Gene Munster, Piper Jaffray analyst, asked 100 developers at WWDC 2012 in San Francisco, CA how tough it would be to adjust their applications if Apple were to change the screen size of the next iPhone and/or release an iPad mini.
Munster asked developers to rate the difficulty of adapting their applications to screen size changes on a scale of 1 to 10. The participating developers reported an average perceived difficulty of just 3.4 out of 10. Or, to put it less technically: “easy peasy lemon squeezy.”
“Given the relative ease expected by developers for utilizing potential new iOS screen sizes, we believe the introduction of new screen sizes would not affect the success or availability of the apps on iOS,” Munster said.
Though any screen size changes are limited to speculation at the moment, it is rumored that the next iPhone might be a smidge taller — 4 inches, with a 16:9 (widescreen) aspect ratio instead of the current 3.5 inches, with a 2:3 aspect ratio. Not only would this change give users a bigger screen, it also would make one-handed iPhone operation easier.
Applications designed for previous iPhones would run without an update on the larger screen size, but users would see horizontal black bars on the screen, not unlike those familiar to anyone who has watched standard definition programming on an HDTV.
Rumors that Apple will release an iPad mini persist as well. This smaller iPad would have a 7.85-inch screen, but its 1,024-by-768-pixel display would allow for applications designed for the original iPad and iPad 2 to run natively on the smaller screen without hiccups.
While 55 percent of the developers Muster surveyed report creating apps for Apple and Android OS, a whopping 84 percent rated iOS strongest in ease of development, while only 5 percent preferred Android, and 2 percent preferred Windows Phone.
The developer’s pro-iOS response bears out Apple’s commitment to uniformity when updating device specs. By doubling the resolution and adding a zoom feature (as we see when running an iPhone app on an iPad), or keeping one of the width or height constant (as we might see with the next generation iPhone), apps will not need an immediate update to run on the next generation of Apple devices.
[via Apple Insider]