Better productivity excuse for more tech bling? Bigger displays help you work better say Apple

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New research sponsored by Apple (you know, they make those massive cinema displays) has concluded that workers are more productive when using 30 inch monitors than 17 or 19 inch ones, and so presumably employers should rush out and order a load of large displays so that people can do tasks more quickly.

Apparently, workers can be up to 65% more efficient just because they’re using a bigger display, according to Paris-based Pfeiffer Consulting. Benchmark tests included copying Excel spreadsheet cells and copying and pasting images. Comparisons were made between a 30 inch Apple display at a native resolution of 2560×1600 compared to a 17 inch Samsung monitor running at 1280×1024.

Other people disagree, saying the productivity improvement is overrated, and that having two monitors side by side would lead to faster working patterns. And at the end of the day, you can’t put down improved working simply to your computer, even if you use it for the majority of your job. Also, most general office workers are not going to be playing (sorry, working) with large Photoshop images all day.

Disagreeing experts say that productivity gains might only be around 5%.

I prefer having two monitors over one larger one, particularly as they’re both widescreen. I still get a lot of screen real estate to work on. What’s your ideal monitor setup?

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Andy Merrett