You know how Steve Jobs and Apple like to boast
of the iPhone
's ability to function as a "widescreen iPod?" Well, anyone who sat in Moscone Center to witness the holy unveiling surely noticed the screen cropping (letterboxing) that occurred when Steve played Pirates of the Carribean
. That's because the iPhone isn't "widescreen
" as the term is customarily understood outside of the reality distortion field -- it is not a 1.78:1 (16x9) aspect ratio. Rather, the display utilizes a 1.5:1 aspect ratio. That puts the iPhone somewhere in the proprietary zone between the NTSC or PAL television standard 1.33:1 (4x3) and a proper widescreen 1.78:1 (16x9) aspect ratio like that thrown off Apple's new Apple TV
. As demonstrated during the Jobsnote, true widescreen videos can be zoomed to fill the iPhone's screen but only at the expense of cropping the left and right-hand side video. Will this, uh, clarification or other nits
prevent the first batch from selling out? Oh hells no. But at least now you know the truth.