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iPhone ‘Phablet’ mentality takes hold as 5.5-inch model grows in popularity

The iPhone 7 Plus demonstrated a serious growth in popularity of Apple’s larger devices between October and December 0f 2016, a new survey says.

Surveying a relatively small 500 consumers in the US, the report is nonetheless interesting for showing just how significant a jump there was in users that purchased a Plus model.

Here’s the key figures: 32 percent bought an iPhone 7 Plus in the three months shortly after its release, a jump on the 19 percent that bought the 6s Plus a year previous. 40 percent bought the regular iPhone 7 this year, which shows that the larger sized phone is rapidly catching up in popularity. The remaining 28 percent bought older iPhone models.


It’s worth noting the larger device’s popularity isn’t necessarily down to a consumer interest in larger phone sizes. 2017 was arguably the least progressive in terms of new features or design leading users hankering for a new iPhone to seek out the variants that provide the most difference to their device usage.

How to: Achieve the iPhone 7 Plus’ Portrait Mode blurring effect in photos using any iPhone or iPad model

For example, many on the 4.7-inch screen iPhones would potentially mix it up by choosing the larger model, while it’s also been reported that the new Jet Black finish proved incredibly popularly, potentially, because it provided as close to a new design as users would get with the iPhone 7. Finally, 2017 saw the two devices serious diverge for the first time. Previously, the Plus model only really had image stabilization, battery mode, and a landscape view over the smaller device. But in 2017, the 5.5-inch model received a serious bump: a dual camera, which opened users up to not only better photos, but a Portrait Mode.

Going further, the survey, which was conducted by research firm Consumer Intelligence Research Partners (CIRP) noted that a reduction in carrier costs had made larger devices more affordable despite higher pries.

Keep reading: 3D camera system heading to the 2017 iPhone? Apple is working on new tech