYSIS: Apple is reportedly nearing a decision to bring a larger display to the iPhone 5. As much as iPhone fans might welcome a larger screen, there’s still several reasons why Apple might decide against it.

Over the last several years, if one polled current and prospective iPhone owners about the features they most desired in the next iteration of the smartphone, many would have said a bigger screen. After all, for years, iPhone owners have watched Android vendors offer up devices that come with larger screens. And time and again, Apple has launched new iPhones with the same, 3.5-inch display.

Now, though, rumors suggest Apple will be launching a 4-inch screen in the iPhone 5. In fact, there have been several chassis leaks, seeming to show an iPhone prototype boasting a taller screen that comes with the same width as its predecessors. That extends the number of pixels on-screen, but still offers the width advantages found in Apple€™s current handset.

But just because the rumor mill says Apple will launch an iPhone with a larger display and most consumers want it to happen, it doesn€™t mean it definitely will. In fact, there are several reasons Apple might decide to stick with the same, 3.5-inch screen it has always offered.

Here€™s why Apple may release the next iPhone with the same old 3.5-inch screen.

1. It has stuck with 3.5 inches

This isn€™t the first time that speculation has suggested Apple will launch an iPhone with a larger screen. Each time that has happened the company has kept the 3.5-inch display. When determining Apple€™s next move, it€™s always a good idea to look back at history. Apple is nothing if not consistent about its smartphone design. If recent history is any guide, the future doesn€™t look so bright for those hoping for a larger screen.

2. An iPad Mini looms

The issue with launching an iPhone with a larger screen is that it might come too close to the reported iPad Mini that€™s launching. Apple likes drawing clear lines between product launches. By launching a smaller iPad, as well as a larger iPhone, it€™s starting to bring them closer together. Granted, tablets and smartphones are different products, but at what point do they become too similar for their own good?

3. Four inches is still smaller

Apple€™s iPhone 4S comes with a 3.5-inch screen, making it, in some cases, a full inch smaller than its chief competitors. But what good will the rumored 4-inch screen do? After all, the screen will still be smaller than many competing handsets and those vendors will still hold the high ground. Why invest in a larger display just to end up at the same point?

4. The additional cost

If Apple likes anything, it€™s maintaining strong margins. By keeping the same display in the iPhone 5, it can likely improve margins a bit more. Bringing on a 4-inch screen, however, will only increase costs. Apple is a cost-conscious company. All those who believe it will offer up a 4-inch screen must remember that.

Don Reisinger

Don Reisinger

Don Reisinger is a longtime freelance contributor to several technology and business publications. Over his career, Don has written about everything from geek-friendly gadgetry to issues of privacy...