Larger screen. Smaller screen. Get them both. Pay the green.

Summary:Is the new iPhone 5's larger screen worth the money? How about that iPad mini? How many different gadget do you need before you say, "Enough?" One size should surely fit most.

thing1and2
Sorry, iThing 1, your screen is too Small/Large.

As you might have realized by now, my love for all things Apple has waned. With the recent postings of, " No iOS 6 for my original iPad? Now, I'm an Angry Bird " and " Open source hardware answers the problem of mobile device obsolescence ," I think most of you have noticed. If you haven't, please go back and notice. Since Apple decided not to support my iPad 1 with anymore iOS updates, I'm not sure I want to toss any money their way for future projects of folly, namely the larger-screened iPhone 5 and the smaller-screened iPad mini. Who knows how long that iPad mini will find favor with the ever-growing tech behemoth? I'm not taking the risk.

It's amazing* to me that Apple would continue to increase the size of its phone screen and decrease the size of its iPad screen. Where will the two eventually converge? Is there an ultimate size for a personal communications device?

Yes, there is.

The one you can afford.

Notice there that I said, "one" you can afford. Not two or three or six.

However, if you're a real Apple fan, you have an iPad 1, 2 or 3 (maybe all three), an iPhone 4, 4S or 5 (maybe all three), a Macbook Air or Macbook Pro (both?) and you're anxiously anticipating the iPad mini with its smaller screen.

A smaller screen for the iPad. A larger screen for the iPhone. More money for Apple. Less money for you. More gadgets that could have the life expectancy of a hamster.

Where does it end?

In five years, will there be some single, ultimate gadget that makes phone calls, sends texts, has a full-sized touch keyboard, connects to your corporate office, plays video games, automates your lights, monitors your TV program choices, plays movies, babysits your kids, plays music, acts as your personal assistant, edits your films, takes your pictures and fits in your pocket?

Of course not. People want variety at any cost.

I think sometimes that Henry Ford had the right idea--you could have the Model T in any color you wanted as long as you wanted black.

How many laundry detergent options does one need to ponder? Do I need a small box of detergent for a small load and a bigger box for a heavy load of sheets and jeans? A different one still for colors and another for whites? And, how many different choices of this gadget or that technology do you  really and truly need in your life?

How big does my phone screen need to be? How small does my tablet screen need to be?

But, it's not just Apple giving us choices. You have a gaggle of Android-based gadgetry to drool over. Android devices have their advantages, cool Apps and various shapes and sizes from which to choose. And, now we have a third major choice with new and improved Windows phones and tablets.

Choices are good. Sometimes. Competition is good. Sometimes.

But, what about the consumer? Are there too many choices and options?

You, me and every other person on the face of the planet has too many choices and they're all fantastic. Or are they?

How does one choose?

Do I need a smaller screen? Do I need a larger screen?

On the one hand, Apple thinks that I need a larger phone screen but a much smaller iPad screen.

I'm confused. Are you?

Can I afford all this confusion and choice? Can you?

Maybe I've become a Utilitarian. Maybe I'm tired of being over-marketed to. Maybe I'm tired of someone always trying to entice my money from me with bling that I don't really need but want so bad that I can't stand it.

So, my phone needs a larger screen and my iPad needs a smaller one. Fine. There are choices, other than Apple, for both of those attributes.

I was actually thinking just the opposite for those particular devices. I want a larger tablet screen--8.5 x 11 would be perfect. And, I want a tiny phone--a credit card-sized one, please. I don't have any place to carry a larger phone plus a protective case that keeps it pristine for the next 1.5 to 2 years of full vendor support. I don't carry a "murse." Where will I carry the larger phone?

With all these gadgets that I must have, I'm going to look like a Mall Cop with a utility belt full of things that not only I don't need but make me look even more dorky than I do already.

Sometimes I feel like I'm one of those hairy, genderless characters in an Apple-conceived, gadget-oriented Dr. Seuss story.

Big iThing. Little iThing.
Buy that iThing.
Buy this iThing.
iThing. iThing. iThing. iThing.
Get the iBling for that iThing.
Buy some more iBling for that iThing.
Every iThing calls for another iThing.
iThing. iThing. iThing. iThing.
Buy a iThing to put on that iThing.
You need more iBling.
Buy. Buy. Buy. Buy this new iThing.
We don't support that old iThing.
You need the new bigger, smaller iThing.
iThing. iThing. iThing. iThing.

It's enough to make me want to fling that old iThing back at the maker of the iThing. I'm on iThing overload. I might go completely mad, if I have to ponder one more bigger, smaller, faster, better, stronger, sleeker iThing.

What do you think of the new phone with its larger screen and the iPad with its new smaller screen? Are you enticed by either? Talk back and let me know.

*Yes, sadly, I used a forbidden word from reality TV. I apologize.

Topics: Apple, Android, iPad, iPhone

About

Kenneth 'Ken' Hess is a full-time Windows and Linux system administrator with 20 years of experience with Mac, Linux, UNIX, and Windows systems in large multi-data center environments.

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