It’s Just Too Big

You know what they say, it’s not the size that matters, it’s how you use it.

It seems the new size for Smartphones is a 51/2 inch (thanks Apple!), with Google’s next-gen Nexus going as far as 6 inches. Put two of these monsters together and you get a whole foot of a phone. That’s just ain’t right.

I don’t buy into the whole “you use two hands to operate your phone anyway” deal. It’s just not true. Opinions like this on Lifehacker annoy me:

Here’s the biggie though: You probably use a smartphone with one hand much less often than you might imagine. More importantly, you can easily adjust to using it with two hands, and it’s completely worth it

Uhh, no. Wrong.

I decided to test this theory by keeping my left hand in my pocket and use my phone only with my right*. Not only did I not notice any difference, I forgot I was experimenting one hand usage, because guess what: one hand usage is what I do natrually. Check this out:

  • Checking notifications? One hand (slide from the top).
  • Replying emails quickly? One hand (I use SwiftKey).
  • Reading articles on on the Subway, using my other hand to hold on? Unless I want to free-fly into a random person, one hand.
  • Taking the phone out of my pocket in cold weather, removing only one glove? One hand. Rain? One hand. Snow? One hand.
  • Using Google Maps, Foursquare, and other location apps? One hand. I even double-tap instead of pinching to zoom in the map.
  • Checking the time (I do this more often than I’d like to admit)? One hand.

The only time I use two hands with my phone is when I play games (rarely) or write long email responses or ideas for my stories. Even chatting is one handed, or often by voice-recognition. One hand usage is so central to my phone usage, that I even developed the right hang coordination to wiggle it in my hand to get to the top left corner, which is out of reach for me. With a 51/2 inch phone, it’s just not gonna happen, period.

I’m a short guy (5'6"). I love the small keyboards of my 11" Chromebook. I buy my shirts and pants online because they never have my size at the store. I had to returned medium-sized gloves and get extra small size so they actually fit like a glove. I was hoping I could enjoy compact, comfortable-to-use smartphones for a very long time, but no.

Those of you who like big screens: I do have a tablet (Nexus 7) which I use for work, where I need to show my screen to clients often. It does its job well. I would never carry it in my pocket though or use it as my primary device, because of its size. It’s just not comfortable. did you try tie your shoes with one of these biggies in your pocket, stabbing at you lunch? And people whine that the 6 plus bends. Just stop eating, and your problems are solved.

Looks like my only option at this point, if I want to upgrade, is the Sony Z3 Compact. I don’t know, I really like how the Nexus 4 I have is pure Google and is easy to modify with my favorite ROMs. The Nexus 6 was a disappoint to me. A big one. I just hope my Nexus 4 will keep serving me while I’m waiting on an upgrade that won’t look like I grew a hardon out of my left pocket.

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