Apple

Big-screen iPhone 6 and 6 Plus owners use their iPads much less than smaller screen iPhone users

Research released by read-later app Pocket suggests that iPad use drops significantly for owners of the larger iPhones.

iPhone vs. iPad use

For iPad owners who also own an iPhone with a 4-inch screen, like the iPhone 5 and 5s, some 55% of their content was consumed on their iPhones, according to data shared by Pocket, an app that saves articles and other written content to be read at a more convenient time. 45% was read on the iPad, a fairly even split between the two devices.

This split is close to 50/50, with the iPhone likely preferred when portability is at a premium, and the iPad used when at home or for longer form content.

However, that all changed, Pocket says, when the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus were released earlier this year.

The company has released some empirical evidence that iPhone users with larger screens use their iPad less than those with smaller screens. This is something that I've noticed myself — I've barely touched my iPad mini since I got my iPhone 6 Plus. For many tasks, the 6 Plus' screen is more than adequate, especially for basic web browsing, email, and other general use activities.

iPhone 6 owners use their phone for 72% of Pocket reading, while iPhone 6 Plus users — with their larger screen — use their smartphone for 80% of reading, a significant increase from the 55% that Pocket saw from iPhone 5 users.

But it's not just the tablet split that Pocket has discovered. Users who owned both an iPhone 6 and an iPad began reading 33% more articles inside Pocket than they did with a smaller-screened phone, while iPhone 6 Plus owners opened 65% more items than previously.

Correspondingly, iPad use dropped significantly, with 6 Plus owners using their iPads a third less both during the week and the weekend. However, iPads are still the medium of choice, Pocket says, around 9:00 PM for bedtime reading.

Most analyst research has suggested that the iPhone 6 remains significantly more popular than the 6 Plus, something to be expected since the Plus is more expensive, not as available due to supply constraints, and the fact that it's simply gigantic.

I have a 6 Plus and my wife has an iPhone 6. I can confidently say that, for most consumers, the iPhone 6 is the preferable option to the larger 6 Plus. This is especially true if you already have an iPad, since the larger screen of the 6 Plus will just have you using the iPad less and less.

If you have a new iPhone 6 or 6 Plus, have you found yourself using your iPad less? Let us know in the comments below.

About Jordan Golson

Jordan Golson is an Apple Columnist for TechRepublic. He also writes about technology and automobiles for WIRED and MacRumors. He has worked for Apple Retail twice and has been writing about technology since 2007.

Editor's Picks

Free Newsletters, In your Inbox