The Screen Size Debate

Posted on 16 March 2006, Last updated on 08 January 2015 by


There has been a lot of talk lately about how the Ultra Mobile PC devices that have been shown are too big. Some have been asking, “Why can’t it be small like an iPod so I can carry it around in my pocket?”. Or, “This device is so big it could bludgeon people to death.”

Well, these are good points so I started thinking, “has the ultra mobile PC lost its ultra mobileness?” After a while I came to the conclusion that if it was much smaller then it is then it would be too hard to use and in the end everyone would hate it.

Now stay with me here while I explain this. I know that the OQO is 4.9 inches across and the Nokia 770 is like 5.5 inches and the Samsung is almost a whopping 9 inches! The ultra mobile PC devices are almost double the size. And believe me I want to put the thing in my pocket as much as the next guy. And this pic from [url=]internettablettalk.coms forum[/url] shows exactly how much bigger this thing really is.


Pics like this may make me change my mind and realize small is good. But, Otto posted over on [url=][/url] that the reason they went with a 7 inch display is because that was the size of portable DVD players and I realized that Microsoft had a plan.

And so that brings me to the first point about the screen size. Obviously this device is being marketed as a media playing device. Microsoft has partnered with MovieLink to bring downloadable movies to the device.

Take a look at the picture at the top of this article. That is an almost to scale picture showing the difference between Apple’s video iPod and the Samsung Q1.

Now the thing I hate about the video iPod is that it is so small. and not only is it small but the videos downloaded for it have to be to a certain scale so you have to convert your video streams if you rip them. You have to go through all of the effort of not only getting it the right size but also all of the effort of actually watching it on such a small screen. And I know people who can actually watch whole movies this way.

I go through this same problem with my PSP. the screen is definitely bigger than a video iPod but the converting is still a pain.

Story continued below …[b]Second Point:[/b] The one thing that I can’t get past is how if a screen was any smaller than 5 inches it would be useful at all for anything computer related.

This device is also being marketed at business and executive type people. Now a bulk of what these people do all day is answer emails write up docs, make excel sheets and play solitaire. I imagine it is hard on the eyes to try to stare at the Nokia 770 screen while trying to create a spreadsheet. So I am concluding that the Nokias purpose isn’t for spreadsheets though the ultra mobile PC devices obviously are.

This is a PC that you can install anything on and take to your grandmothers. So while you are there you can actually get real computer work done without bothering everybody with a huge laptop.

[b]Last Point:[/b] Do you really want a full fledged computer that is so small it can get lost in your pocket.

I have had one experience with a cellphone before where I was about to go swimming and I left it in my pocket. I got in the water and all of the sudden it hit me that I had forgot to take it out. Instantly ruined it.

I know a guy who got a brand new iPod Video and left it in his pants when he washed them. You know what it did? after he took it out of the water it had a little frowny face on the lcd screen and it hasn’t worked since.

Think about this; A computer has way more important data on it then an iPod or a cellphone. once that computer gets wet, you’ve fried something. and I’m sure that hard drive won’t be working the correct way when you attempt to retrieve the lost files. The last thing I want to do is accidentally wash a PC. And I’ll bet 770 owners have done it.

So, these are just my thoughts. Obviously some of you won’t agree with me. feel free to comment about it and tell me why I’m wrong. In the mean time I’m going to go hang my wet cell phone on the clothes line and hope it starts working again.

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