Greatest compact smartphones 2023

As expertise has advanced, so has display measurement, however you is perhaps uninterested in having to make use of a “bear claw” grip to carry your telephone and are greater than able to ditch the two-hand grasp way of life. It would even be the case that you’ve got all the time cherished a compact telephone because the early flip-phone days and simply want an improve. Whereas a tiny, but performant telephone could look like an enormous ask on this market, we have got some options for you whether or not you are an Android or iPhone loyalist.

In our eyes, there are two classes of compact telephones: Conventional flat smartphones that go for a slimmer width and smaller display measurement, and clamshell telephones with foldable shows. Deciding on tiny, but mighty choices, you may discover that a whole lot of these telephones may simply make the best smartphones list if it weren’t for all of the larger-screen gadgets that actually and metaphorically take up the smartphone market highlight (although the foldables are an exception to this rule, particularly if we’re speaking in regards to the best foldables on the market). Learn on as we additional unpack our alternatives so you’ll be able to determine which compact telephone most closely fits in your hand and life.


Apple has been along for the ride up from a 3.5-inch screen on the original iPhone to as wide as 6.7 inches on the iPhone 14 Pro Max. The excellent news is you could nonetheless purchase a brand new iPhone that will not cramp your hand, and whereas you might have to surrender a few of the greatest options of the most recent iPhone generations, you may nonetheless get a succesful telephone match for streaming and scrolling.

Apple iPhone 13 mini review images photo 17

Apple iPhone 13 Mini

Greatest compact smartphone for Apple followers

The small iPhone to get

With a 5.4-inch display, that is probably the most fashionable expertise you may get with a compact iPhone. And since we’re speaking about Apple, you’ll be able to wager the iPhone 13 mini will final you a very long time.


  • A15 Bionic nonetheless delivers efficiency
  • iOS assist reaches far into future

  • Battery lacks longevity
  • No super-fast refresh charge on show

The iPhone 13 mini would be the one to decide on in order for you one thing palm-able however with Apple’s fashionable iPhone design language. The colours pop on this 5.4-inch 1080p display, the A15 Bionic chipset ought to hold apps working effectively into your many tomorrows, and the corporate is backing up that {hardware} with nice long-term iOS assist. That stated, measurement does play a task within the compromises you may have to deal with when proudly owning this machine: battery cycles are shorter, there isn’t any under-display Contact ID sensor, and there isn’t any telephoto digicam. However at $599, in case you have the correct mix of priorities, you may make the iPhone 13 mini match into your life.

iPhone SE

Apple iPhone SE 3 (2022)

Greatest compact smartphone on a finances

Fittingly acquainted

The iPhone SE (2022) retains the pre-iPhone X days alive for many who have clung to the 2 different iPhone SEs that got here earlier than this one. It is the smallest and most reasonably priced of the telephones on this checklist as effectively.


  • A15 Bionic, identical to the iPhone 13 sequence
  • Traditional iPhone design

  • No MagSafe
  • Single rear digicam

The iPhone SE (2022) is the third machine to maintain the pre-iPhone X look – together with the 4.7-inch 720p+ show, these chunky prime and backside bezels, and that traditional residence button and Contact ID combo – whereas bringing many of the core enhancements that the iPhone 13 sequence had like 5G. As we stated above, dependable iOS updates are additionally a given, so if “it simply works” is caught in your head as a mantra, this could fulfill it. Whereas the one rear digicam does include some lags, it is sub- $500 price ticket makes it probably the most reasonably priced possibility on the checklist – and that should not depend for nothing.

Android telephones

The thrill round Android as of late principally surrounds that of foldable telephones, and whereas nuanced and compact, they don’t seem to be your solely possibility. For those who’re trying to save not solely on house, however some cash as effectively, or maybe you are not fairly able to take the dive right into a glass crease, these handsets supply a extra conventional display with out compromising a compact maintain.

Asus Zenfone 4 image 10

Asus Zenfone 10

Greatest total worth for a compact smartphone

Good bundle

The Zenfone 10 delivers flagship efficiency, has an excellent show and digicam, however squeezes it into a snug one-handed, compact type. 


  • Greatest spec bang for buck
  • ZenUI is an influence person’s dream

  • Cameras are common
  • Again texture may really feel off

For the previous few years, Asus has centered its cellular efforts on pushing Android as exhausting as it could actually into a tool as small as what’s going to match. The Zenfone 10 is the corporate’s third wave in that push and it is a fairly good one: the Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 works with as much as 16GB of RAM and will get a ton of cooling options to sort out all of the video games you may play, the movies you may shoot on the seaside, and a lot extra. ZenUI has a sleeve filled with tips to allow you to glide round that 5.9-inch show with ease. Sadly, it is no exception to the frequent rule with this measurement of telephone of getting mediocre-to-okay cameras, however when it begins at $699, we’re simply speaking about the very best worth in Android.

Samsung Galaxy S23 front in hand

Samsung Galaxy S23

Greatest compact smartphone for the group

Compact leading edge

The extremely fashionable Galaxy S23 sequence begins with this fit-for-purpose entry. With a 6.1-inch display, you get a pocketable telephone that has all of the Samsung trimmings you’ll be able to take.


  • Pixel for pixel show
  • Three rear cameras

  • One UI, whereas acquainted, is bloated
  • Not the favourite little one within the sequence

The Galaxy S23 nails the position of “greatest in present” with its 6.1-inch AMOLED show that simply matches proper into the physique. It is also received a full set of cameras on your broad, ultra-wide, and telephoto pictures. And, most significantly for lots of people, this Galaxy S machine is provided with a Snapdragon SoC as a substitute of 1 from Samsung’s personal fault-riddled Exynos line. Samsung can also be doing a greater job today of extending Android software program replace assist throughout its greatest gadgets, so you’ll be able to anticipate to maintain the S23 round for at the very least 5 years in case you’re keen to stick with it.

Foldable telephones

You do not have to be adventurous to go from flat to foldable telephone. After a number of iterations over time, it could even be attainable to fall in love with the acquainted clamshell flip once more -with the flexibleness of getting each a smaller cowl show and a bigger, folding show lets you hold your notification glances and textual content replies quick and your YouTube and Netflix binges lengthy all whereas sitting small in your hand.

RAZR 40 standing flex mode

Motorola Razr+ (2023)

Greatest clamshell compact smartphone

Sharpest software within the shed

Along with being an excellent all-around telephone with a foldable show, the spotlight of the Motorola Razr+ needs to be its cowl show – you should use just about any app you need on it.


  • Versatile, stunning cowl show
  • Terrific battery life

  • Cameras are simply okay
  • Gradual wi-fi charging

The Moto Razr+, identified in some locations because the Moto Razr 40 Extremely, might be the very best merchandise to return out of Motorola for an extended, very long time. It’s not razor-thin and razor-sharp, however the complete bundle is mild and a small-enough carry to suit into our parameters of “compact.” It is received a vibrant 6.9-inch OLED show that closes in on itself cleanly and a just-as-colorful, huge (in relative phrases) 3.6-inch cowl show. The corporate has additionally tailor-made its tackle Android to let customers placed on just about any app they want to have on that cowl with out the perils of experimentation and error messages. It is extraordinarily highly effective and, but, power-efficient, so it lasts an extended whereas with the Snapdragon 8+ Gen 1 chipset on board. In our opinion, it is price each penny of its full retail worth.

Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 5 - lead

Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 5

Greatest new compact clamshell smartphone

The all-round dependable alternative

Because the globally-established participant in foldables, Samsung’s Galaxy Z Flip 5 brings the familiarity of One UI, a fold-shut show, and, very like the Razr+, a much bigger cowl display.


  • Nice total efficiency
  • High-notch shows

  • Slower charging on all fronts
  • Cowl show utility is restricted vs. Razr+

The Galaxy Z Flip 5 is Samsung’s newest and biggest clamshell – and that is saying fairly a bit on condition that we are on the fifth era of this line. You are getting good, huge shows, the familiarity of One UI, and nice utility (if a bit stodgy because it requires finagling with Good Lock) with huge efficiency and battery life in a petite type issue. It could be a generation-to-generation refinement, but it surely’s an excellent decide total in case you’re coming from an older slab telephone.

Greatest compact smartphones: The underside line

Our best choice of the checklist is the Asus Zenfone 10 due to the immense worth it brings by way of specs and software program utility to cost. Ease of use closely performs into our issues once we’re speaking about smaller telephones, so the truth that ZenUI pushes shortcuts like a double-tap gesture for screenshots and a persistent fast entry apps drawer actually goes a good distance. It additionally has a bunch of nerdier switches and toggles deep down, however our full assessment ought to cowl these completely.

Equally, the Moto Razr+ can also be set as much as carry out effectively even with yesteryear’s top-tier Qualcomm chip. Battery life is nice right here in addition to on the Zenfone. However in terms of speaking in regards to the foldable side, it is all in regards to the cowl show and the flexibility to make use of apps on it with out a lot hassle in any respect.

We additionally did not wish to neglect our iPhone person base with this checklist, however our suggestions are a bit extra strained as Apple solely caters {hardware} updates to small iPhone lovers sometimes. You is perhaps stunned to study that the third-gen iPhone SE can be our decide right here, however in terms of the day-to-day, battery life and Contact ID trump a full-body show for us. The basement-level worth additionally helps.

How did we select these compact smartphones?

If we’re being absolutely sincere, the pool of small telephones from respected manufacturers has shrunken over time. Definitions of “compact” have additionally shifted relative to the expansion in display measurement of the numerous normal flagship choices on sale. For Android telephones, 6.1 inches is about as small as you will get in most markets – and that is trying on the full worth spectrum. After all, once we’re speaking in regards to the Apple camp, effectively, what you see is all you get. And whereas we did contemplate booklet type foldables along with the clamshells, we did a bit of comparative imagining when their inside screens had been closed and finally most well-liked the “fats pockets” really feel of a flip to that of a “lengthy sweet bar” carry {that a} booklet telephone usually totes.

The editorial staff at Pocket-lint has reviewed every of the telephones we have listed right here and has discovered sufficient good in them to suit one particular person or one other. Our job right here was simply to ensure in case you prize measurement above all else that you simply knew about all of your choices.

What’s crucial side about measurement in a compact smartphone?

For the slab telephones, the most important issue is the width as a result of your hand can be cradling stated width each time you decide up your machine. Samsung’s Galaxy S23 would be the widest of the group at slightly below 71mm whereas the iPhone 13 Mini is our thinnest decide at roughly 64mm.

And as we have simply talked about with the foldables, we do assume the clamshell type issue has the sting over booklets on condition that thickness is kind of a relentless once they’re folded shut. Each the Moto Razr+ and Galaxy Z Flip 5 sit at 15mm thick when closed.

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