Smartphones are getting bigger and bigger. A lot of devices today, especially flagships, now offer displays measuring at least 5.5-inches. Among these are the Samsung Galaxy S9, the HTC U12 Plus, the OnePlus 6, the Huawei P20 Pro, and the LG G7 ThinQ, just to name few.
Large smartphones do have their share of problems, as they are not easy to use with one hand and can be difficult to carry around at times. Those are just two of the reasons why some consumers still prefer small Android phones. If you’re one of them, this post is for you.
We have compiled a list of the best small Android phones on the market right now. By small, we mean those with a display size of 5-inches or less.
Google Pixel 2
The Pixel 2 is Google’s latest flagship smartphone, and it’s great at just about everything. If you’re in the market for one of the best small Android phones, the Pixel 2 is a great option.
This device has a 5-inch OLED 1080p display with a pixel density of 441 ppi. It doesn’t have a fancy 18:9 aspect ratio screen or a bezel-less design, though it does have front-facing speakers above and below the display. Inside, it comes with a speedy Qualcomm Snapdragon 835 processor, along with 4 GB of LPDDR4x RAM. You can buy the phone with either 64 GB or 128 GB of on-board storage, but there’s no microSD card to add additional storage.
If you like taking photos with your phone, you’ll be very pleased with the Pixel 2’s 12.2 MP camera. Not only has it been named the best smartphone camera on the market according to DxOMark, we found the Pixel 2’s main camera to be incredibly impressive in most situations. There’s even a portrait mode on the front and back cameras, even though the phone doesn’t have a dual-camera setup.
If you want a Pixel phone with a larger battery and can live with a mediocre display, we’d recommend going for the 6.0-inch Pixel 2 XL — you’ll be very happy. But if you can live with a smaller battery and a smaller screen (that doesn’t have any issues), we’d recommend the Pixel 2.
- Google Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL review: the way Android is meant to be
- Google Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL specs
- Google Pixel 2 XL unboxing and first impressions
- Google Pixel 2 vs Samsung Galaxy Note 8: the flagship battle
- Google Pixel 2 vs Google Pixel: what’s changed?
- Google Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL specs: Google’s vision for the modern flagship
- Google Pixel 2 cases – here are some of the best you can buy
- Google Pixel 2 XL cases – here are some of your best options
Samsung Galaxy A3 (2017)
The Samsung Galaxy A3 (2017) is a compact mid-range device thanks to its 4.7-inch HD display. Announced in January, the phone sports a metal frame with a 3D glass back. It’s also water and dust resistant thanks to the IP68 rating. In case you’re wondering, this means that it can be submerged in up to one and a half meters of water for around 30 minutes.
You’ll find the Exynos 7870 chipset under the hood along with 2 GB of RAM. The smartphone runs Android 6.0.1 Marshmallow with Samsung’s custom skin on top. Other things worth mentioning are a 13 MP camera, a 2,350 mAh battery, and a fingerprint scanner located on the front, below the screen.
In terms of design, it looks very similar to a lot of other Galaxy smartphones, which can either be a good or a bad thing depending on who you ask. It retails for around $280 and comes in quite a few different color options. While not the very best of the small Android phones on the market, if you’re a Samsung fan that is looking for a smaller display, this could be the right choice for you.
- 4.7-inch Super AMOLED display with 1280 x 720 resolution, 312 ppi
- 1.6 GHz Exynos 7870 Octa
- 2 GB of RAM
- 16 GB of on-board storage, microSD expansion up to 256 GB
- 13 MP rear camera, 8 MP front camera
- Non-removable 2,350 mAh battery
- Android 6.0.1 Marshmallow
- 135.4 x 66.2 x 7.9 mm, 138 g
- Samsung Galaxy A3 & A5 2017 hands-on
- Samsung announces Galaxy A (2017) series with 3D glass, water-resistance and more
Sony Xperia XZ2 Compact
The successor to the Xperia XZ1 Compact is Sony’s latest phone to squeeze in high-end smartphone features in a small form factor. It may only have a 5-inch display, but the Xperia XZ2 Compact still has the most powerful mobile chip you can currently get, the Qualcomm Snapdragon 845 processor.
It also has 4GB of RAM, and 64GB of onboard storage, along with a 2,870 mAh battery. In addition, it has IP68 dust and water resistance and a 19 MP rear camera with Sony’s Motion Eye technology which is supposed to capture photos a couple of seconds before the user actually takes the photo for better visuals. Slow motion video at 960fps is still available but now has been upgraded to 1080p resolution and the camera natively supports HDR video recording for richer colors and more details. The 3D Creator app Sony implemented last year for creating 3D model scans has also been improved to support this phone’s 5MP front-facing camera.
The Xperia XZ2 Compact is currently available to purchase unlocked on Amazon for $599.99. It will only work on GSN carriers such as T-Mobile or AT&T. It is certainly the most advanced of the small Android phones on this list.
- 5-inch 5-inch FHD+ HDR display
- Qualcomm Snapdragon 845 processor
- 4 GB of RAM
- 64 GB of on-board storage, microSD expansion up to 256 GB
- 19 MP rear camera, 5 MP front camera
- Non-removable 2,870 mAh battery
- Android 8.0 Oreo
- 135 x 65 x 12.1 mm, 168 g
Would you like a rugged phone that’s also really, really small? Take a look at the Unihertz Atom, which is currently available to purchase via Kickstarter. A follow up to the company’s earlier Jelly phone, the Atom is designed to be thicker and more rugged than the Jelly.
It may only have a 2.45 inch display, but the Atom has been given the highest IP68 rating for water and dust resistance, which means not only does this phone fit nearly anywhere, it should be able to take a lot of abuse. You could even wear it comfortably on your arm as you run. In fact, Unihertz is selling optional running, biking and body clips for the Atom so it can be securely placed on your body or your bike.
The phone uses an unnamed octa-core 2Ghz processor, and the Atom still crams in 4GB of RAM and 64GB of onboard storage. It also has a 16MP rear camera, an 8MP front-facing camera, and a 2,000mAh battery. It even has a USB Type-C port, a headphone jack, amd a fingerprint scanner, along with a programmable key on the side that can be set to quickly launch an app, take a quick picture and more. The Atom’s Kickstarter campaign is already fully funded and the phone is scheduled to ship in October.
- 2.45-inch display, 432 x 240
- Android 8.1 Oreo
- Octa-core 2Ghz processor
- 4 GB of RAM
- 64 GB of storage,
- 16 MP rear camera, 8 MP front-facing camera
- 2,000 mAh battery
- 96 x 45 x 18mm, 106g
HMD Global relaunched the Nokia brand for smartphones in 2017. At the moment, the smallest of the company’s devices is the Nokia 1, with a 4.5-inch 480 x 854 display. Inside, there’s a MediaTek MT6737M processor running at 1.1 GHz, along with 1 GB of RAM, 8 GB of storage, a 5MP camera in the back and a 2MP camera on the front. It also comes with a 2,150 mAh battery and runs the Android Go edition of Android 8.1 Oreo.
You can get the Nokia 1 for as little as $115 unlocked from eBay in the US, or you can purchase it from Amazon for £79.99 in the UK. It’s a worthy addition to the best small Android phones list.
- 4.5-inch 480 x 854 resolution display
- 1.1 GHz MediaTek MT6737M
- 1 GB of RAM
- 8 GB of on-board storage, microSD expansion up to 32 GB
- 5 MP rear camera, 2 MP front camera
- Non-removable 2,150 mAh battery
- Android 8.1 Oreo (Go Edition)
- 133.6 x 67.78 x 9.5mm, 131 g
There you have it. Those are our picks for the best small Android phones on the market right now. Which one is your favorite? Let us know in the comments below.