The Woz says Apple should've introduced a bigger-screened iPhone years ago

The Woz says Apple should've introduced a bigger-screened iPhone years ago
Steve Wozniak, Apple co-founder and tech tinkerer extraordinaire, hasn't been keen on keeping his opinions to himself when it comes to the mobile industry and, more importantly, the company he helped start all those years back. In fact, the Woz has, more than once, said that he is an Android fan and one of the reasons for that were the bigger screens – he also recently said (probably jokingly) that the new, bigger iPhones have finally led him to throw all of his Androids away.

Anyway, on this topic, the Woz recently talked to CNN and said that, in his opinion, Apple could've had a much bigger share of the mobile market, had it released an iPhone with a larger screen 3 years ago, instead of resisting the trend. He adds that this would've helped Cupertinians compete better with Samsung.

We do see what Mr. Wozniak means – this year's iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus sales are marking an all-time high and every analyst cites the bigger screen as the culprit, though we wouldn't say that Apple was losing at something, when compared to Samsung – after all, Sammy, who has a bigger share in the smartphone market, hasn't been doing so good in terms of revenue this past year.

The Woz also commented on the upcoming Apple Watch. He has been vocal about finding wearables to be useless in the past and it seems his opinion hasn't changed much, as he said he finds the Apple Watch to be nothing but a “luxury fitness band”. He is still going to give it a try when it comes out, of course.

source: CNNMoney via iMore

Related phones

iPhone 6
  • Display 4.7" 750 x 1334 pixels
  • Camera 8 MP / 1.2 MP front
  • Processor Apple A8, Dual-core, 1400 MHz
  • Storage 128 GB
  • Battery 1810 mAh(14h 3G talk time)
iPhone 6 Plus
  • Display 5.5" 1080 x 1920 pixels
  • Camera 8 MP / 1.2 MP front
  • Processor Apple A8, Dual-core, 1400 MHz
  • Storage 128 GB
  • Battery 2915 mAh(24h 3G talk time)



1. tiara6918

Posts: 2263; Member since: Apr 26, 2012

Apple loves to play catch-up. Their specs are features of android devices 2-3 years ago. Android devices start the trend and apple just copies it afterwards

6. Sreddy unregistered

Well do you knw how that specs perforn and represent it self? that so called play catch up spec is one of the best performer out there. Be glad , dont hate>

10. tiara6918

Posts: 2263; Member since: Apr 26, 2012

I know it's not really about the specs, but in reality apple really is catching up with the competition instead of it being the other way around. Before apple was the one innovating and oems have shaped their devices based on what they were seeing from apple, now it's the other way around

17. Slammer

Posts: 1515; Member since: Jun 03, 2010

The problem is where does Apple go from here? If the screen size was the only thing holding people back, does this mean advances in technology cease from here forward? Apple has a knack for always offering just enough to keep its users interested while the rest of the world likes enjoying the lastest possible. Doesn't matter if it is seasoned. I want it now. I don't want to spend more on a product that offers less than what everyone else is enjoying. I represent the 85% of the non-Apple users. I was around during Apple's inception and even was an Apple user for 11years. There comes a time when you sit down and say enough is enough. Apple makes all the money and I get to wait for the next big thing? Apple does a lot of things really well, but not at the expense of compromise on my part. John B.

8. tiara6918

Posts: 2263; Member since: Apr 26, 2012

Even as an apple hater, I'd like to try an iphone6/6+ as a daily driver having been an android user for the past 4 years since they finally made the screen larger and that was something I was waiting for them to do

11. Planterz

Posts: 2120; Member since: Apr 30, 2012

Believe it or not, I'm kinda the opposite. Not in being an Apple hater, but that there's many times I've looked at used iPhone 4s prices. I ride a bike everywhere, so I don't like having a large phone flopping around in my pocket. And with the exception of those 2 Sony compacts, small Androids suck. The 4s is small, runs well enough, has a very good camera, and there's an absurd amount of cases, accessories, and gadgets for it. But then I remember it has only HSPA 14.4 Mb/s speeds. I guess that wouldn't be too horrible - I know lots of people still with 4's and 4s', and they seem to get around, plus T-Mobile does have a very good 3G network here and elsewhere. I briefly borrowed a HTC Sensation 4G, and it only had 14.4Mb/s HSPA, and I was pulling 10-12Mb/s in my apartment, which is more than I got with my LTE Verizon phone. Battery will still suck though. Someday maybe. But I just quit my job and am barely starting my new one, so money's gonna be tight for a while.

31. Napalm_3nema

Posts: 2236; Member since: Jun 14, 2013

The 4S is still one of the nicest phones (from a design standpoint) ever made. Hope you get back on your feet quickly and the new job treats you well.

33. Planterz

Posts: 2120; Member since: Apr 30, 2012

Thanks brother. Same sh!t, different uniform. Only temporary, I hope. I've been working a "job" for 16 years, it's time I look for something more like a "career". Top of the list is T-Mobile. I know so much about cell phones, I should get paid to jabber about them all day, right?

34. sgodsell

Posts: 7430; Member since: Mar 16, 2013

Then you don't know anything about Android or you just want to bash Android. Please to say the iPhone 4S is still relevant especially when you look at the specs of the iPhone 4S, a phone that launched back in 2011. Now there is lots of great inexpensive Androids that are small and much newer. For example the Moto X 2013 is really inexpensive right now with a lot of great features. If you don't want to pay a lot then the Moto G LTE is excellent. For a little bit more money the One plus one is really great as well as the nexus 5. The newer slightly larger moto G 2014 with dual stereo speakers and 8mp camera with expandable storage is only $179 brand new. There are many more great Androids that are small and with a great price. Instead you are looking at well oiled and none replaceable iPhone 4S which is not made any more. Makes no sense.

36. Planterz

Posts: 2120; Member since: Apr 30, 2012

sgodsell, you completely misunderstood what I said. Read post #2, then reread #11 which you think you're responding to, in context of post #8.

2. Planterz

Posts: 2120; Member since: Apr 30, 2012

The man's not wrong, and the sales of the 6/6+ confirm that. As much as I love to bash on Apple's practice of sitting on technology to force their customers to keep buying their stuff (if you disagree, explain why the iPad Mini didn't have a retina display 6 months after the iPad 3 did), I can't claim that resisting making larger phones for so long was part of this kind of ploy. Apple lost a lot of customers to Samsung and other manufacturers simply because tiny screens suck for games, videos, and typing. And with Android flagships flaunting features like IR blasters, waterproofness, front-facing speakers, and QHD screens, Apple is unlikely to win back as many customers as they lost.

5. Micah007

Posts: 266; Member since: Oct 09, 2014

This +1

13. Slammer

Posts: 1515; Member since: Jun 03, 2010

---"Apple lost a lot of customers to Samsung and other manufacturers simply because tiny screens suck for games, videos, and typing."--- Keep in mind that even when losing some defectors, Apple still manages to make more profits than its previous year. If Apple would've offered the larger screens a couple of years ago, this would've forced Apple to offer much more this year and every year to stay on its profitable bottom line. Apple is super profitable by offering older tech at peak demand rates. Larger screens would've cost Apple more a couple of years ago severely cutting into its profit margin. This is Apple's 36 year old practice. It's nothing new and it is unlikely to change as long as its user base keeps purchasing into the ecosystem. John B.

20. Planterz

Posts: 2120; Member since: Apr 30, 2012

"Larger screens would've cost Apple more a couple of years ago severely cutting into its profit margin." How do you figure that?

24. Slammer

Posts: 1515; Member since: Jun 03, 2010

Because small screens were becoming outdated for high end devices. While everyone was implementing larger screens that cost 45-60% more then than they do now, Apple was paying almost next to nothing for the smaller screens but charging as much for its phone as the competition with larger screens. And people were lining up to pay the extra. As technology becomes more standard, the price typically drops. Apple has successfully engineered its OS to run optimal on older tech perceiving better operation. This allows Apple to do more with less but charge the same or more for its products. This translates to massive profits equalling 60-75% profit on every phone sold. John B.

29. Planterz

Posts: 2120; Member since: Apr 30, 2012

Slammer, I see what you're saying, but do you think the cheaper costs of the smaller screens offsets the profit they may have lost by not offering larger screens and losing customers to Android? For example, giving the 4/4s a 4-4.5" screen, the 5/5s a 4.5-5.0" screen to match what was commonly available to Android customers at the same time? I don't really have an answer to my own question. I know people that switched from iPhone to Android because they wanted a bigger screen, and I know people that stuck with iPhone because they didn't want a huge phone. Maybe it WAS Apple's plan to sit on larger phones (not-so-subtle Bendgate joke), making iPhone fans more and more hungry for a larger screen. It just strikes me as odd that they waited so long, and that they made such a big jump instead of the gradual increases that Android phones have made. Either it was deliberate (in which case it baffles me), or it's an admission of of a mistake for ignoring a large and growing market.

38. Slammer

Posts: 1515; Member since: Jun 03, 2010

Apple's tight vertical integration allows it to successfully fall in the middle of intentional delay and the demands of public pressure and competiton. Losing customers is not what a company wants. But, Apple's huge priorty on massive profits, has governed itself to make money through other ventricles within its ecosystem. It essentially would rather let a customer walk away than to make concessions through sacrificing profits. If your neighbor sells tons of hot dogs with condiments included for a buck and you sell more hot dogs for the same price or higher without condiments, why change? Why spend profits on condiments if it isn't affecting business? Even if a few leave for the condiments, the percentage isn't offsetting the profitable difference that much. Apple sells more iPhones than its competitors. It knows its diehard customers are going to purchase its products regardless if it is offering the latest or not. If some leave, it doesn't really hurt its bottom line due to the profits it makes on one sale alone. Only when the public demand is creeping to an equal level of Apple's control, will Apple make a move. Its been this way for 36 years. We called it carrot dangling. Again, Apple does a lot of things well. But, I have found that the things it does well is limited in contrast to what I demand on a personal and financial level. John B.

35. sgodsell

Posts: 7430; Member since: Mar 16, 2013

You left out a big part. Apples ecosystem is totally under its control. Even some types of apps are not allowed on the app store. Since Apple is a closed, wall garden and everything comes under Apples Microscope.

21. Cicero

Posts: 1136; Member since: Jan 22, 2014

Yep! Apple offer to their hard core supporters a "great" 128GB memory at a hefty price. LOL

23. Iodine

Posts: 1493; Member since: Jun 19, 2014

Why iPad mini didn't get an Retina display display ? Because an amourphous silicon backplane at such high densites sucks a lot of power. iPad mini was supposed to be an ultrathin wafer you could take anywhere, not a brick like iPad 3/4.

30. Planterz

Posts: 2120; Member since: Apr 30, 2012

If the reason is power consumption, then why the retina display on the Mini 2 and Mini 3? Your argument makes zero sense. OK, I'll grant that the Mini 2 is a hair thicker, an ounce heavier, and with a larger battery compared to the original Mini, but they could have made the Mini with the same specs as the Mini 2 from the get-go. Maybe not the A7 chip, but at least with the A6 that the iPhone 5 had, and with the retina display. But no. They knew they could overcharge for a low-spec'd device, then get people's money again in a year when they up the specs to what they should have been in the first place considering the price and compared to comparable Android tablets. This is, and for a long time, has been Apple's M.O.

3. Micah007

Posts: 266; Member since: Oct 09, 2014

Yeah I won't lie I love Android but the bigger screens from Apple almost made me switch camps. I'm still going with Android at the moment, but Apple did the right thing increasing the screen size. Iphone 4 and 5 look so tiny next to the 6.

16. Finalflash

Posts: 4063; Member since: Jul 23, 2013

I don't see what changed in the iPhone when they got bigger screens that people actually think they need to go to back. As far as I have seen it is just a whole lot of the nostalgia factor making people think of the "good old days" with their iPhone. Then they try it and realize "oh yea, this is why I left" and head right back over. The iPhone 6/+ offers a little change to some of the people in the WP/Android camp and so they'll try it, but guaranteed as soon as the next few Android flagships come out these people will jump right back and wait for the same nostalgia factor in another 2-3 years that it takes Apple to change things in their lineup.

18. Micah007

Posts: 266; Member since: Oct 09, 2014

I agree. I'm waiting for either the HTC One M9, LG G4, or Samsung Galaxy S6. Which ever comes out first with a 64bit chip will be my next phone. But your right about the nostalgia rush, I have never owned an IPhone because of the lack of customization, more than 1GB of RAM, processors that are behind in the spec race, and lack of anything above a 720p screen (granted the 6+ has solved this). Hopefully the IPhone 7 will finally step up completely.

19. Slammer

Posts: 1515; Member since: Jun 03, 2010

The only thing that has changed, is the Apple supporters are finally offered something we've been enjoying for the last several years. Those that switch back to Apple for a larger screen or leave Android just for the larger screen are short-sighted. It is a temporary solution to what Apple has always practiced. One step always perceives a forward to an Apple product but, always equates to two steps back in the latest technology. For every one person I know that moved to an Apple product, I can name two that switched to Android. Apple is a great product, but so is Android with less strings attached. John B.

37. tacarat

Posts: 854; Member since: Apr 22, 2013

A fair amount of folks switched to android because of screen size. They were basically just visiting until Apple made their phone easier to read. If Apple was customer friendly and trying to win new customers they'd make a tool like Samsung's smart switch. Google is very open. They could import all the photos, contacts, etc seamlessly. But they won't, so oh well. It's a shame they buy their own ease of use and intuitiveness hype.

4. Sreddy unregistered

They surely should have.. but Job's ego got in the way. But im glad a larger iphones is out regardless.

7. Slammer

Posts: 1515; Member since: Jun 03, 2010

No disrespect to the Woz, but he obviously doesn't know Apple's MO. Much of what keeps Apple's success in check, is the ability to retain demand through anticipated wishes by the diehard user base. John B.

12. Planterz

Posts: 2120; Member since: Apr 30, 2012

What would he know, right? I mean, he's only the co-founder of the company...

14. Slammer

Posts: 1515; Member since: Jun 03, 2010

Read my rebuttal to your post above. I'm quite aware of who Woz is. John B.

Latest Stories

This copy is for your personal, non-commercial use only. You can order presentation-ready copies for distribution to your colleagues, clients or customers at or use the Reprints & Permissions tool that appears at the bottom of each web page. Visit for samples and additional information.