BIG­GER IS BET­TER?

SMART­PHONE DIS­PLAY SIZES RANGE FROM 2.8 INCHES TO 5.3 INCHES. ARE THERE AD­VAN­TAGES TO THE DIS­PLAY BE­ING SMALLER RATHER THAN BIG­GER?

Gadgets and Gizmos (India) - - MOBILES - TEXT BY NIDHI SIN­GAL & PHO­TOGRAPHS BY RA­JWANT RAWAT

Gone is the era when mini spelt ‘cov­eted’ in the mo­bile hand­sets mar­ket. Re­mem­ber that perky ad about a wo­man talk­ing into a tiny phone and mis­lead­ing a man into be­liev­ing she was giv­ing him the come-hither sig­nal? To­day’s phone world is all about big, big­ger, big­gest.

And yet, this beg­gars a ques­tion: Is big­ger bet­ter?

It all started when Ap­ple first in­tro­duced THE 3.5-inch screen and took the mar­ket by storm. All phone­mak­ers fol­lowed the trend. To­day, we have phones which have much larger dis­plays than the Ap­ple iphone—the Sam­sung Galaxy S2 and HTC Sen­sa­tion have 4.3-inch dis­plays, the Acer S300 has an 4.8-inch one, while the Galaxy Note will boast a 5.3-inch screen. This has led to the avail­abil­ity of a large range in dis­play sizes, from 2.8 inches to 5.3 inches and every­thing in be­tween. All along Ap­ple has kept to a 3.5-inch screen. Does the com­pany feel that in­creas­ing the dis­play size in­volves di­min­ish­ing sat­is­fac­tion for the user? Let’s check. Re­mem­ber when a 2.8-inch dis­play in a Win­dows Mo­bile phone used to look huge? That was the time when we were ec­static about re­sis­tive touch tech­nol­ogy (which ac­cepted touch in­put us­ing a pointed tip, be it sty­lus, pen nib or a finger nail). Per­haps dis­play size wasn’t such a fac­tor then. To­day, ca­pac­i­tive touch tech­nol­ogy in most touch phones has al­lowed the hu­man finger to re­place the sty­lus. It has also meant that the ma­jor­ity of touch phones come with­out a phys­i­cal key­pad. In such a sce­nario, the touch dis­play needs to be big enough for hu­man fin­gers to move around, type, nav­i­gate and even pinch to zoom.

Although, the finger ex­pe­ri­ence isn’t hor­ri­fy­ing on a 2.8-inch or 3-inch dis­play, it is not the smoothest ei­ther. A user might feel com­fort­able brows­ing the menu but typ­ing on the cramped on­screen QWERTY key­pad isn’t too pleas­ant. One might con­sider phones with a 3.5-inch dis­play more com­fort­able to oper­ate on, but those with even big­ger dis­plays are the ones that tax your pa­tience the least.

But also con­sider the flip­side to this. It is not a com­fort­ing thought to be sad­dled with a big phone that doesn’t fit into pock­ets and is fairly dif­fi­cult to hold up to the ears for con­ver­sa­tions.

Tip: We have checked the phones sport­ing 4.3-inch dis­play and these are easy to get used to. The 4.8 and 5.3 inch­ers are yet to come to the In­dian mar­ket. The Dell Streak with its 5inch screen was an awk­ward de­vice

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