Phone sizes grew drastically in a year, are you tired of 6-inchers?

Phone sizes grew drastically in a year, are you tired of 6-inchers?
In a breath of fresh air, Korean media reported recently that Samsung may break the Galaxy S-line mold, and introduce three S10 versions, and one may be a basic model with flat display closer to the 5" range. One might be a cynic and say that's exactly mimicking Apple's strategy with three 2018 iPhones primed for release, but if these rumors hold water in the end, Samsung may have a veritable hit on its hands.

Look around, do you see any popular compact Androids released in the last year or so? It's a 5.7-incher next to a 6-incher next to a 6"+ behemoth. No amount of bezel-cutting, notch-ing or camera-popping can hide the fact that most flagships released since last spring are hovering around the 6" screen diagonal mark. Granted, the switch to an 18:9 aspect ratio (or thereabouts) makes them more palpable to use than the 16:9 units of yesteryear, but, please, can one get a break from huge phones? Here's a little statistic for you - screen sizes for popular phones from some best-selling Android brands issued 2016-2018.


Quick calculation pegs the increase in the average screen size of the devices listed to go from 5.25" in 2016 to 5.46" in 2017. That's a 4% increase which is in line with the norms in previous years. From 2017 to this year, however, the models grew to the whopping 6.05 inches on average for the popular 2018 models above. That's 11% increase in screen sizes for the last year or so and has never happened before.

Granted, some of the humongous diagonals' footprint is offset by the move to a taller and narrower aspect ratio, but looking at the phones' dimensions, we can easily see that the growth between 2016 and 2018 is gigantic. There is barely a handset that fits well in the palm and can be comfortably operated with one hand anymore, and the trend is moving downmarket as well - the most popular Redmi line of Xiaomi that sells millions upon millions went from 5-inchers straight to 6-inchers, for instance, and, despite the bezel trimming or the narrower aspect ratio, the resulting models are still way larger than their predecessors. 

That is why we were curious to take your opinion on this trend that nobody asked us about, of huge 6-inchers that are in most of the cases uncomfortable to carry and operate. Heck, Apple is going to do the same with this year's iPhones, rumored to start from 5.8 inches, while the largest iPhone ever is said to land at 6.4", and Samsung may have an answer to it with a 6.4" S10+ of its own. Where's that going to end? You probably understand why are we rooting for a rumored basic S10 with a smaller flat screen now, so take your pick, and sound off in the comments.

Are you tired of the 6-inch phones tsunami?

No, as long as the screen-to-body ratio is kept high, I'm fine
48.45%
Yes, good grief, make smaller phones again
51.55%

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58 Comments

1. surethom

Posts: 1610; Member since: Mar 04, 2009

It's the phone width that has gone mad, the S8, s9 & Lg7 are the best normal sized phones.

2. Wickedsamaritan

Posts: 76; Member since: Aug 11, 2017

This remind me of people looking for thin and light ultrabooks that weighs below 2 pounds.. yet they go to strip clubs and want this thick girls with fat asses ... but when it comes to work they are lazy idiots looking for 1 pound work laptop.. please give me a 6.5 inch phone with little to near bezel .. I'm not lazy to use my both hands for my phone.. and I grew up using BlackBerry phones (2hands are better on two boobs)

11. troutsy

Posts: 378; Member since: Feb 17, 2012

Maybe you should sit the next couple of plays out.

3. Sparkxster

Posts: 1176; Member since: Mar 31, 2017

Every smartphone maker should have a compact line of phones.

10. LFCRodrigues

Posts: 57; Member since: May 09, 2014

Yes! Without losing anything (like Google pixel does).

46. Phullofphil

Posts: 1746; Member since: Feb 10, 2009

Only if a small compact phone would sell well. You can’t just make a small phone. There is space restrictions. Especially for small sails numbers

48. deleon629

Posts: 440; Member since: Oct 04, 2014

you got a point. it seems as though nearly every major OEM that put out a compact phone had also released a larger model with a painfully obvious difference in both quality and features. Not that no one wanted smaller phones...No one wanted to look like an idiot leaving a store with the smaller device that had less features for a small difference of what it cost to get the larger showcased on display right next to it.

4. mdedenroth

Posts: 17; Member since: Dec 10, 2016

PA, could you use some proper math please? Comparing a 16:9 phone and 18:9 (or even 18.5:9) by the diagonal simply doesn't make sense.

5. NateDiaz

Posts: 1082; Member since: Mar 03, 2018

If my thumb ain't reaching the corners, it's big.

17. BGChicago

Posts: 222; Member since: Nov 16, 2014

This. And because hand size varies, they should have different size (flagship) phones. Sony Compacts are lacking competition.

34. white_Shadoww

Posts: 16; Member since: Jan 15, 2018

A 5" 16:9 with very minimal bezels would be a pretty small phone. Comparable to XZ1 or XZ2 Compact.

44. BGChicago

Posts: 222; Member since: Nov 16, 2014

That's what I want as well

6. Cat97

Posts: 1765; Member since: Mar 02, 2017

6-inch phones are only here because the Chinese manufacturers just cannot fit their components (especially batteries) inside smaller phones.

7. tedkord

Posts: 17131; Member since: Jun 17, 2009

That's what she said?

8. LFCRodrigues

Posts: 57; Member since: May 09, 2014

I was talking about that yesterday. I have the S8+ and I feel like it is too big. It is a great screen but it feels uncomfortable sometimes. Maybe the S8 is better when it comes to ergonomics but the iPhone X, for me, is the sweet spot (although it has that big notch, it is the greatest in overall size)

9. tedkord

Posts: 17131; Member since: Jun 17, 2009

Doesn't a low screen to body ratio mean big bezels?

12. BGChicago

Posts: 222; Member since: Nov 16, 2014

As of now, this poll shows almost half want smaller phones. I don't expect it to get much different till the med, may be 40/60 compact/large. The reality is however compact phones are only a mere 5% if not even less of produced phones. Sad story.

20. libra89

Posts: 2251; Member since: Apr 15, 2016

It is a sad story. I'm tired of hearing about these phones that sound cool but then they are SO big. I would like an Android phone that is new but a little smaller than the iPhone 7/8 and not as wide. Trying the XZ2 Compact was really nice, I just wish that it worked for me.

27. Fellwalker

Posts: 520; Member since: Apr 04, 2014

I wonder - Have any of them actually bought the size of phone they voted for?

13. BGChicago

Posts: 222; Member since: Nov 16, 2014

Hoping Pixel 3 will be smaller than Pixel 2. If it isn't, F that.

18. libra89

Posts: 2251; Member since: Apr 15, 2016

Me too. I was so sad to learn that the Pixel 2 was noticeably taller than the first Pixel. I had to try it anyway and it didn't work out for me because of the height.

33. white_Shadoww

Posts: 16; Member since: Jan 15, 2018

It won't be. the leaks suggest it has a 5.3" display and judging by the screen protector leaks, I'd say it is 16:9. So, it's gonna be bigger than the Pixel 3.

14. MDave

Posts: 210; Member since: Apr 09, 2015

Nah, I simply went and bought (much) bigger pants.

49. Pabliell

Posts: 179; Member since: Mar 22, 2016

You can't buy bigger hands. And if you can't fully use it with one hand, then it's too big.

50. Pabliell

Posts: 179; Member since: Mar 22, 2016

You can't buy bigger hands. And if you can't fully use it with one hand, then it's too big.

15. medtxa

Posts: 1655; Member since: Jun 02, 2014

It may less comfortable. But can't give up big screen. I use my phone heavily for media and browsing, rarely I watched videos on laptop or TV.

16. Humanoid

Posts: 1226; Member since: Dec 11, 2017

I want 5.5" 16:9 and 14,5 cm tall

21. yalokiy

Posts: 901; Member since: Aug 01, 2016

If you didn't hate the notch, perhaps Sharp Aquos S2 would fit. (and it's 17:9 too, but it's as close as one can get)

19. BLUEBLASTER

Posts: 913; Member since: Feb 23, 2014

My GF tells me 4" is just fine.

22. yalokiy

Posts: 901; Member since: Aug 01, 2016

Perhaps she has very small hands...

* Some comments have been hidden, because they don't meet the discussions rules.

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