Steve Jobs Turned Out To Be Completely Wrong About Why People Like The iPhone

Excited about the new iPhone 6 plus? Steve Jobs would have been surprised. Check out this excerpt from Business Insider’s Jim Edwards or read the full article HERE.

The launch of iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus — and the latter’s massive 5.5-inch screen — appear to prove that Apple founder Steve Jobs was completely wrong when he said in 2010 that “no one” would want to buy a phone with a big screen.

And while this sort of hindsight wisdom feels a little bit tawdry, it actually cuts to the heart of what is driving the $276 billion smartphone market right now: screen size.

Apple launched its new phone with 4.7- and 5.5-inch screens for a reason: Rival companies, particularly Samsung, have spent the past two years building a market in a space that Apple ignored — the market for people who want big, bright screens that are great for consuming mediaand doing work.

To recap: Jobs launched iPhone and its initial updates with a 3.5-inch screen. When the iPhone 4 ran into trouble because it appeared to drop calls when users held it the “wrong” way, Jobs held a news conference. He was asked, why not just make the phone bigger, so that the antenna might have more space within the device and thus get better reception?

He replied that he disliked the new crop of bigger phones from Samsung et al. “You can’t get your hand around it,” he said, “no one’s going to buy that.” He also derided big phones as “Hummers.”

By 2013, however, executives within Apple began to rethink that. Internal documents from that time show that iPhone sales growth was slowing, even though the market as a whole was growing. All the growth was in the sub-$300 price range and among phones with screens bigger than 4 inches. “Consumers want what we don’t have,” was the title of one slide in the documents.

Another document showed that Apple’s own customers placed the small screen size of the iPhone 5, 5C, and 5S among their top complaints about the devices. The iPhone’s small screen size actually seemed to be a liability for Apple, not — as Jobs argued three years earlier — an advantage.

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