Xcode 6 features resizable device simulators, paving way for iPhones with new screen sizes

“Xcode 6 includes new iOS Simulator features that allow developers to resize the simulated screen for any arbitrary resolution,” Benjamin Mayo writes for 9to5Mac. “9to5Mac first reported this was imminent in May.”

“Although the feature is very temperamental in the first beta, it clearly leads the way to a future with a much more diverse lineup of screen resolutions,” Mayo writes. “This allows developers to test for future iOS devices that do not exist today — such as 4.7 inch and 5.5 inch iPhones for example.”

Read more in the full article here.

[Thanks to MacDailyNews Readers “Fred Mertz” and “Dan K.” for the heads up.]

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  1. The improvement is two-fold. It also allows existing (currently standard) screen sizes to use an “effective” resolution that is different from the “native” resolution. And if the effective resolution can be “any arbitrary resolution” (within reasonable limits), that essentially means resolution independence.

    What makes this feasible is the Retina display and its pixels that are too small to distinguish at typical screen-to-eye distance. When you can’t make out individual pixels, native resolution become meaningless (to the user). Whatever is being displayed will look just as sharp whether the displayed resolution is precisely native, or something else.

    For a current example, on a Mac display that is NOT Retina, you can change the displayed resolution to something that is NOT the native (“best”) setting (it is “scaled”). There is perceivable “fuzziness.” But when the display is Retina, the pixels are so small that it does not matter if the setting is native or scaled. It looks equally sharp to the human eye.

    That is the effect that allows future iOS devices to have a more varied set of screen sizes without causing platform fragmentation. The user does not care about the effective resolution setting, and the software does not need to show those X-by-Y numbers. The user can just use some type of gesture to “zoom” in or out “arbitrarily,” to set the interface elements and text to be most comfortable for that user.

  2. Realizable apps allow for a few things:

    1) new device form factors like big screen iPhones,
    2) resolution scaling so big iPhones can have big type for old folks, and
    3) realizable, split-screen apps for iPad.

    All this with no app fragmentation! Way to go Apple!

    1. Windows apps is the real deal in very near future; apps running in virtual machine able to communicate with new APIs; 64bit code plenty of horse power.

      I can see 2015 we will get apps that can run on multiple say iPhones or iPads or soon mixture of ios and sox devices as if one app running across multiple screens.

    2. The screen size in cars differ greatly. This may be required to test out apps in the new CarPlay systems in many new cars this year. Just because Tim and team didn’t bring up CarPlay (or other appliances in the home) it doesn’t mean it isn’t real!

      Note: I watched the hole keynote and heard nothing about CarPlay. Why?

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