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macrumors bot
Original poster
Apr 12, 2001

Since their September launch, Apple's iPhone 6 and 6 Plus have produced record-setting revenue and sales for Apple, but looking beyond financials, the handset also is radically changing the reading habits of those who own the large-sized devices, according to news-reading service Pocket.

Pocket recently analyzed 2 million article and video opens and examined the reading behavior of readers both before and after the launch of the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus. In particular, the study compared how iPhone and iPad usage changed after the recent iPhone launch.


According to the results, customers with an iPhone 5s and an iPad spent an equal amount of time with each device. As users adopted the iPhone 6, however, they spent considerably more time reading on their iPhones than on their iPads, with users choosing their iPhone over the iPad 72 percent of the time.

This trend was even greater among iPhone 6 Plus owners, who grabbed their iPhones 80 percent of the time when they wanted to read. The big screen of the iPhone 6 Plus also increased video watching by 40 percent.

Even before it was announced, analysts expected the larger-screened iPhone 6 and 6 Plus would cannibalize iPad sales, especially for the 7.9-inch iPad mini. Overall, iPad sales are on the decline, dropping as much as 12.7 percent year over year as the tablet market begins to slow.

Article Link: iPhone 6 and 6 Plus Changing Users' Reading Habits as iPad Usage Declines


macrumors 604
Aug 2, 2002
Cork, Ireland.
There's also an element of "newest, shiniest device" though. When I got my iPhone, I started using that more. Then I bought an iPad Air, which I used for everything. Next week I'm getting a new MacBook Pro, which I'll use more..


macrumors member
Feb 11, 2014
Same here. I don't use my iPad Air that much now but I think the main reason why the results show that more people read on their iPhone is that they just have it with them all the time. Who takes an iPad out everyday?


macrumors G3
Oct 5, 2008
Sounds reasonable. I never liked watching movies on my phone or tablet, but the 6 Plus has been the only device that I've felt comfortable watching movies on. My iPad was too big and my other iPhones were too small.


Mar 26, 2008
I love how these numbers are always like "seventy-two percent". How do they even determine those numbers?

Is it talking about reading on the Web or actual books? I can't do it on either, too much distraction lol I have my kindle for that which can't do anything else

Edit: nvm I am blind


macrumors 601
Jul 28, 2007
There's also an element of "newest, shiniest device" though. When I got my iPhone, I started using that more. Then I bought an iPad Air, which I used for everything. Next week I'm getting a new MacBook Pro, which I'll use more..

Sorry but tablets are saturated these days. The upgrade cycle with tablets for most regular consumes is probably closer to every 3 years. Most people with iPad 2 are now just entertaining thoughts of upgrading. iPad 2 released in early 2011.

Whereas cell phone upgrades are closer to every 18-24 months. Most people who own iPhone are already on iPhone 5 or newer. Iphone 5 released in fall 2012.


macrumors regular
Dec 9, 2009
Lot of ipad 2 users whose iPads have been bricked by ios8 accounting for some of this.


macrumors Haswell
May 3, 2009
I find I'm using my ip6+ more and my rMini less and less, so the numbers in the story hold true for me.


macrumors 65816
Feb 4, 2010
Just sold my iPad mini that I got a month ago. Purchased the iPad mini new and still didn't use it as much as i would like. So, for some the newness factor doesn't count.
Now, I rely on my iPhone 6 plus.


macrumors 68000
Aug 9, 2012
My 6+ is great for reading articles when I'm away from home. At home, I reach for my Nexus 7. Make no mistake, the difference between 5.5" and 7" is vast. I also don't care for the funky downscaling on the 6+, which I find makes text less crisp.

Then again, I'm sort of OCD about displays. Most people don't care and will use whatever device they have. Also, most people do not read books. For short articles a phablet is fine.


macrumors newbie
Jan 27, 2014
Sadly, books created in Apple's own iBooks Author won't open in iBooks on an iPhone. They still only open on iPads. Was hoping they'd enable this with iOS 8, or on a 6plus...


macrumors 6502a
Sep 9, 2007
I would think most people reach for the largest screen they have with them when they need it.


macrumors 6502a
Jul 10, 2014
I think the iPhone 6, Air 2, MacBook Pro trio is perfect for any use that I need. Hopefully with a significant refresh with the iPad line with the iPad Pro numbers will go back up


macrumors 68030
Jun 2, 2010
Upgrading an iPad 2 to iOS 8 would be like upgrading my already horribly laggy iPad 3 to iOS 9. Not smart.

And the really sad thing is that the iPad 2 actually has much more effective horsepower than the iPad 3 given how hard the iPad 3 has to work just to drive all those pixels. Believe me, as an iPad 3 owner, I'm right there with you. Just yesterday, I deleted a bunch of apps from my iPad 3 because I'm using it less and less all the time. The good news is, I now have plenty of space to install 8.1.2 OTA. :rolleyes:


macrumors G5
May 2, 2002
I wish the Kindle app allowed zero side-margins (makes sense in black mode on black iPhones/iPads) for maximum reading area. It's close, but not quite. And iBooks? It only has HUGE wasteful margins. I'd kill for iBooks to offer Kindle app's thin margins. Even in white mode, thin margins just make sense on a pocket device

Lose those wasteful margins and a 6 Plus is very close to the printed text portion of a paperback page.

Also: with people using an iPhone 6/Plus like an iPad Mini some of the time, that frees up market/use cases for a relatively home-bound device: a BIGGER iPad (Pro or whatever). Even better for movies in bed/on the couch, even better for art, even better for touch gaming. (And yes, general productivity too!) I'm not sure I'd ever want a 13" iPad enough to give up my perfect 10" Air... but the 6 Plus makes it much more possible for me to consider.

EDIT: the great thing about the iPhone 6 vs. an iPad is the lightness for one-hand use. Of course the Air 2 is making strides, but wider still means more downward leverage. A 6 Plus is just really easy to hold and read, and I like that I can rotation-lock just the Kindle app and not the whole phone. (I still read 70% of the time on my iPad 2, but pre-phablet, it used to be 99%.)
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macrumors regular
Dec 13, 2009
Scranton, PA
I have to agree with the article... I recently purchased an iPad Air 2 and still find myself using my iPhone 6 Plus in situations that I used to use an iPad.


macrumors 68040
Jun 29, 2012
Isn't this an obvious conclusion though? The iPhone went through a major change in form factor while the iPad hasn't changed in years. The number of people who purchased new iPhones is far greater than those who purchased iPads so again there will be more people using new iPhones over new iPads let alone any iPad.

Mathematically and statistically speaking this data holds no weight in percentage form. For example if 80% of 6+ users picked up their iPhone to read over their iPad then it doesn't really make much sense. I would absolutely pick up my iPhone 6 to read over an iPad 1, 2, 3, 4, or Air. Wouldn't anyone? People want to use the brand new shiny device that costs an arm and a leg over the older one. The data only references iPad not which iPad which obviously skews the result in favor of the title.


Dec 6, 2012
Maybe it's me, but this does not represent my usage at all. I love my iphone 6 and i use it for emails at work through the Good App. I use it to see my tasks through the Things App. I use it for Car2Go and Carshare. I use it for Maps and directions. I use it for photography and music. I text and make calls. there are a few other things, but that is all where the phone shine for me. When I want to write (like this) or read, or enter the tasks, edit photos, play games like Clash of Clans, etc. I do all that on my ipad. The iphone is to small to really do these things IMO. and the keyboard is way to small for any real writing except for the quick text message.

So for me I am clearly not in the majority that this article calls out for and I am frankly amazed that people can use the phone's small screen and small keyboard for anything major.


Mar 10, 2012
The biggest change I have experienced is that I no longer take an MBA, iPad and iPhone on long trips. My latest trip to Japan was with iPhone 6+ and MBA. Didn't miss the iPad once.

However, around the house I still use the iPad for general reading, service manuals when working in the garage, and streaming video when I have to use cellular (UDP on the iPad doesn't throttle).


macrumors G3
Nov 26, 2007
Don't have an iPad and can't imagine ever wanting one, now that I have my 6+.

The iPad is too big to be as convenient as my 6+ (can't put the iPad in my pocket), and it's not as good as a MacBook Air.

I don't know what the use case for an iPad is anymore.
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