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Poll results: How big is big enough (displays)

Posted: , by Chris P.

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Poll results: How big is big enough (displays)
Well, that's it, folks -- the poll results are in, and the community has spoken. 

When we set out to gauge how preferences have changed in the past two and a half years, we kind of expected to see a sharp difference. After all, and with the exception of Apple, diagonals measuring between 4.7'' and 5'' have become standard. Whether such a massive change is the result of consumer preferences, or a push from handset manufacturers, remains an exceedingly interesting topic for debate for us, but one best left for another day.

But just how massive of a change are we talking here? Well, two and a half years ago, nearly 35% of voters said they prefer smartphones with screens less than 3.99''. The results today show a telling difference -- a measly 1.19% of us would settle for something as compact. In fact, nearly 75% of the 2011 poll respondents wouldn't even settle for something bigger than 4.3''. In contrast, and even though the poll options are not layered in the same manner, it wouldn't be a stretch to say that the opposite is now true -- at least 83% of you won't pick up anything smaller than that. Also, nearly 18% of us are now officially phablet users. What's more, if we categorize phablets as anything above 5.3'', then that 18% is likely beyond 20%, as at least some of those who chose the 5'' to 5.49'' bracket will get tagged along. 

So what do all these numbers tell us? We'd like to explore that in a follow up to this post, but here are a few pointers. For starters, and even though this is not set in stone, one could say that we do not seem to have bumped into a fundamental physical limit just yet, though you could say we're getting closer. So do we expect, upon another revision of the topic a few years down the road, to get a similar reading? We feel it's quite unlikely, as these bumps, like most anything in life, suffer the fate of diminishing returns. That being said, there's no telling what the tech giants may come up. If anything, foldable displays are a little more than fiction nowadays, and those could certainly introduce yet another, even more massive change.

Phonearena polls
sort by
(June 2011) What is the perfect smartphone display size for you?
3.09%
123 votes
(123 votes) Less than 3.5 inches – The smaller, the better. Navigation is easy and the smartphone fits nicely in the smallest of pockets.
31.51%
1253 votes
(1253 votes) Between 3.5 inches and 3.99 inches – Small enough to use with ease, yet big enough to read fine text.
40.54%
1612 votes
(1612 votes) Between 4.0 inches and 4.29 inches – The extra real estate proves useful when viewing photos and videos.
24.85%
988 votes
(988 votes) 4.3 inches and above – No display is too big for my hands.

3976 votes

Phonearena polls
sort by
(January 2014) What is the perfect smartphone display size for you?
1.19%
49 votes
(49 votes) 3.99'' and under
15.53%
640 votes
(640 votes) 4'' to 4.49''
37.55%
1547 votes
(1547 votes) 4.5'' to 4.99''
27.77%
1144 votes
(1144 votes) 5'' to 5.49''
12.4%
511 votes
(511 votes) 5.5'' to 5.99''
5.56%
229 votes
(229 votes) 6'' and above

4120 votes

30 Comments
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posted on 17 Jan 2014, 02:12 10

1. emadshiny (Posts: 1127; Member since: 05 Dec 2012)


This is how tech giants change our taste and way of thinking.

posted on 17 Jan 2014, 02:14 2

3. tech2 (Posts: 1739; Member since: 26 Oct 2012)


Its not tech giants, its how these surveys are made. Read my comment #2

posted on 17 Jan 2014, 02:25 1

6. emadshiny (Posts: 1127; Member since: 05 Dec 2012)


That is exactly what i said; you cant deny the influence of these trends upon the minds of users. Just take a look at Note series as a major example.

posted on 17 Jan 2014, 04:23 2

14. AppleHateBoy (unregistered)


Well, once we reach the physical limits of phone design, I would choose 5" to 5.49". As of right now, 4.5" to 4.99" it is. I've used the Note 2. It's awesome. But it's wayy tooo big. 5" 16:9 display with as small bezels as possible is ideal for me.

posted on 17 Jan 2014, 06:22

17. rossumentum (Posts: 46; Member since: 15 Aug 2013)


it isn't based on their thinking it is based on user preferences... We all want larger screens to they will continue to make them. This guy knows nothing about business thinking we buy things we don't want just because a manufacturer says so. I hope your arn't so dumb or close minded to think this.

posted on 17 Jan 2014, 02:12 5

2. tech2 (Posts: 1739; Member since: 26 Oct 2012)


This recent survey seems more credible since its not influenced by words.

For e.g. InJune 2011 polls, against 4.3 they say 'No display is too big for my hands'. That statement right there influences poll participants that theirs hands are too big and thereby are less likely to chose them.

Also, 4.0-4.29 - statement projects itself as the ideal size.

No offence intended but just something to keep in mind when creating a bias-free poll (which is a very difficult task in itself)

posted on 17 Jan 2014, 02:15

4. itsdeepak4u2000 (Posts: 2288; Member since: 03 Nov 2012)


Hahaha... As time progresses, these things happens but now I don't think so that people will like more bigger displays and I think it would be limited to 4.5" - 5.99".

Sammy created this trend with the Note. 4.7" - 5.2" should be perfectly fine IMO.

posted on 17 Jan 2014, 02:16 1

5. byazatt (Posts: 159; Member since: 26 Oct 2012)


less than 5" is too small for me

posted on 17 Jan 2014, 02:33 16

7. freebee269 (Posts: 516; Member since: 10 Aug 2012)


That's what she said.

posted on 17 Jan 2014, 02:56 1

8. Max_Boost (Posts: 46; Member since: 22 Sep 2012)


Hahaha

posted on 17 Jan 2014, 07:42 4

23. akki20892 (Posts: 3230; Member since: 04 Feb 2013)


so she like Nexus 7

posted on 17 Jan 2014, 02:59 1

9. androiphone20 (Posts: 1391; Member since: 10 Jul 2013)


I have no problem with a 4" display and I am willing to go as far up as 4.99 and that's it. My tablet would have to take up the rest, NO in-between

posted on 17 Jan 2014, 03:44

10. kaikuheadhunterz (Posts: 683; Member since: 18 Jul 2013)


I'm okay with any display size, as long as performance can keep up with it

posted on 17 Jan 2014, 03:57 3

11. alterecho (Posts: 1051; Member since: 23 Feb 2012)


Thats an amazing comparison of data from polls over a long duration. Great job, Phonearena.

posted on 17 Jan 2014, 06:25 3

21. rossumentum (Posts: 46; Member since: 15 Aug 2013)


definitely! phone arena needs to do this again in 2 years and show the results of all 3 polls then. I'm guessing the most popular size then will be 5.5" to 5.99"

posted on 17 Jan 2014, 04:03 3

12. tedkord (Posts: 4243; Member since: 17 Jun 2009)


My friend at work just went from the iPhone to the Note 3. His biggest concern was size, but he's really happy with it. He used to say the GS3 was too big. People only think they can't use a bigger screen until they actually use one.

posted on 17 Jan 2014, 06:24

18. rossumentum (Posts: 46; Member since: 15 Aug 2013)


exactly what I have been telling everyone

posted on 17 Jan 2014, 04:22 1

13. ianneo (Posts: 14; Member since: 15 Dec 2013)


I just bought a Galaxy Mega 6.3 and for me its perfect IMO. Really easy to get used to.

posted on 17 Jan 2014, 05:44 2

15. loveHEAVYMETAL (unregistered)


current using a 5.3" device(lenovo s920,bezel quite big haha,still slightly bigger than 5.5" lg g pro...),can easily operates with one hand, every thing below 6" is ok if the bezel is slim enough, 4" is too small(cough... iphone caugh....)

posted on 17 Jan 2014, 06:09 1

16. Amir1 (Posts: 240; Member since: 20 Aug 2013)


5.2"-6.4".

posted on 17 Jan 2014, 06:25

19. rossumentum (Posts: 46; Member since: 15 Aug 2013)


i believe 5.5" to 6.4" will be the end and final sizes that phones become and are purchased.

posted on 17 Jan 2014, 06:25

20. surethom (Posts: 227; Member since: 04 Mar 2009)


The majority prefer 4.5'' to 4.99'' so why are most companies launching flagship phone in 5.2" or bigger only!!!! a phone with a screen zise over 4.9 is no longer 1 hand friendly & that will never change.

posted on 17 Jan 2014, 06:27

22. rossumentum (Posts: 46; Member since: 15 Aug 2013)


because it is continuing to increase and change over time. future is 5.5 to 6.4 inch screens. if you can't see that you are just as dumb as people in 2011 that though 3.5 to 4.0 inch screens were the future. Look at the trends of the polls. If you are this bad at looking forward and predicting the future i would hate to see how you have done in the stock market

posted on 17 Jan 2014, 08:04 1

24. MarkArigayo (Posts: 237; Member since: 18 Dec 2013)


For me somewhere between 5.2 and 6.0 inch. The thinner the bezel, the better it would be.

posted on 17 Jan 2014, 09:53 1

25. adecvat (Posts: 112; Member since: 15 Nov 2013)


Bored of my 5.5". My next device will be less than 4.5"

posted on 17 Jan 2014, 10:47

26. Martin_Cooper (Posts: 363; Member since: 30 Jul 2013)


Let me remind you that human beings didnt evolve in these two years so that thier fingers are suddenly bigger. Its just pure marketing and brainwashing for people to think anything above 5" is normal and ok to be a smartphone. Unless your hands are big which in most cases arent.

posted on 17 Jan 2014, 11:43

27. kindlefireowner (Posts: 328; Member since: 05 Dec 2011)


I still think the Samsung S3 was the perfect size.

posted on 17 Jan 2014, 11:58

28. DontHateOnS60 (Posts: 820; Member since: 20 Apr 2009)


"But just how massive of a change are we talking here? Well, two and a half years ago, nearly 35% of voters said they prefer smartphones with screens less than 3.99''."

Nice spin, and 65% preferred something 4" or bigger back then. Its amazing what happens to the market when companies push the boundaries of screen size.

posted on 17 Jan 2014, 17:06

29. darkkjedii (Posts: 10056; Member since: 05 Feb 2011)


I'm with 4.99/5.0

posted on 17 Jan 2014, 21:00

30. Neo_Huang (Posts: 270; Member since: 06 Dec 2013)


6 inch for me. (Vivo Xplay 3s for the win)

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