Mixpanel: One-third of active iPhone users still have 4-inch displays

“The latest data from Mixpanel shows that approximately 32.22% of active iPhone users still have a 4-inch screen,” Joe Rossignol reports for MacRumors. “That is the same screen size as the so-called ‘iPhone 5se’ that Apple is expected to announce at its rumored March 15 event.”

“Apple has released three iPhone models with 4-inch screens since 2013, including the iPhone 5, iPhone 5c, and iPhone 5s,” Rossignol reports. “Apple’s newest 4-inch smartphone, the iPhone 5s, represented just under 20 percent of current iPhones in use, trailed by the iPhone 5 at 7.53 percent and the plastic-backed iPhone 5c at 5.66 percent.”

“In the company’s latest earnings call,” Rossignol reports, “Apple CEO Tim Cook said that 60 percent of older-generation iPhone users have yet to upgrade to the iPhone 6, iPhone 6 Plus, iPhone 6s, or iPhone 6s Plus.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: Those interested in a 4-inch iPhone, take our poll (right column, desktop site) or comment below and let us know which iPhone features are most important to you!


  1. That would be me.

    Love the size and portability of the 4S.

    Juice it up with better specs such as camera stabilization, Apple Pay and other features found in the flagship phones.

    All sizes for all needs … 🙂

    1. Not the 4S. The 5S.

      I have the 5S and I love it to death. I’m sure 3D Touch will mature at some point but right now it looks pretty redundant.

      I hate big phones (I’m 6’3 btw) and couldn’t imagine putting a bigger phone in my pocket.

        1. I love my 4s too. It’s always with me, secure in a front pocket of Levi’s 515 jeans these days—it’s the perfect size for that. Anything bigger would require a back pocket, not ideal for horseback riding, or a bag or lanyard, or shirt pocket. I don’t care to change my wardrobe and accessories to conform to a size fad.

          Devices like the iPhone that are deliberately marketed as lifestyle choices, should take into account diverse lifestyles.

          1. The most ‘magical’ Apple presentation EVER was Steve in January 2007 introducing the industry game changing — mobile computing revolution — iPhone to the world.

            Like the 4S, the first version sported a 3.5 inch screen and Steve assured us it was the PERFECT size.

            That has not changed, IMHO. That said, the 4-inch phone occupies the same desirable range in portability.

            In my NorthFace convertible shorts/pants, echoing your equestrian needs, the 4S size is perfect for a day fly fishing (my diverse lifestyle choice) a pristine stream or pounding pavement to a summer in the city Broadway show.

            I can only hope, Apple fulfills the need for a FULL featured, smaller form factor, iPhone … 🙂

  2. Me too. And I don’t need a bigger screen for my elderly eyes… a reason often given for the supposed wonderfulness of big screens. The convenience of the size outweighs that. NO desire for a bigger phone. Looks like many others think similarly.

      1. Tim said 60% have not upgraded. 32% and 8% is 40%.
        What is the missing 20% ?
        I figured there is some small amount using the 3.5″ screens. My two teenagers because they are cheap but still run iOS 9.

    1. I am simply amazed that after literally hundreds of postings on this site alone from people who prefer smaller screens, there are still people (including MDN takes) who insist that we are just cheapskates who really prefer big screens but choose to lie about it. Tastes and user requirements differ. Not everyone has the same needs. How is that hard to understand?

      1. Agreed.

        The MDN take is surprisingly baffling and for some unexplicable reason a tad condescending.

        As so many fine comments here and on other articles of this type for weeks have shown — whatever the percentage of folks exists, we want a smaller form factor iPhone — FULLY FEATURED (as much as possible given industrial design constraints).

        Apple and MDN — if you value customer feedback — what part of this do you NOT understand? 🙂

    2. Subsidy change had nothing to do with it.

      Under the “subsidy model”, the perceived purchase price for a new iPhone was $200 (base model). Today, it is actually even less — it is free. You can buy an iPhone for $0 upfront. All you have to pay is retail tax (some $50). The rest is spread as an interest-free loan over two years.

      The difference between the old “subsidy” model and the new, “contract-free” model is that under the old one, the price of wireless service was much higher because it included the value of the phone, spread over 24 months. That price was fixed and never went down, even when the contract expired and the phone is paid off. Under the new model, wireless service is much cheaper, as it only includes the service itself. The loan for the phone is a separate line item on the bill, and it goes away when the phone is paid off. Under the old model, you would begin donating free money to your carrier on the first day after your contract expires, until you get a new phone.

      The switch from “subsidy” to “no-contract” was a boon for consumers.

  3. I have an iPhone 5s.  (I was an early adopter of the original iPhone and inline for hours)  I like the 5s hand feel and it fits in ANY pocket as needed (shirt, slacks/jeans, jacket, small holster, …).  I agree that I want full iPhone 7 functionality, especially Apple Pay.  I have relatives with both the iPhone 6s and plus.  They are okay, I’ve used them, but I’m NOT bowled over.  I have an iPad for larger screen uses.  Maybe the larger screen  area has a stronger appeal to Sammy converts. I just want modern functionality in a 4 inch format.

  4. I would like to have the latest hardware, but I’m using an iPhone 5S. I’ve had an iPhone since day one. I prefer the original 3.5″ screen size, but can tolerate the 4″ screen. I stopped upgrading annually when the iPhone 6 came out. AAPL will regain my annual upgrade business with each iPhone update with a screen 4″ or less. The bigger sizes are undesirable to me.

    1. I forgot to add that I bought the iPhone 6 as soon as it was released but returned it after giving it a week to see if I’d get used to it. It’s just too big for my likes, and I use my phone a lot (fwiw, at least a few hours each day, mostly reading news and looking at stocks and their charts).

  5. For years Apple told us 4″ was the best size. I bought that idea. If you tell the installed base that 4″ is the best size, and then you don’t make a 4″ phone, you should not be surprised if people don’t upgrade.

    I cannot believe that this would come as a surprise to Mr. Cook. Apparently, though, it did. And it should not be the “5se”, like we are second class citizens. It is the 6 mini or 6 air or 6 nano or something. First class, best size, just like you told us it would be.

    This is not rocket science.

  6. At first when I started using my new iPhone 6s Plus it seemed a little ackward. Now I couldn’t imagine going back to my tiny screen iPhone 5s. The larger screen makes playing games, taking pictures and editing photos way better.

    But I’m glad Apple is upgrading its 4inchers because everyone is different and not everyone can handle 6inches!

  7. I like my 5s because it fits in my shirt pocket. I’m not getting anything bigger as it would be a nuisance to carrying around. I read books on the 5s just fine. Watch Premier League soccer games. And plenty of other stuff. Never use it to make phone calls. If Apple only made one too big for my pocket I’m not getting it.

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