Why does iPad not have a wide screen ratio?

Discussion in 'iPad' started by Jackintosh, Jun 30, 2012.

  1. Jackintosh, Jun 30, 2012
    Last edited: Jun 30, 2012

    Jackintosh macrumors 6502a


    Mar 21, 2009
    Compared to all the competition (including Nexus 7), Apple seems to insist on keeping the old style, square 4:3 screen ratio instead of going with a wide screen 16:9.

    Considering the advantages in viewing movies/videos with wide screen, why does Apple continue to stay with the old 4:3 for iPad?
  2. Carouser macrumors 65816

    Feb 1, 2010
    Are you serious?

    Because they currently don't want developers to have to work with a new screen ratio; because the iPad is used for more than viewing movies and videos, and thus one has to consider the ergonomics of it; and because there aren't any advantages to it at all, besides catering to a few dweebs who worry about black bars on their screen.
  3. Rodster macrumors 68040

    May 15, 2007
    Thank god Apple is one of the few mfg's that still uses 4:3/5:4/16:10. The x:9 format sucks and it needs to go the way of Flash.
  4. BFizzzle macrumors 68020


    May 31, 2010
    Austin TX
    i didnt know it had anything to do with the interaction and safety of my work environment
  5. Carouser macrumors 65816

    Feb 1, 2010
    It's a device used in portrait and landscape mode, with either hand holding and touching potentially any edge and face of it, at multiple angles. It's crucial to consider the effect of the dimensions, proportions, and balance of such a device given how people interact with it physically. Aspect ratio, in this case, affects more than how it looks, it affects how it's handled.
  6. APlotdevice, Jun 30, 2012
    Last edited: Jun 30, 2012

    APlotdevice macrumors 68040


    Sep 3, 2011
    Look at the position of the camera and home button. Unlike most tablets, the iPad was designed first around the portrait orientation. 16:9 is an awkward ratio for portrait. Those black letterbox bars end up on magazines, PDF documents, and most photos. And of course makes everything more narrow.
  7. darngooddesign macrumors G3

    Jul 4, 2007
    Atlanta, GA
    In landscape mode, 16:9 is worse for web browsing. You'll see even less height.
  8. Redjericho macrumors 6502a

    Sep 16, 2011
    The iPad was actually designed to be a portrait-held device, not landscape.
  9. mrsir2009 macrumors 604


    Sep 17, 2009
    Melbourne, Australia
  10. PlaceofDis macrumors Core

    Jan 6, 2004
    ipad ≠ video only device

    really its as simple as that. its designed around having a lot of uses and not just for playing movies or other video content.
  11. ThatsMeRight macrumors 68020

    Sep 12, 2009
    Because the onliest advantage of a 16:9 display is watching widescreen movies. For everything else - browsing, reading, photos, etc. - a 4:3 display has a clear advantage over a 16:9 display. ;)


    When they first announced the iPad, they advertised a lot with "You can hold it any way you want."
  12. cube macrumors P6

    May 10, 2004
  13. Phil A. Moderator

    Phil A.

    Staff Member

    Apr 2, 2006
    Shropshire, UK
    The aspect ratio of the iPad is, IMO, one of its strengths - widescreen tablets are hopeless in portrait mode whereas the iPad works equally well in portrait and landscape
  14. The New iPad macrumors regular

    Jun 5, 2012
    ...most laptops are 16:9
  15. darngooddesign macrumors G3

    Jul 4, 2007
    Atlanta, GA
    Yes, but on those laptops not only can you reduce the width of your browser window, but they don't force the site to scale up to the width which magnifies everything and reduces the amount of things you see vertically. 16:9 would be ok only if sites didn't rescale to fill the width of the screen.
  16. APlotdevice macrumors 68040


    Sep 3, 2011
    Most laptops also have bigger screens than the iPad. And you can't use them in portrait. (well you could, but it's awkward)
  17. johndallas999 macrumors 6502a


    Oct 9, 2008
    That's true and when is the last time you saw a computer LCD that was a 4:3 ratio? And i'd say most pcs aren't used for watching movies. This is just Apple being stubborn and doing things their way IMO.
  18. Rodster macrumors 68040

    May 15, 2007
    Three cheers for Apple then. :apple: :apple: :apple:
  19. tmarks11, Jul 1, 2012
    Last edited: Jul 1, 2012

    tmarks11 macrumors 6502a

    May 3, 2010
    "4:3 is about Apple being stubborn"?

    4:3 ratio rocks.

    One of the reason that I have never considered seriously any of the competition is that I don't want what is obviously a portable media player; something designed primarily for playing HD movies, that can do a couple of other things,just not well.

    Ever notice the ratio of an 8.5x11 piece of paper, or a hard bound or paperback book? Yep, not 16x9. Because that would just be annoying.

    16x9 works great on a 24" screen because you can lay two screens side by side. Not so much on a 9" screen.
  20. SteveAbootman macrumors 6502a


    May 12, 2008
    Consider for a moment that the competition went 16:9 as a way to differentiate from the iPad. For them it's a selling point and one they'll potentially try to market as an advantage over iPad.

    The reality is that Apple considered a lot of factors when designing the product and went with the one they thought best for users. They did not design a product to be one that was merely different than a competitors product.
  21. Virgo macrumors 6502a


    Jun 7, 2011
    Los Angeles, CA
    To me, the iPad and its apps replace a lot of things we used to do on normal paper. That's why it's shaped like a PAD of paper.. and this gives it way more uses than if it were to be shaped like an awkward skinny rectangle.
  22. barjam macrumors 6502

    Jul 4, 2010
    I would much prefer if they quit tying computer monitor ratio to movie ratio. 16:9 is awful productivity tasks such as programming. The average monitor from 10 years ago offered more vertical pixels than the average monitor of today.

    Tablets that are 16x9 do not fit a standard tablet or "notepad" form factor.

    Kudos to apple for doing this right.
  23. tmarks11 macrumors 6502a

    May 3, 2010
    ++1. I replaced my 4:3 20" 1600x1200 5 year old monitor with two 24" 1920x1068 16:9 monitors. This is progress? Lower resolution?

    Only a few monitors are offered with 1200 vical pixels, and this are expensive, as are the very few 4:3 monitors produced today. Manufacturers embraced the 16:9 format because it was both a marketing and manufacturing cost reduction ploy.
  24. barjam macrumors 6502

    Jul 4, 2010
    You could also flip that 1600x1200 on its side and have a usable screen you can't do that with 1080p.
  25. xraytech macrumors 68030

    Mar 24, 2010
    Yes, but can you hold you laptop in portrait orientation.

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