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iPhone 5 will have a 3.99-inch (diagonal) screen. Give or take.
Finally. A rumor you can believe in.
Well before the disappointing yet wildly successful iPhone 4S, the technoglitterati have been predicting or demanding a big-screen iPhone. How big, you ask. Well. Big.
The problem with a bigger screen is that iOS applications would have to be redone. Now comes a suggestion, beautiful in its simplicity, which suggests how Apple could increase screen size without forcing developers to rework apps: change the aspect ratio of the iPhone's screen.
In a post at the Verge, with some intriguing illustrations, modilwar develops an idea first posed by a caller to one of the Verge's online chats, one Timothy Collins.
Currently, all iPhones have had a 3.5 inch display with 3:2 aspect ratio, with iPhone 4 and 4S having the same Retina Display resolution of 960 x 640 pixels.
If Apple kept that resolution but increased the diagonal screen size to 4.0 inches, it "significantly reduce the ppi to 288" which as modilwar notes is "well below the 300 mark Apple as touted as retina [display] quality."
But. ... If Apple changes the aspect ratio to 9:5, you could create a screen that would retain the same dimensions and pixels on the shorter side - 1.94 inches, 640 pixels - but the longer side would get...longer: to a smidgen over 3.99 inches, and 1,152 pixels. "I'm sure Apple PR could round this to 4," modilwar writes.
The result: a 20% increase in the number of pixels compared to iPhone 4 and 4S. That would add another row of app icons on the homescreen, and as the mockups show, significantly increase space for everything from app screens to typing messages. It might also mean that the next iPhone's external dimensions could remain the same.
iPhone 5 will have a unibody design, just like the MacBook
Apple will pass on glass for the next iPhone and go with a body formed of the same material used in beer cans.
A stock market analyst, traipsing around Taiwan and China talking to component suppliers predicts the next iPhone will have an aluminum unibody design, just like Apple's MacBooks. So wondrous will unibody be, that "This new, sleek look will be the most important reason that consumers decide to upgrade," gushed Brian J. White, the traipsing analyst, who works for Topeka Capital Markets. His speculation was in a "report to investors" issued this week, and picked up by various tech news sites, including AppleInsider.
AppleInsider's post was picked up by still others, such as Simon Thomas, at 3G.co.uk, who cited the Website as a "reputable source" for the unibody rumor, even though all AppleInsider did was parrot White's comments.
But in any case, the unibody would demolish one of the "major criticisms" of the iPhone 4S, says Thomas. "One of the major criticisms aimed at Apple's iPhone 4S is that it looks identical to the previous model, which meant it was hard for people to realize [sic] you'd splashed out on a new iPhone."
Rollup thought that, too. What is the point of buying a new smartphone if the people you want to impress can't even tell it's new?