Back in September, I was quick on the draw and managed to get my pre-order for an Apple (AAPL 0.83%) iPhone 6 Plus in early enough so that my device would be delivered on launch day. At the time I placed my pre-order, I wasn't sure if I wanted to get the iPhone 6 or the iPhone 6 Plus.
You see, I was a huge fan of my trusty-and-small iPhone 5s. At the same time, though, I wanted to have the more fully featured device. The iPhone 6 Plus had the display with the higher resolution/greater pixels per inch, it came with optical image stabilization, and a larger battery.
So, thinking I was getting the "better" device, I went with the iPhone 6 Plus.
It's about more than just the numbers
At first, I thought the iPhone 6 Plus was unwieldy, but after a few weeks, I became quite accustomed to its gargantuan size. Furthermore, in that time, I also felt convinced that I'd made the right iPhone choice.
I was the only member of my immediate family to go with the enormous iPhone 6 Plus. Most of them went with the iPhone 6, and the one who didn't upgrade to an iPhone 6 chose to go with an iPhone 5s because the iPhone 6 was simply "too big."
In the months following my iPhone 6 Plus purchase, I would occasionally use a family member's iPhone 6. I didn't want to admit it, but I was actually extremely fond of how the iPhone 6 felt in the hand. That wasn't enough to feel regret over my iPhone 6 Plus purchase, though.
As time went on, I noticed more and more that the iPhone 6 seemed to have better colors than my iPhone 6 Plus. The blacks were inkier, and the whites looked far more accurate. This wasn't just a case of one cherry-picked iPhone 6 looking better than my iPhone 6 Plus; it was the case with every iPhone 6 I tried out.
Bigger isn't always better
I sold my iPhone 6 Plus and picked up an iPhone 6. Although if I look really closely, I'll notice that the display isn't quite as sharp as the one on my old iPhone 6 Plus, the colors are much better.
This is subjective, but the user interface on my iPhone 6 seems to feel a lot snappier than the one on my iPhone 6 Plus. Perhaps that's because driving a 1334-by-750 pixel display is a lot easier on a mobile graphics processor than trying to render at 2208-by-1242 (and downscaling to 1920-by-1080).
Although I miss some aspects of my iPhone 6 Plus, I'm far happier with the iPhone 6's display, which is a very important part of the smartphone experience for me. The ability to use the device pretty easily with one hand is certainly a bonus, too.
What does this have to do with Apple?
You'll notice many smartphone vendors are trying to push quad-HD smartphone displays, and there is talk of a move to 4K displays at some point in the not-too-distant future. Although these are "easy" marketing points, I believe Apple would be smart to avoid getting into that silly race.
Going forward, I'd be totally cool with having next-generation iPhones stick to more modest resolutions than what their Android competition brings to the table. What I would like to see is a continued focus on improving contrast ratios, color accuracy, brightness, and everything else that contributes to the quality of a display.