Are we missing or needing "mid size" phones?

Zorachus

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Reading the iPhone 12 Pro Max reviews today, the one common thing said, was it's a massive large phone with a 6.7" display. Same with the Samsung Galaxy Note 20 Ultra, it's a very big phone with a 6.9" screen. Even the OnePlus 8 Pro reviews said, be prepared, the 8 Pro an it's 6.8" display is a bigger phone than you'd expect.

But then these "regular" sized phones, like the Pixel 5 with a 6" screen, and the iPhone 12 Pro with a 6.1" display, they seem rather small to me. The Pixel 5 size feels tiny to me, almost too small. And the iPhone 12 Pro from what I tested, also felt small in the hand.

I'm starting to think we need a middle size to be the best size, at least in my opinion. So if the 12 Pro Max is gigantic and too large, but the regular 12 Pro too small, what's the middle ground, a 6.4" screen size? Even for me, I have the Pixel 4 XL, it's 6.3" screen size, but with the large forehead it's more like a 6.5" phone, but to me, my 4 XL is borderline the biggest overall dimensions I want of a phone, I do not want anything larger. But I also picked up the Pixel 5, and have to say it's too small, the 6" compact bezeless display is too shrunk down for me, I like something bigger, but maybe not Pixel 4 XL bigger.

So are we in need of "mid size" phones, in that 6.3" to 6.5" screen size? Where 6.9" is just way too large, and 6" is too tiny.
 

auntjemima

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My pixel 2 xl (6") is definitely on the big size for me. I couldn't imagine close to 7. I already have a hard time using it with one hand, which typing or trying to hit the back button.
 

Zorachus

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The issue with these smaller phones though, is companies try to keep them thin and light, meaning small battery too. How bout give me a small screen bezeless phone, but make it thick with like 4,500mAh battery. Actually Google did right with the Pixel 5, it's a very compact small footprint phone with a 6" almost no bezel display, but they put in a large 4,100mAh battery, and it also has a more efficient budget processor as well, giving this tiny Pixel tremendous great battery life.

It seems the 6.1" iPhone 12 Pro could have used some extra thickness and a larger battery.
 

cybereality

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I think 6" is about perfect. The phones have been getting too big, there is a limit to the natural size of a human hand, they can't just keep getting bigger.

The Pixel 2 XL I had was just about on the upper end of what is comfortable to hold. Now I have a Pixel 5 and that is just fine. The screen is just as big as the 2 XL, but with minimal bezel.
 

cybereality

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i still remember the days when cellphones are getting smaller and smaller and lasts a week!

1604976838208.png
 

Zarathustra[H]

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Honestly, to me, the best sized phone I have had in the smartphone era was my Galaxy S3, weighing in at 4.8"

It was large enough that I could see everything I needed to, while at the same time I could rest one corner of the phone in the palm of my right hand, and still reach anywhere on the touch screen with my thumb. It was perfect.

I now have a 5.5" Pixel 3, and while it isn't bad, the ~top quarter of the screen is difficult to use single handed, which is a shame.

I have figured it new ways to hold the modern larger phones in or der to overcome this reach limitation. These days if I need to reach something far up on the screen single handed I seem to slide the bottom of the phone down to rest on my pinky with my other three fingers behind the back of the phone supporting it. This gives my thumb a little more reach, allowing me to reach the whole screen if I stretch, bit the risk of stoppage certainly goes up.
 
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Kardonxt

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I feel like my iPhone 5s was the perfect size. If anything bring back high end 4" phones. All these new 6"+ phones feel like I'm trying to carry around my Switch all day.
 
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I was also a huge fan of the 5S and the original SE. Had the OG SE for years. I carry an iPhone 8 for work and it always felt too big. Just upgraded my personal to the 12 Mini. It is fantastic. Smaller than the iPhone 8, but the screen is enormous. Feels about perfect.
 

travm

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I now have a 5.5" Pixel 3, and while it isn't bad, the ~top quarter of the screen is difficult to use single handed, which is a shame.

I have figured it new ways to hold the modern larger phones in or der to overcome this reach limitation. These days if I need to reach something far up on the screen single handed I seem to slide the bottom of the phone down to rest on my pinky with my other three fingers behind the back of the phone supporting it. This gives my thumb a little more reach, allowing me to reach the whole screen if I stretch, bit the risk of stoppage certainly goes up.
IMO this is a UI fail. The large phone can be fine, but for crying out loud, design the UI so that you can reach the things.
 

kirbyrj

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I was also a huge fan of the 5S and the original SE. Had the OG SE for years. I carry an iPhone 8 for work and it always felt too big. Just upgraded my personal to the 12 Mini. It is fantastic. Smaller than the iPhone 8, but the screen is enormous. Feels about perfect.

I looked at the mini, but the battery life turns me off to it.
 

Zarathustra[H]

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IMO this is a UI fail. The large phone can be fine, but for crying out loud, design the UI so that you can reach the things.

I mean, you can save some things that way, by - for instance - having alternate buttons or actions for top of screen pulldowns and stuff like that, but in the end, if you are viewing a web page in your browser, and there is a link you want to click towards the top, it would take a pretty convoluted UI workaround to make that happen, if you can't reach that part of the screen.
 

travm

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I mean, you can save some things that way, by - for instance - having alternate buttons or actions for top of screen pulldowns and stuff like that, but in the end, if you are viewing a web page in your browser, and there is a link you want to click towards the top, it would take a pretty convoluted UI workaround to make that happen, if you can't reach that part of the screen.
Agreed in a sense, but frankly whoever is designing a website needs to understand, its also a UI, dont make stupid web interfaces....
Insert spicy Linus Torvalds quote here....
 

cybereality

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I like the size of the Pixel 5. The screen is big, but there are almost no bezels, so one-handed almost works.

At least if an app is loaded and you just want to scroll, that is possible. Actually interacting is another story.

My first smart phone was an HTC Incredible. That was actually really nice for one hand, but I guess it's hard to find phones in that size anymore.
 
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T4rd

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I like the size of the Pixel 5. The screen is big, but there are almost no bezels, so one-handed almost works.

At least if an app is loaded and you just want to scroll, that is possible. Actually interacting is another story.

My first smart phone was an HTC Incredible. That was actually really nice for one hand, but I guess it's hard to find phones in that size anymore.

I remember when I had the OG Droid and the Droid X came out with like a 4.3" display in 2010 and all the tech sites were like "this is a huge display and phone", lol. Then the Note came out the next year and blew everyone away again with it's huge 5.3" display. Would be funny to hold one of those again now next to any of my recent phones.
 
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