Small phones guide: is small really beautiful?

A small phone is cute, compact and practical. Read our small phones guide to find the right handset for you.

Phone manufacturers are finding ever more creative ways of cramming more and more features into increasingly compact, stylish designs, so for many mobile phone fans small really is beautiful.

Our dedicated guide will talk you through the pros and cons of phones of small phones and the features you can expect from them.

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Why choose a small phone?

Without stating the obvious, perhaps the biggest selling point of small phones is their size. Modern smartphones tend to sacrifice a compact design for more functionality and large screens, which they take up a great deal of space. Choose a small mobile and you’ll have much more room in your bag or pocket.

Small phones also appeal to fashion-phone fans who are attracted by the stylishness of their designs over more traditional handsets.

Are small phones less powerful?

The slight dimensions of small phones does not necessarily mean that they are any less powerful than other handsets. In fact, many manufacturers have done a fantastic job of squeezing high-end functions into small form factors.

A case in point is the Sony Ericsson Xperia Mini Pro. This offered everything that’s great about an Android phone, such as the ability to download thousands of apps, surf the web and connect with your social networks, with still enough room to equip a slide-out QWERTY keyboard for faster emailing and messaging, all in a package only marginally bigger than a credit card.

Small phone form factors

The smallest handsets often tend to be slide phones and flip/clamshell phones. Both are two part devices, although flip/clamshell phones are opened and closed on a hinge mechanism instead of a slider.

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Disadvantages of a small phone

For the less dexterous users and those with larger fingers, small phones can be cumbersome to use. This is especially noticeable with touchscreen mobiles, where a small phone’s reduced screen size can really hamper the user experience. Small phones often reduce the keypad area too, which make them hard to navigate even when they employ a more traditional user interface.

A small screen also makes watching videos on your handset less pleasurable. So, if you’re planning to use your mobile as an all-round entertainment device, it might be better to pick up a larger handset.

The good news is that you have plenty to choose from. Industry leading phones now pack displays of over four inches long. The experience of using them is enhanced by the fact the screens are often incredibly vibrant and are capable of displaying videos and movies in rich high-definition.

Finally, with the odd exception, small phones typically do away with physical QWERTY keyboards. As a result, a small phone might not be right for you if you’re planning to write extensive emails and messages with your handset.

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