What do you think is keeping the iPhone at its current 9mm thickness?

Discussion in 'iPhone' started by colbertnation, Oct 29, 2011.


What do you think is keeping the iPhone at its current 9mm thickness?

  1. Camera (Front and/or back)

    39 vote(s)
  2. System Chips

    3 vote(s)
  3. Battery

    22 vote(s)
  4. Combination of Chips + Battery

    26 vote(s)
  5. The antenna band outside the iPhone

    5 vote(s)
  6. Other

    9 vote(s)
  1. colbertnation macrumors regular

    Nov 20, 2009
    I think the phenomenal camera requires several mm's to function so well, and thus it's the culprit that's keeping the iPhone at 9mm.

    From the rumors of the teardrop shape, it'd make sense that the upper part is thicker than the bottom part to facilitate the inclusion of a brilliant camera.

    What do you guys think? The system chips inside? Battery?
  2. urkel macrumors 68030

    Nov 3, 2008
    Thin is impressive but its also very overrated.

    The phone doesnt need to get "thinner" as much as it needs to get more surface area in order to accomodate a bigger bezel-less screen (for those of us with adult hands and realize that phones havent been one handed devices for years).
  3. Koodauw macrumors 68040


    Nov 17, 2003
    The sim card slot is probably part of it. It takes up such a huge area in all of the tear down photos.
  4. TM WAZZA macrumors 68000

    Sep 18, 2010
    Hamilton, New Zealand
    Camera, radios, battery

    Personally, I think the iPhone 4/4S 's thickness is good. A really thin device can be uneasy to hold like the iPod touch 4. If the next iPhone have a teardrop design, I'm hoping it's a very subtle teardrop and that the weight is evenly distributed. An example of an ugly teardrop is this.

  5. Daveoc64 macrumors 601

    Jan 16, 2008
    Bristol, UK
    I think the photo above shows that the camera is the real issue here.

    I don't really see the need for the phone to get any thinner though.

    It could make it uncomfortable to hold and would probably make it easier to break.
  6. uiop. macrumors 68020


    Jul 22, 2008
    Grand Rapids, MI
    I think the 4/4S are quite uncomfortable to hold already. So if they go thinner, I hope its a tapered design similar to the previous iPhones and the iPad 2.
  7. ap3604 macrumors 68000

    Jan 11, 2011
    Making the phone any thinner (and decreasing the amount of heat sink space) would make it that much easier for the dual core A5 processor to overheat the other components of the phone... namely the battery.
  8. AIP5 macrumors 6502a

    Aug 2, 2011
    Hmm, I'd go for Camera. From the attached picture of the 4S camera from ifixit.com, it definitely looks like it's the thickest of the components. But it could be a combination of other things inside as well that leads to 9mm.

    Also, thinner is only better if they can keep the whole product sturdy and strong. I think Ive had it spot on in one of his interviews that people depend on a product's durability and physical strength against bending or something of the likes.

    So I'd be more than happy to welcome an iPhone that's thinner, as long as it's sturdy and strong. And tapered design is one of my requested features.

    Attached Files:

  9. OafTobark macrumors 6502


    Oct 24, 2011
    i would agree, i am fine with the thickness now. only thing i would like is if it was tapered like the iPhone 5 prototype we saw a few months ago.
  10. hakr100 macrumors 6502a

    Mar 1, 2011
    East Coast
    I'd like it thicker, if the thickness could accommodate a bigger battery.
  11. DillingerX macrumors newbie

    Oct 23, 2011
    I would say it's right where it needs to be, its not so big that it doesn't fit in your pocket and its not to light or flimsy you feel like you are going to break it

    Don't get me wrong if they release the next phone with a slightly bigger screen that's great but if they don't make it any thinner it wouldn't bother me one bit, as long as it has LTE ;)
  12. BFG86 macrumors 6502

    Oct 14, 2011
    I like it how it is now. Flat back and sides really nice
  13. Brazzy macrumors regular

    Oct 4, 2011
    of course it's the camera. i thought it was common knowledge.
  14. firewood macrumors 604

    Jul 29, 2003
    Silicon Valley
    So buy a clip on battery pack. Most other customers like a thin phone. Especially if it has to go in a pocket of any non-baggy outfit.
  15. Dangerous Theory macrumors 68000

    Jul 28, 2011
    Wirelessly posted (Mozilla/5.0 (iPhone; CPU iPhone OS 5_0 like Mac OS X) AppleWebKit/534.46 (KHTML, like Gecko) Version/5.1 Mobile/9A334 Safari/7534.48.3)

    It's clearly a combination of all the components. There isn't one single component you could remove that would allow the phone to evenly thinner, even if you restructured them.

    I would love to see it get thinner though and I'm pretty sure it will next time (even a teardrop shape would be awesome). Contrary to others here, I'd love it if the iP4 was ~33% thinner. It'd feel amazing.
  16. firewood macrumors 604

    Jul 29, 2003
    Silicon Valley
    Better camera requires bigger pixels at the same aperture ratio. Bigger pixels at a given aperture ratio requires a sufficiently long focal length, which requires a camera of a given thickness. Only way to go thinner would be tinier pixels or too few pixels that end up making cr*ppy photos in low light. Like the iPod Touch camera.

    As long as a good camera requires a certain device thickness, might as well put in a battery that adds up to the same thickness under the display so that the cellular talk and standby time aren't terrible.
  17. PNutts macrumors 601


    Jul 24, 2008
    Pacific Northwest, US

    man hands.jpg
  18. zhenya macrumors 603


    Jan 6, 2005
  19. watchthisspace macrumors 6502a

    Apr 11, 2010
    Don't rule out the mirco sim card holding and ejection system.

    A tear drop design wouldn't work, hold it sideways and it gets awkward.
  20. MarcBook macrumors 6502a


    Jul 13, 2008
    United Kingdom
    This! Although the tear-drop looks cool at first glance, using it would be a bit weird, I think, due to the asymmetrical design.

    All of Apple's touchscreen portables are symmetrical in either portrait or landscape, meaning that they feel fine in any orientation. A tear-drop would feel really weird when you turn it on its side for most games, taking photos etc.

    Personally, I wouldn't mind a new and thinner design for the next generation, but I want it to be symmetrical like the current one.
  21. AIP5 macrumors 6502a

    Aug 2, 2011
    Hah! Brilliant Seinfeld reference.

    You're definitely right in that it would feel awkward holding it. But to be honest, the flat-back 4S I have is definitely awkward to hold, when compared to the tapered edges of the 3GS, where my fingers had multiple contact points along its curve in the back.

    Also, I'm not sure how many people play racing games on their iPhones, but every time I hold it in landscape mode, I usually use one hand to hold it, and one hand for touch. So for me, it wouldn't be awkward at all. Plus, going solely off of the cases, and that German physical mockup, the teardrop aspect is greatly exaggerated. I could barely see it in the physical mockup.

    But who knows what they'll pump out in 2012... all I can say is that we can pretty much be certain that it will be a redesign, now with the 4S behind us. :)
  22. julianbdavis macrumors member


    Jun 2, 2011
  23. Rodimus Prime macrumors G4

    Rodimus Prime

    Oct 9, 2006
    I say the glass back. That is where I say at least 1-2mm of the thickness is form alone. It is from the very breakable glass back.
  24. AlvinNguyen macrumors 6502a

    Jun 23, 2010
    If they keep the next iphone at the same thickness but DOUBLE the battery life I'd LOVE IT! The only reason why I need the phone thinner is because I always use a battery case or some sort of thick case to cover it - if they have a bigger battery it would solve this problem.

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