Poll results: Would you buy a powerful 4-inch Android phone (an iPhone SE rival)?

Poll results: Would you buy a powerful 4-inch Android phone (an iPhone SE rival)?
The Apple iPhone SE is a pretty unusual smartphone per 2016 standards, being powerful (thanks to Apple's A9 chipset), and yet way smaller than most handsets currently on the market, as it sports a 4-inch display with 640 x 1136 pixels. In the Android world, there's no iPhone SE equivalent, the closest thing to it being Sony's Snapdragon 810-based Xperia Z5 Compact - which is larger anyway, offering a 4.6-inch 720p display.

But what if a reputable company made an iPhone SE rival that ran Android? A 4-inch handset with a high-end processor, top build quality, and other appealing features - all starting at around $400. Would you be interested in buying such an Android smartphone? We were curious to know the answer to this question, so last week we published this poll. We now have the results, and it turns out that, for the majority of those who voted, a 4-inch display is just too small: 1259 voters (60.1%) said that they would not buy an Android-based iPhone SE equivalent.

Of course, there are also users who find a 4-inch screen perfectly adequate for 2016: 836 voters said that they (39.9%) would purchase a powerful 4-inch Android handset. 

If you didn't vote in our poll while it was still active, feel free to answer to the question in the comments section, or share any thoughts that you may have regarding a hypothetical powerful 4-inch Android phone.

Would you buy a powerful 4-inch Android phone?

Yes, a 4-inch screen is enough
No, I need a bigger screen



1. Zackd44

Posts: 35; Member since: Jun 29, 2015

I still use the RAZR M with its 4.3" (qHD) screen which is adequate, if just barely. I would like to upgrade to a 4.6-5.0" but couldn't imagine going smaller.

4. Bm888

Posts: 517; Member since: Jul 06, 2015

I am a phablet guy.. I would only use a 4incher as a backup and secondary handset

18. sgodsell

Posts: 7368; Member since: Mar 16, 2013

4" these days is just too small especially if you don't have the resolution. A 4" HD display maybe okay for some, but since the 4" iPhone SE doesn't even have a HD display, then it sucks. You have to do more scrolling around to view your web pages or view other types of data or images. Everyone forgets that HTC had a 4.7" phone that had a 1920x1080 resolution. If that phone came out years ago, then there is no excuse for a 4" display with such a terrible resolution.

21. TechieXP1969

Posts: 14967; Member since: Sep 25, 2013

iFans will find every excuse in the world to justify it. here is always an excuse. Whether they will be good ones is another story altogether. After making big phones for a few years now, if Samsung had went an made a 4" phone, all the ifans would have been asking WTF is wrong with Samsung. But when Apple does it, it's ok. I think Apple who "thinks" they know what their customers want, should have sent an email to all their customers asking if they would even buy a 4" iPhone again. Because I would think in some markets due to lower pricing, they would buy them and that is where they should be sold. But too release a tiny toy in the USA and Europe? That seems like a very terrible mistake on Apple's part. Without the Steve Jobs traffic light, Apple doesn't know which direction to go. They should just "stop" before they hurt themselves.

28. AlikMalix unregistered

@techie: ...and apple haters will find every excuse in the world to hate it... I know that people just don't care for resolution as long as it's sharp and my 5s is sharp - I rather take performance which iPhone SE excels in. There's a market for a powerful 4" device (not second rate that android manufacturers tried with "mini" moniker. You won't find these people here on PA because we're all just tech nerds,, even though based on poll above - still quite a few. Apple is allowed to sell their devices at any price they want, and you're allowed not to buy it if you think it's too expensive - but there are people that find more value in iOS than android - and that's who will buy it. Android is not for me - as I don't care for customizing fonts and icons. iOS ecosystem and iPhone are powerful and even though not perfect - much better than android offerings - and I'm not the only one that feels that way - why do you have a problem with that. We will change to android when android works for us. I like iOS, I certainly don't think your an idiot just because you prefer Samsung when it does not work for me. Why do you have a problem with people who buy iPhones - they don't care why you or the rest of those in your bandwagon think - the care what works for them better - and it's not android.

31. janis

Posts: 397; Member since: Mar 10, 2014

i think u are so much lost as apple. see price on iphone and check price on this same experia compact, check how much screen u can get on same size of device plus screen on experia looks like from nowdays. end of story.

33. Jimrod

Posts: 1605; Member since: Sep 22, 2014

Ahh, so screen is all that matters? You can get a 50" TV for the same price as most midrange smart phones, carry that around and be the coolest kid on the block!

39. FriendlyFoe09

Posts: 82; Member since: Jan 09, 2012

I am actually considering this phone. I currently own an LG G4 which I bought for the camera as I like to go on hikes. But I am not a fan of LGs UI and the way Android handles music. I use itunes as I am one of the last few people who still buy music. Not everybody wants a big phone, for me its the camera and music. My plan finishes soon. I tried the 5C though was OK the camera felt outdated and the system lagged a bit with the latest iOS updates. If the price is right this phone can keep me in the Apple ecosystem without spending a lot of money. The phone has it all. Its not cheaply made, has updated internals, dependable camera features though it wont beat the G4 for stills and iTunes.

40. FriendlyFoe09

Posts: 82; Member since: Jan 09, 2012

The closest great phone around the 4inch mark would be Sonys xperia compacts. I had the Sony Z1C before it broke and I got the G4 everything about the phone was good but the camera was bad and the Walkman branded player was horrible.

42. Shocky unregistered

Wait, you think everyone who doesn't use iTunes doesn't buy music? Really? Are you stupid?

26. preetmalhotra

Posts: 114; Member since: Apr 27, 2012

Same Bro! Using Note 3 as main driver with Nokia 808 as camera backup! 5.7 + 4 = Bestest thing ever!

34. cheetah2k

Posts: 2256; Member since: Jan 16, 2011

My wife had destroyed so many iphone 4's and 5's and likes smaller screens. I bought her the Z3 compact, then the Z5 compact after that and she's never looked back. Some people prefer smaller screens, but its more about the robustness and IP68 water and dust that keeps her coming back for more - our young kids have not been able to break em! I feel saddened by the fact it looks like Sony has discontinued their compact high end phones. If Samsung produces a high spec S7mini and its IP rated it will be the next phone she gets for sure. IMO Sony seem to be their own worst enemy sometimes, they've lost a customer if there are no more high end compacts in the pipeline...

38. FriendlyFoe09

Posts: 82; Member since: Jan 09, 2012

These websites are the worst places to ask for poll regarding Apple vs Android. majority of people (nerds) who actually visits these site or even actually stop to vote won't be apple users. Apple users don't care about technology enough as to follow posts from tech websites.

2. Finalflash

Posts: 4063; Member since: Jul 23, 2013

I use the Z5c now and even coming from the 5 inch padfone infinity and nexus 5,sometimes this phone feels too small. But it's fine for most everything mostly. Any smaller would be a handicap.

8. SonyXperiaZ3

Posts: 11; Member since: Aug 03, 2015

Me too i have a Z5c aswell coming from a z2 i would probably go bigger now though but for example i think Sony should take inspiration from one of their older devices the ZL (http://m.gsmarena.com/sony_xperia_zl-5203.php ) it has a 5 inch screen and only a 131mm body and Apple has a 4.7 inch screen in a 138mm body. I think manufacturers are forgeting about the bezels and they don't look nich especially in White and I think every Phone should have at least 70%

32. Vrils

Posts: 42; Member since: Sep 17, 2011

i got the Sony Ericsson Xperia RAY which has a 3.3 screen and it served me well for last 4 years. I use it just as a phone, i do not play games...just read mails and some news. Sony Z5C would be a good upgrade but that is an old phone already so i`m looking to buy a 4.5 - 4.8 screen FLAGSHIP phone got 500 EUROS ready but i have NO CHOICE, there is NO PHONE with 4.6 - 4.8 screen and Snapdragon 820 to buy. S7 is just a little too big and expensive hope for HTC 10 MINI PS 4.0 is small but i would consider it depending on screen, processor etc

3. MingLiangChen

Posts: 329; Member since: Jul 06, 2012

Pretty confident edge-to-edge screens can be fit into a small form factor to get the best of both worlds.

5. legiloca

Posts: 1676; Member since: Nov 11, 2014

4 inch is just so not a thing nowadays.. 4.5 inch is the soft spot to be a 'mini' or compact variant

11. tyrionTheWise unregistered

without on-screen keys I might add. A 4.5" phone with on-screen keys is basically a 4-4.2" screen.

12. xperiaZlover

Posts: 202; Member since: Nov 15, 2015

You are right. The onscreen navigation bars take 0.3 inches of the display. The 4.6 screen of the sony becomes 4.3 inch. I don't think it is a good idea to make an onscreen navigation bar highend 4 inch phone. 4.3+ could be fine.but the best place is 4.6 inch. Anyone who has used a Z3/Z5 compact knows this.

16. sgodsell

Posts: 7368; Member since: Mar 16, 2013

But, the on-screen navigation bars also hide away automatically as well for some apps. So on-screen navigation is fine, plus it saves OEMs money.

22. tyrionTheWise unregistered

But in those some apps in which they hide away, you need a swipe and then a tap to use them. It's inconvenience. Plus it only happens in some apps. It's inconsistent experience and I don't like that. It barely saves 2$ per phone since the digitizer is same for screen and capacitive keys.

24. TechieXP1969

Posts: 14967; Member since: Sep 25, 2013

Also, wouldn't screen resolution play a role in the size the keys would be? They don't have to be all that big.

36. tyrionTheWise unregistered

Not sure about that. companies can set dpi values to adjust that and they will be same size.

6. zunaidahmed

Posts: 1183; Member since: Dec 24, 2011

body to surface area ratio is also very important, if the Apple could at least fit a 4.3 screen in than body, it would have been perfect actually. the iPhone 6s could be fitted with a 4.9-5.0 inch screen while the plus would be perfect for 5.7inch (just like note series).

13. ibend

Posts: 6747; Member since: Sep 30, 2014

it could fit 4.5inch... and z5c only slightly bigger but can fit 4.7inch

7. xperian

Posts: 418; Member since: Apr 10, 2014

Using 4.7 now. Couldn't go back to smaller. I will upgrade to 5.2-5.5 when my current phone breaks

9. NexusKoolaid

Posts: 493; Member since: Oct 24, 2011

Ha - I just came across my old Nexus One a few days ago. Next to the 6P I now carry - that phone is puny. I can't imagine going back to anything that size again. If I did go smaller I'd say something around 5 inches would be the sweet spot.

10. jsjammu

Posts: 169; Member since: Nov 13, 2014

Android fans are not isheep. Please don't insult us. :)

14. ibend

Posts: 6747; Member since: Sep 30, 2014

"Android fans are not isheep"?? well.. okay..

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