Should Android phones be embracing the notch?

Asus already did it, but LG, Huawei, OnePlus, Oppo, and plenty of other less known Android warriors are reported to have phones in the works that flaunt a top bezel cutout to house the front camera, earpiece and other paraphernalia, in an Essential Phone, or, the more likely inspiration - an iPhone X notch style. Should Android phones be embracing the notch, though?

Copycat legalities aside, the "notch" allows a manufacturer to boast extremely high screen-to-body ratios. The new Asus Zenfone 5 boasts 83.69% of it in our benchmark calculations, which is a bit higher than the iPhone X's 82.35%, as the Zenfone has narrower notch, and still, the Galaxy S9, which sports an oldfashioned uninterrupted, but very thin top bezel, beats them both with 84.36%, which only gives way to the Essential Phone's 84.85%, but this one has the most minimalistic "notch" of them all.

Thus, without further ado, our question is should Android phones follow in Apple's footsteps, and embrace the notch to reach higher screen-to-body ratios, yet letterbox videos or provide unsightly scene in full-screen apps, or should they be following in the footsteps of Samsung, or maybe Xiaomi with its Mi Mix series, trying to trim the bezels all around, yet abstaining from cutouts and other general patchwork. Pick your poison, and tell us what you think in the comments.

Should Android phones be embracing the notch?

NOtch on my watch!
Notch you worry, it gives the best screen-to-body ratios
Whatever, everyone copies everyone



2. thetruthhasbeenspoken

Posts: 83; Member since: May 02, 2017

Why is PhoneArena hiding my comments? bias much

7. sgodsell

Posts: 7451; Member since: Mar 16, 2013

The thing is with Android some OEMs will implement this notch. But just like we saw from MWC there were some Android smartphones that will have a notch, and currently the vast majority still do not have a notch. This has always been Android, especially when thousands of models arrive each year. In reality a notch really brings nothing to the table. As a matter of fact, Apples notch is the worst, because it gives you the least amount of information at the top, especially when you have to swipe down from the top to see the battery percentage. Plus Apple is FORCING it's developers to implement the notch in their apps. That is just wrong. But hey that is Apple for you, the dictatorship platform. There was one smartphone that was shown off that had 99% screen where the front facing camera popped out. Now that was cool, and you can't get better than 99%.

12. AVVA1

Posts: 228; Member since: Aug 01, 2017

Android is an open source so it cant be helped if some OEMs will implement notch as well. Android community likes variety right? There might be phone brands that support headphone Jack some dont others will have notch some dont some with micro sd some dont some with dual camera and some dont. You can't just assume android will stay the same, market do change so they need to react with the market as well. If you dont like notch then go with other brands. You assumed that Apple notch brings nothing to the table how are you supposed to put all the sensors used for face id plus the earpiece/speaker then? Forcing? It may not be the right term and way too harsh but maybe they are more strict with their protocol, if Apple isnt strict to implement their app design with notch in mind then Apps on Apple store would look inconsistent some with black bars and others without and it would affect the user experience of a user using it. You assuming it is wrong and Apple being 'dictatorship platform' is stupid. Good for us that some brands are pushing the boundaries for true bezeless phone.

37. sgodsell

Posts: 7451; Member since: Mar 16, 2013

Apple FORCING it's developers to support the notch is the right term. Especially when your app will be rejected if it doesn't support the iPhone X notch. You like to use other words like Apple is strick. However you want to sugar coat it, then call it whatever you want. But let's get real, if the app is rejected for not supporting the notch. Then isn't that like forcing you to support it? "You assumed that Apples notch brings nothing to the table how are you supposed to put all the sensors used for face id plus the earpiece/speaker then? " Really you actually asked that stupid question. First of all what does the notch bring to the table? Other than being a gimmick in my eyes, then please tell everyone here what Apples notch brings to the table. Also Apple could have said let's just make the screen straight across the top. Problem solved. Wasn't that real easy. Instead Apples notch only leaves a quarter of the screen space at the top which is then split in two. Therefore Apples implementation is useless. Even smartphones like the essential only have a tiny cutout for the camera. With most of the top left for actual display usage. But the worst part is actually designing apps to use that tiny space on either side, and with Apple forcing, or sorry being restrictive, and only allowing new apps on their store, which must support that notch. Then that is crap. So in reality Apples notch is more gimmick than actually being useful. But please do enlighten everyone here what Apples notch brings to the table.

60. AVVA1

Posts: 228; Member since: Aug 01, 2017

Fine lets get real Are you going to take the risk to be not consistent with your app design if you werent apple? (Well clearly youre not based the way you react) As Apple known for being 'forceful' for their consistency in user experience? This the reason why apps on Apple Store is more refined than on Playstore which you might notch see. What brings the notch on the table? Well a freaking notch with sensors for face id proximity sensor camera and earpiece. Dumbass. And also branding, Apple loves to differentiate their devices. Previously Apple's home button touch id is their clear differentiator from other devices which makes the cutout (eyesore it maybe to some/most people) take that piece. Yes, they could somehow go with black bars on top but they didnt to differentiate their products. Yes its an eyesore (including myself but I get used to it) though for sure they had their reasons to go with notch knowing the apple had lots of test devices used which they did internally in their R&D In regards with essential that phone has a cutout for only the camera that makes it clearly understandable why it has a very narrow notch. Are you an app designer to actually dictate that it is worst? Other OEMs are now embracing the notch even google next android P will support the infamous cutout (The Notch) Then again its gimmick for your eyes I cant deal with that. Dude read my comment are you stupid I did wrote what is notch for. I guess you missed it because your head couldnt be more receptive with the idea. Lol.

65. Invokana

Posts: 4; Member since: Mar 06, 2018

"You assumed that Apple notch brings nothing to the table how are you supposed to put all the sensors used for face id plus the earpiece/speaker then?” Huh? Maybe just like how they used to do it, without the notch for eg...? ie you can put all the sensors and stuff with or without a notch. However, I don't disagree with you about Apple trying to differentiate themselves from the others. It's just that your statement made it sound like the notch is essential but it is not...

49. TheOracle1

Posts: 2340; Member since: May 04, 2015

Wait a minute. My comment was removed on how the usable screen to body ratio of the iPhone X and any other phone with a notch should be measured. The comment I responded to that said the same thing was removed too. Neither were offensive, just stating the fact that the iPhone X only has a 5.5 inch screen in practice and the screen to body ratio should be measured accordingly. These moderators are making a fool of this site.

28. HugoBarraCyanogenmod

Posts: 1412; Member since: Jul 06, 2014

Apple make notch for purpose.

57. Klinton

Posts: 1409; Member since: Oct 24, 2016

What ''purpose''??? LOL To lie that the iPhone X is 5.8'' display??? LOL BTW, I HAVE NOTING AGAINST THE NOTCH, if: If there is always besides the notch a black stripe, to look like a small whole bezel on the top.. And nothing there but few icons- by my choice. And if the notch is never shown on the videos, pictures, apps or anything else. Only whole thin bezel on the top, with few useful icons all the time. Then it could be very useful feature. That's why I didn't vote here.

58. Klinton

Posts: 1409; Member since: Oct 24, 2016

If this what I explained , is on my next Note, - I will be pleased.

59. Dingy_cellar_dweller

Posts: 339; Member since: Mar 16, 2013

They can keep there top notch, it looks cheap.

47. AxelFoley unregistered

Talk to Piyath, he can help you find a lawyer to prosecute the web site for violating your first amendment rights.

3. thetruthhasbeenspoken

Posts: 83; Member since: May 02, 2017

The notch is ugly! now post the articles from real authorities stating how the s9 has the best display and camera on a phone

4. DonovanCho

Posts: 10; Member since: Aug 18, 2015

The notch is only acceptable if it looks like the Essential PH-1

17. Shadocx4

Posts: 134; Member since: Oct 20, 2014

I prefer the Xiaomi Mi Mix 2s notch :)

25. tedkord

Posts: 17415; Member since: Jun 17, 2009

No that's even worse looking.

41. TechSceptic

Posts: 1156; Member since: Feb 05, 2018

No, it's not. It's a lot less interfering, as it doesn't ruin the natural shape of the display as much, as the screen real estate that's blacked out is a lot less on the Essential phone compared to the Iphone X. The Essential phone did the notch much better than the Iphone X.

43. midan

Posts: 3013; Member since: Oct 09, 2017

You clearly don't have visual eye at all. Essential notch look very bad and doesn't fit to phone design at all. With X the notch have same lines than phone and screen itself and it looks very smooth.

48. TechSceptic

Posts: 1156; Member since: Feb 05, 2018

You're the one that is clearly looking at everything through your deluded Apple glasses. The Essential notch is much better done, but from a practicaly and aesthetic viewpoint. The Essential notch is considerably smaller than the Iphone X's notch, which means that the Essential phone can nearly display as much information in the tray as a normal screen, while the Iphone X can't even display the battery percentage, as there isn't room for it. Furthermore, the Essential phone actually blocks a lot less content on the screen, as the notch is smaller, which means you get to view more of your content, and it's less of an interruption of the content. Lastly, as the Essential phone notch is smaller, it also means that the Essential phone notch provides a much better screen-to-body ratio. The Essential phone has a screen-to-body ratio of 84.85 % while the Iphone X only has a screen-to-body ratio of 82.35 %. That's quite pathetic for a phone that utilizes a notch in order to increase the screen-to-body ratio, as phones that don't interrupt your content with a notch has achieved substantially higher screen-to-body ratios, such as the S8 & S9 (84.26 %). If you're going to have a notch, then the Essential style notch is superior. I would still prefer a phone without a notch, so that my display isn't interupted by an area which blacks out content and therefore the display isn't even capable of showing things such as battery percentage.

61. ChicagoBorn

Posts: 101; Member since: Jan 24, 2018

Nobody reads your rambles.

63. TechSceptic

Posts: 1156; Member since: Feb 05, 2018

I do apologize if they're above your level. Once you hit primary school you should be used to reading texts of that length. I'm looking forward to that day, so that you can also participate with noteworthy contributions. Instead of eloquently explaining myself and my argument i could try to dumb it down for you, even tho it would be inaccurate. Let me try: "ESSENTIAL NOTCH GOOD WAY, IPHONE NOTCH BAD WAY" Do you understand it now?

5. JimmieCrakCorn

Posts: 143; Member since: Nov 20, 2017

People who buy notched phones are morons!

6. RebelwithoutaClue unregistered

That's a hard no for me. Any smartphone that has a notch, will immediately go off my want list, no matter how good the rest is. The only possible exception would be a notch as seen in the concept picture of the Mi Mix 2s. That's the only one I could live with if I had no other choice.

8. cmdacos

Posts: 4265; Member since: Nov 01, 2016

If a company can't design a phone to be esthetically and functionally pleasing, then I'm not wasting my money. Even a small cyclops notch as in the essential who pioneered this movement is a deterrent for me. I don't want virtual bezels or a Cyclops /unibrow notch to impeded full screen media/ games if it's not necessary.

9. Podrick

Posts: 1285; Member since: Aug 19, 2015

God no! f**k you Apple for starting this trend and most of all, f**k you sheep OEMs for blindly following this BS trend.

22. bucknassty

Posts: 1353; Member since: Mar 24, 2017

didnt essential drop before iphonex?

35. Podrick

Posts: 1285; Member since: Aug 19, 2015

The sheep OEMs could care less about Essential. You can discredit Apple how much you want but trend gets started by big names like Apple or Samsung not a less known and new company like Essential. Small/medium companies gets followed only when the product is revolutionary and highly profitable.

10. TerryD

Posts: 553; Member since: May 09, 2017

The notch is a workaround for a problem and a bad one at that. No one likes the notch. no one can say that it enhances the phones experience. It is tolerated at best.

13. jove39

Posts: 2147; Member since: Oct 18, 2011


14. dnomadic

Posts: 424; Member since: Feb 20, 2015

No notch for me.... However, I also said no headphone jack no purchase!! ( I own a pixel 2 Xl) Prefer no notch, but I guess if u are with a carrier that offers little variety you will follow trends..

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

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