Saturday, February 5, 2011

The case for the 5" iPod Play

Why is the iPod Touch screen at 3.5"? Why isn't it bigger? Well, the
iPod Touch is the the iPhone without a Phone, right? It was made to
expands the ecosystem of devices and lower the cost of the iPhone
components. So why then is the iPhone screen at 3.5" size? Very
simple: because as a mobile phone it needs to be usable with 1
thumb only. Apple has likely found out that the 3.5" size is the
largest hand held display that most people can "walk around" the
corners with their thumbs.

But the iPod Touch is not a phone. Actually, most people use it as
media computer to-go and play with it with both hands. The iPod Touch needs
a Wi-Fi to be fully usable and Wi-Fis are sort of stationary. And so,
if you will be staying on one place, you can just as well afford to
use both your hands. The iPhone on the other hand has a mobile
connection and you can often find people using it one hand (or no hands) while going
somewhere with their other hand free to do other stuff.

If the iPod Touch is mostly used with two hands, why is it
phone sized?
Why indeed?

So how much bigger can it get without being an iPad?

Well the iPad has one drawback feature to to it. It's not pocketable.
And by pockets I mean those available on your jeans. We can therefore draw
the line between the iPod and the iPad at about 6" as such a device
will barely not fit into our pockets.

How big could the iPod get and how small can the iPad be made for
the two to be still distinct devices? Well, Apple likes to make
logical sense of things. I think they might have planned those two
devices sizes all along. What if the big iPod Touch is half the size
of an iPad and iPad Mini is twice the size of an iPhone?
So physical sizes could be:
- iPhone is 3.5"
- iPod Play is 4.85"
- iPad Mini is 7"
- iPad is 9.7"

What's also interesting is what the resulting screen resolutions could be:
- iPhone at 960x640*
- 5" iPod Play at 1024x768*
- 7" iPad 2 at 960x640
- 10" iPad 2 at 1024x768
* Retina Display

Since the iPod/iPhone are used much closer to the face a retina screen
will make sense in the 5" iPod Play too. Since it uses the iPad
resolution developers will not need to make new graphic, they could
just use the iPad ones.

The main idea of the 5" iPod Play is to have graphical performance of
the iPad but be at portable as the iPod Touch

The main idea of the 7" iPad would be to have a much lighter and
a cheaper iPad for reading.

Still, I think 7" iPad 2 will be a compromise size just as the 3.5"
iPod Touch is. The iPod is now more in a need to redefine itself and
starts living its own life again outside of the shadow of it's other
two iOS brethren.

On a final note, the iPod brand has become confusing. There are now 4 totally different iPods. Apple needs to leave only 1 iPod, separate and rebrand the iOS devices on their own and retire the ones that had their run. After all the iPod touch already makes more than 50% of the iPod sales, by the next iTunes Sept event it will be likely be even more.

1 comment:

Mister Snitch! said...

Makes sense, including the added branding as the 'Play'. Well done.