Who designs the best looking smartphones?

Look, it is hard to judge design as it is sometimes so subjective, but there seem to be some general agreement on what’s good and what’s not. And the just unveiled HTC One has pretty much swept us away with its refined aluminum unibody, carefully chamfered edges and thin profile. Slick looks.

But you cannot deny it also looks very similar to the iPhone 5 in its aluminum aesthetic.

Then we have the gorgeous glass Sony Xperia Z that is not just beautiful but also practical, dust and water resistant.

On the other side of the fence are Samsung’s devices, a uniform bunch with a soft, glazed polycarbonate plastic that feels great to hold, but does not necessarily have the same solid feeling.

And finally, there is Nokia, with its colorful plastic Lumia smartphones that are fun with their vibrant reds, yellows and blues. But just as Samsung, Nokia is on the side of the fence preferring plastic to the intricacies of aluminum.

Apple iPhone 5

Apple iPhone 5

Dimensions

4.87 x 2.31 x 0.3 inches

123.8 x 58.6 x 7.6 mm

Weight

3.95 oz (112 g)

Sony Xperia Z

Sony Xperia Z

Dimensions

5.47 x 2.8 x 0.31 inches

139 x 71 x 7.9 mm

Weight

5.15 oz (146 g)

Samsung Galaxy S III

Samsung Galaxy S III

Dimensions

5.38 x 2.78 x 0.34 inches

136.6 x 70.6 x 8.6 mm

Weight

4.69 oz (133 g)

Nokia Lumia 920

Nokia Lumia 920

Dimensions

5.13 x 2.79 x 0.42 inches

130.3 x 70.8 x 10.7 mm

Weight

6.53 oz (185 g)

Apple iPhone 5

Apple iPhone 5

Dimensions

4.87 x 2.31 x 0.3 inches

123.8 x 58.6 x 7.6 mm

Weight

3.95 oz (112 g)

Sony Xperia Z

Sony Xperia Z

Dimensions

5.47 x 2.8 x 0.31 inches

139 x 71 x 7.9 mm

Weight

5.15 oz (146 g)

Samsung Galaxy S III

Samsung Galaxy S III

Dimensions

5.38 x 2.78 x 0.34 inches

136.6 x 70.6 x 8.6 mm

Weight

4.69 oz (133 g)

Nokia Lumia 920

Nokia Lumia 920

Dimensions

5.13 x 2.79 x 0.42 inches

130.3 x 70.8 x 10.7 mm

Weight

6.53 oz (185 g)

To see the phones in real size or compare them with other models, visit our Visual Phone Size Comparison page



We have also added LG and BlackBerry with their less consistent designs, but we’d rely on you to justify your choice in the comments, if you pick them.

Enough with the introduction, though. It’s time to vote - who has the best smartphone designs? Why? Would you vote for a phone maker for just one phone, or do you value consistency? Does copying and stealing count, and what is good design? Let's kick off this discussion with your thoughts in the comments right below.

[poll id="198"]

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196 Comments

199. TheTruthSquad

Posts: 9; Member since: Dec 31, 2012

Whereis the OPPO? If it had 4GLTE it would be the most popular phone in the world and would win the design contest hands down. And, why is Apple even in the list?

196. beefalo

Posts: 16; Member since: Nov 10, 2011

1) Apple 2) HTC 3) Motorola 4) Sony 5) Nokia 6) LG 7) Samsung

198. serge327

Posts: 80; Member since: Aug 27, 2012

1) SONY 2) Apple 3) HTC 4) Nokia 5) Motorola 6) LG 7) Samsung

195. Dan9999

Posts: 4; Member since: Mar 06, 2013

After looking at the Nokia phone at different stores I can see why people would vote for it, however it is unfortunate that MS has ruined Nokia's market share. HTC is coming to take over the top spot with their new phone.

194. Mfa901

Posts: 291; Member since: Jul 14, 2012

From this article the memories of Nokia e6,e7,n8,n95,lumia 800,c7 became fresh

192. sbw44

Posts: 433; Member since: Dec 04, 2012

So when is phonearena going to announce the winner of this pole? Or they disappointed Nokia won?

189. mokhabadi

Posts: 7; Member since: Feb 24, 2012

nokia

188. nbannis

Posts: 13; Member since: Dec 17, 2010

I dont know why sony is number one. The Z was pretty nice looking but the One looks like it took much longer to design with a real attention to detail. Again, i'm not saying the Z doesnt have detail but the One looks better. Plus, Sony, only now, has begun to increase the design level of there phones. Before the Z,all Sony's literally had the same design which ,at first ,looked nice but got stale real quickly. HTC's phones were always attractive!

187. donfem

Posts: 708; Member since: Mar 30, 2011

Let us all vote for Apple... So that we all could be cool... :)

186. NokiaFTW

Posts: 2072; Member since: Oct 24, 2012

Sony 22 % ?!? Really ?!?

184. yahoo29

Posts: 71; Member since: Sep 15, 2012

And for me Nokia Lumia is the best looking phones and when you take it out in your pocket evrybody looks at it >.

185. jerian01

Posts: 5; Member since: Jul 15, 2012

they look at it because of the colors not because of the design...:-)

183. yahoo29

Posts: 71; Member since: Sep 15, 2012

LG didn't design nexus 4 , google did designing nexus 4 , and all nexus devices was design by google and the manufacturer will just help google of what will be inside the phone.

182. jerian01

Posts: 5; Member since: Jul 15, 2012

on the practical side I would prefer samsung line, but I always love the iconic design of Iphones...I both have samsung galaxy note II and Iphone 4s but I wont worry dropping my Note because its casing is very user replaceable and at a cheaper value than the iphones...I dropped my Iphone once and guess what, I preferred buying a new Iphone than replacing the case...Nokia's design is undoubtly pretty specially the new Lumia 620 and lumia 800...but it will look like a toy if you place it side by side with my new Iphone 5...peace!My vote goes to apple...apple's designs is for all ages.

181. marklugtu1302

Posts: 15; Member since: Aug 29, 2012

Now this is very disappointing.. Motorola must be in the conversation and win all the design aspects of all the categories.. come on guys.. Kevlar back, aluminum body with nano coating and gorilla glass.. best built phone with the best skin in all android phones...

180. nogetch

Posts: 11; Member since: Feb 23, 2013

Who manufactured the Worlds First Touch Smart Phone's ? Who manufactured the First Android Phone ? Who manufactured the First Microsoft Powered Phone ? Who manufactured the First Microsoft 3G Phone ? Who was the ODM of Palm, Star O2, iMate and iPAQ ? Who introduced S-Pen like Touch Screen stylus first into a tablet ? Who manufactured the First 4G Phone ? Who manufactured the First Full HD Phone ? The only Smart Phone Manufacturer to cross the 400 and even 450 PPI mark ? The first Full Metal Phone in the Universe ? etc etc..... The only Answer is HTC !!!! Still people say, HTC copies !!!! WTF ?????

175. akashssw

Posts: 1; Member since: Oct 13, 2012

htc makes realy nice phones and thats why i switched from samsung s3 to htc butterfly :D and super happy with the change !!

174. Altair

Posts: 367; Member since: Feb 02, 2012

The thing is, that without question recent Nokia devices are the best designed and durable cute little devices. Nokia is the one who spends a lot of money on R&D and it shows out. HTC one has good desig as well. The main difference is, that it is NOT HTC design. It is direct Apple rip off, like material choices are. This makes HTC product unrelevant. Poor HTC has tryed everything in past couple years and failed. Now it tryes to imitate Samsung, yet another copycat. HTC tryes to play the same game like samsuck. Copy everything that has success and take care of patent lawsuit case later. They hope that device success and they can pay the bill later. Now they just rip offs wverthing that is cool. Ie. Apple design, windows tiles ( blink feed), and Nokia pureview & ois. Shame on you HTC, dont you get it that western countries still have people who respect originality, respect of laws and other properties. Then there are few rogue mindednpeople who buysvthis crap...

172. TalkingTechy

Posts: 97; Member since: Dec 05, 2011

I think it's easier to vote on the Mfg that does NOT make the best looking devices......Nokia wins that one.

171. Riddy

Posts: 1; Member since: Feb 22, 2013

Guys its about BEST-LOOKING smartphone not the individual OSs lol

169. Latios

Posts: 1; Member since: Feb 22, 2013

I dont think that there is people even voted for nokia, HTC has the best looking phone out there, admit it

168. pratyushgaur.6

Posts: 24; Member since: Feb 21, 2013

So....Will Elop now get down to paying money to PhoneArena? Desperate measures!! xD

167. tha.fox

Posts: 100; Member since: Nov 30, 2011

i personally think Nokia phone are very ugly

165. pratyushgaur.6

Posts: 24; Member since: Feb 21, 2013

Death of Design!! Nokia is leading!! :O

164. rizevnarastek

Posts: 349; Member since: Sep 06, 2012

I guess Nokia pays people to vote for them /down-vote others LOL... Maybe PA should change the way people vote - as in one user one vote ;)

162. nghiadt

Posts: 1; Member since: Feb 21, 2013

Nokia has always the best hardware and design

161. amats69

Posts: 1527; Member since: Nov 12, 2012

Im just wondering on this poll...coz ive voted already this poll last feb 19 night and i saw htc is leading with i think more than 40 percent.....correct me if im wrong

160. amats69

Posts: 1527; Member since: Nov 12, 2012

My list for this poll.. 1. HTC 2. Nokia 3. Apple 4. Sony 5. Motorola 6. Blackberry 7. Samsung 8. LG

159. hiepnx

Posts: 1; Member since: Feb 20, 2013

♥♥♥ Nokia Lumia 920 NO1 ♥♥♥

156. mattypaul

Posts: 17; Member since: Mar 03, 2012

Nokia. With the beautiful polycarbonate design, curved screen that flows into the body, amazing colours, simplicity, and durability, they are the winners.

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