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How Apple Could Make the Move to 4.7″ iPhone Displays
Historically, Apple has been very cautious with resolution changes in their iOS devices. The original iPhone was launched with a 320×480 resolution. Eventually, Apple moved to 640×960 Retina display, doubling the linear resolution in each dimension. That allowed existing apps to simply be pixel-doubled to fill the entire screen. Developers could then take their time to update their apps to fully support the higher resolution display. When Apple moved from 3.5″ to 4″ screens in the iPhone 5, they simply added vertical resolution. This allowed existing apps to run in a letterboxed format with black bars at the top and bottom of the screen.
Auto Layout is a system that lets you lay out your app’s user interface by creating a mathematical description of the relationships between the elements. You define these relationships in terms of constraints either on individual elements, or between sets of elements. Using Auto Layout, you can create a dynamic and versatile interface that responds appropriately to changes in screen size, device orientation, and localization.
AutoLayout paves the way for apps to more easily adapt to changes in display sizes and resolution in the future.
If Apple were to adopt a 1334×750 4.7″ display as predicted by Kuo, it would preserve the same pixel density (326 ppi) as the iPhone 5s. That means that all existing user interface elements, such as icons, would be the same size but would allow for more screen space.
Our designer found that using the exact same icons and spacing them out to fill the screen, 1334×750 pixels allows Apple to fit exactly one extra row of icons onto the iPhone home screen. This mockup shows the relative size of the 4.7″ iPhone screen and how much extra room there would be using the exact same icons as on the current iPhone:
4″ home screen (left) vs 4.7″ home screen (right)
Meanwhile, existing unoptimized apps could function in a “letterbox” style with black borders for unused screen space. TheVerge forum user Pi is exactly 3 created a mockup showing this exact scenario. This image shows how an “unoptimized” app would appear (left) compared to one that has been optimized for the 4.7″ display (right):
Mockup by Pi is exactly 3
Given Apple’s past reluctance to blur or break existing apps, it seems that this resolution choice could provide Apple and developers a reasonable upgrade path for a larger factor iPhone. Apple has acknowledged that customers want larger iPhones and all iPhone 6 rumors are pointing to a larger iPhone device this year.
Creating a USB Installer for Apple OS X 10.9
Before proceeding, you’ll need the following items to complete the process:
- 8 GB USB Flash Drive (or SD Card)
- Install OS X Mavericks.app (installer downloaded from Mac App Store)
- Apple computer with Mac App Store (OS X 10.6.8+)
- User Account with Administrative privileges
Follow these steps:
- Using a Mac with at least OS X 10.6.8 installed, access the Mac App Store and download the Mavericks (10.9) app installer
- Insert the USB drive into the Mac and launch Disk Utility
- Click on the USB drive from the left-hand menu and select the Partition tab
- Click the drop-down menu, selecting 1 partition
- Select Mac OS Extended (Journaled) for the format-type from the drop-down menu (Figure A)
- Click on the Options button, select the radio button for GUID Partition Table, and click OK (Figure B)
- Launch the Terminal.app by selecting it from the /Applications | Utilities folder and execute the following command (Figure C)*:
defaults write com.apple.Finder AppleShowAllFiles TRUE;\killall Finder;\say Files Revealed
- Upon completion of the USB formatting, locate Install Mac OS X Mavericks.app(downloaded in step #1 to the Applications folder, by default). Right-click the file and select Show Package Contents (Figure D)
- Navigate the file structure Contents | Shared Support and double-click theInstallESD.dmg file mount OS X Install ESD on the desktop (Figure E)
- Double-click the mounted .dmg file and locate the hidden BaseSystem.dmg (Figure F)
- Go back to Disk Utility and click on the newly formatted USB Drive in the menu, then click on the Restore tab
- Drag the BaseSystem.dmg over to the Source text box. For Destination, drag and drop the partition created on the USB drive onto the textbox (Figure G)
- Upon verifying that the fields are correct, click the Restore button and select Erase from the application, if prompted to do so (Figure H)
- The process may indicate in excess of one hour, but in my experience, the process takes significantly less time to complete (Figure I)
- Once the files have finished copying over, the drive should mount automatically. Navigate the file structure to System | Installation and delete the alias to the Packagesdirectory (Figure J)
- Going back to the mounted Install ESD.dmg file on the desktop (step #10), locate the directory named Packages and copy it to the directory in step #15 (Figure K)
There you have it — a bootable copy OS X Mavericks on USB Flash Drive that can be used to install, upgrade, and/or troubleshoot compatible Apple computers. The process has become a bit more cumbersome, but once all the files are in their proper place, the USB drive works much the same. Simply insert your drive, power on the computer, and hold down the Option key to access the boot selection menu. From there, select the USB drive partition and press enter to initiate the boot process.
Fifty Sheds of Grey
Erotica for the not-too-modern male. 50 Sheds of Grey sequel, Fifty Sheds Damper out now.