2 Things I Want in the iPhone 5

by Ben Bajarin   |   October 3rd, 2011

 
I want to dream for one second about the only two things I would love to see in the iPhone 5. After that I want to add some bigger picture perspective.

A Bigger Screen
Studying Apple for as long as I have I know they make very intentional decisions with hardware. It is for that reason that they choose a 3.5 inch display for all their iPhones. In our talks with app developers it is the consistency in screen size that they appreciate in Apple’s ecosystem. Namely because they do not need to worry about variation in hardware or screen size when they create software.

That being said I would love a 4″ screen on my iPhone 5. I have used a number of 4″ screen devices and I think it is or is close to the perfect size for a smart phone.

I don’t believe adding half an inch to the screen size would have any significant impact on any of the existing iPhone apps, especially if developers have created universal apps.

Voice to Text Speech Recognition
The only reason this feature does not exist today in iOS is because the technology is not perfect. As Steve Jobs has famously repeated when they launch new groundbreaking features “it just works.”

The challenge with voice to text speech recognition is that it just works 70% of the time. In that 70% of accuracy it needs a nearly perfectly quiet environment. My guess is that Apple would want a higher accuracy rating as well as some new technology that doesn’t require near silence to work correctly.

These however are all innovations in voice to text Apple is capable of and hopefully working on. They do have some minimal voice command technology in current iOS software but I’d love to see full voice to text supported.

The Bigger Picture
Now if you are paying attention to the world of smart phones you will know that both of those features I hope for are available in the Android ecosystem of hardware. This leads to my bigger picture point that hardware is not the only buying decision going on in the minds of consumers. We live in a world where the experience with the software is beginning to play a larger role in the decision-making process.

Most consumers do not shop on specs.

The hardware is important but we live in a software world. Regardless of what Apple releases hardware wise tomorrow I will go out on a limb now and guarantee it will be the sexiest smart phone in existence. This is because Apple’s hardware design passion is second to none. This is why even if my two feature requests don’t come to the iPhone 5, I will not be disappointed.

However as the saying goes within Apple “those who serious about software should also be serious about hardware.” As I will point out in a column later this week Apple is really a software company.

Putting this all in perspective the user experience, the apps, the Apple ecosystem are all reasons why I consciously choose Apple products. Even though there are devices on the market with features that I do desire, I am willing to make the trade-off. Primarily because those few features do not outweigh all the other areas where the Apple experience is superior – in my opinion.

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Ben Bajarin

Ben Bajarin is a Principal Analyst at Creative Strategies, Inc - An industry analysis, market intelligence and research firm located in Silicon Valley. His primary focus is consumer technology and market trend research. He is a husband, father, gadget enthusiast, trend spotter, early adopter and hobby farmer. Full Bio
  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Patrick-H-Moorhead/1436045996 Patrick H Moorhead

    If they do enhance voice control, I expect the following:
    1/ Fix current voice command: Holding the start button for seconds doesn’t cut it. Waiting two to three seconds for it to do something doesn’t cut it either. It must be immediate. Too hard and the brain amplifies waiting time.
    2/ Basic speech-to-text: For texts, Tweets, Facebook updates, notes.
    3/ Intelligent Assistant: Siri that’s more intuitive and integrated.

  • Rich

    “The Apple experience is superior.” Well said.