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What is the largest smartphone screen size?

The race for the biggest smartphone is over  February 18, 2018 – 10:53 am

Samsung's latest flagship phones have the same-size screens as last year's. Have we reached the optimal smartphone size at last?BARCELONA — After years and years of smartphone manufacturers racing to fit a larger screen into a ever-shrinking case, we finally see the light at the end of the tunnel, and it's about 5 to 5.5 inches wide.

And it happened just as Apple gave in and joined the fray.

On Sunday, Samsung showed off not one, but two flagship smartphones — the Galaxy S6 and the Galaxy S6 Edge — and they both have a 5.1-inch screen. HTC's One M9, launched on the same day, has a 5-inch screen.

The screen size on both devices is exactly the same as on their predecessors, the Galaxy S5 and the One M8, respectively — and it's the first time Samsung has gone this route.

The original Samsung Galaxy S had a 4-inch screen. The S II's screen was stretched to 4.3 inches, and the S III had an enormous (for its time) 4.8-inch screen. After that, Samsung slowed down: The Galaxy S4's screen was 5 inches big, the Galaxy S5's screen grew by just 0.1 inch and the S6 and the S6 Edge did not get bigger at all.

As far as HTC goes, the original One had a 4.7-inch screen, while both of its successors — the One M8 and the One M9 — each have a 5-inch screen.

I'm not surprised. The iPhone 6 Plus, which came as an answer to the competition's 5-inch-plus flagships, is too big for many people. I have it and I'm happy with it, but it took some time to get used to the enormous, 5.5-inch screen. Could I get used to an even bigger phone? Yes, probably, but there's really no point — the usability trade-offs overshadow the possible benefits, except for those of us with giant hands.

When Apple designed the iPhone 6 Plus, the company's engineers probably decided on this screen size because it towers over most competitors, but it's right there at the brink of becoming too big. Other manufacturers — such as LG and Alcatel — followed suit, launching flagships with 5.5-inch screens.

Of course, it's quite possible — and probable — that we'll see even bigger smartphones in the future. But they won't be better, and they won't be flagships. Already, Google's Nexus 6 has an enormous screen — 6 inches — and to Mashable's Pete Pachal, who's a huge guy, it was awkwardly large. With this device, Google didn't pave the way for the future; instead, it gave us a real-life example of a phone that's simply too damn big.

It happened before — remember those laptops with 20-inch screens? But people soon realized those things are nearly impossible to carry around, and far smaller, ultrathin portables became the new craze. Since 2012, Apple hasn't even offered a 17-inch laptop anymore.

Apple doesn't like to change screen sizes too often, especially if not forced by the competition. I'm betting the next iteration of iPhone 6 Plus will stay the same size. And now that the biggest Android manufacturer out there, Samsung, has given up on increasing the screens on its flagship devices, the race is finally over. I'm looking forward to my better, normal-sized future phone.


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