The world’s thinnest smartphone title has become a thorny affair in recent years, as new contenders basically pop up out of nowhere once every few weeks. Most of the times, no-name Chinese manufacturers are behind these designs that defy gravity common sense, and the goal is to score free publicity for future products with better build quality.
Essentially, while there’s nothing inherently wrong with scouring the market for sub-7 or even sub-6 mm “supermodels”, there is such a thing as too slim. Too slim to handle daily use and abuse, too slim to offer decent hardware performance and, especially, too slim to last more than a few hours between battery charges.
At the same time, it’s important to distinguish the obvious vaporware from handhelds destined for a long, happy life on the catwalk. Here are ten ultra-slender gadgets available via the world’s largest e-commerce outlet that aren’t going anywhere in the coming months and aren’t too svelte for their own good:
|BLU||BLU Vivo Air||229.49|
|Huawei||Huawei Ascend P6||0.00|
|Samsung||Samsung Galaxy A7 Duos||399.00|
|Huawei||Huawei Ascend P7||0.00|
|Sony||Sony Xperia Z Ultra||0.00|
|Samsung||Samsung Galaxy Alpha||199.99|
|Samsung||Samsung Galaxy A5||231.98|
|Samsung||Samsung Galaxy S6||429.99|
|Samsung||Samsung Galaxy A3||0.00|
|Lenovo||Lenovo VIBE X||0.00|
At 5.1 mm, aka approximately a fifth of an inch, the 4.8 incher promises up to 24 hours of continuous juice in talk time. Via 2G networks, that is, with 3G speeds draining the 2,100 mAh cell twice as fast. That’s far from impressive, but compared to other ridiculously thin phones, the Vivo Air is at least quite cheap and, according to folks who’ve touched it, not as frail as you’d expect.
It’s compatible with every US GSM carrier you can think of, caps off at HSPA+ in the connectivity department and tips the scales at, get this, 97 grams. Fashionistas, that’s probably your cue!
6.2 mm won’t break any records… anymore, yet it allows the P6 to come in at a 120 grams weight with 4.7-inch glass in tow and a robust all-metal chassis. Even less expensive than the Vivo Air, the P6 is old news, having seen daylight in June 2013, but rumor is it’ll nab over-the-air Lollipop treats eventually.
The mobile ruler’s newfound fondness of swanky, graceful gear has recently translated in not just the company’s handsomest flagship to date, but prettier-than-ever-before mid-rangers as well. Case in point, the aluminum framed A family, headlined by a fairly steep 5.5 incher with Full HD screen resolution, octa-core punch and 2 GB RAM.
The middle spectrum of the Android décor has sure come a long way. Alas, the A7 can’t possibly deliver respectable autonomy, given the 6.3 mm profile forces battery capacity to cap off at 2,600 mAh. With such a bright Super AMOLED panel, plus an Exynos Octa powerhouse in the equation, that’s a goner in a few casual gaming hours.
The follow-up to the critically acclaimed P6 is, as you’d presume, better-looking, more technically impressive and pricier. Also, slightly thicker, at 6.5 mm, which is a good thing, proving once again a little meat on the bones comes with its share of advantages. Most prominently here, a significantly larger 2,500 mAh ticker.
This oldie but goldie gargantuan phablet measures 6.4 inches in diagonal, weighs in at 212 grams yet touts a 6.5 mm wasp waist. It’s almost a paradox, but one you’d be lucky to get at less than $300. Yes, you’ll bear your charger with you at all times (or maybe an external power bank), however the 1,080p Triluminos display, IP58 water resistance and 2 GB RAM will make the efforts and sacrifices all worth it.
Credited as the one that started Samsung’s metal revolution, the 6.7 mm Alpha preserves plastic remnants of an age past, standing out with amazing construction prowess in addition to style and slimness. Also, fingerprint recognition technology, Lollipop software (on Ma Bell at least), octa-core muscle, 2 GB RAM and generous 32 GB internal storage space.
Oh, but how tiny the 1,860 mAh cell sounds!
The middling member of the middling Galaxy A family looks a lot like the Alpha, measuring the same 6.7 mm in depth, only it’s bigger, at 5 inches, heftier (123 grams), and longer-lasting, presumably, courtesy of a 2,300 mAh battery.
Definitely longer-lasting, since a frugal quad-core 64-bit Snapdragon 410 processor runs the performance show, paired with 2 gigs of random-access memory.
You can’t have a “best of” list sans the as-yet uncrowned heavyweight champion of the world, the 6.8 mm/138-gram “next big thing.” Sure, it’s costly opposite every other mobile on our roundup, but it’s most likely a battery champ too, which is certainly no easy feat.
Okay, maybe not a champ per se, yet I think we can all agree 17 hours of “moderate usage” is a substantial number for an octa-core Quad HD beast with an eating disorder. What more can we say about the S6 we haven’t already said? It’s a must-buy. Period.
Practically tied with the S6 in physical narrowness, the SIM-free A3 is less than a third of the top dog’s price, and consequently, offers specs that are thrice as humble. A lackluster 4.5-inch 960 x 540 pix res screen, quad-core 1.2 GHz S410 CPU, 1.5 GB RAM, 1,900 mAh heart, etc., etc. On the plus side, the metal-clad budget trooper can probably keep the lights on from dawn to dusk if you take good care of it and don’t exert too much pressure on the average qHD display/64-bit processor combo.
How is this “anorexic” 6.9 mm fellow so cheap? Well, it’s ancient for one thing, turning one and a half recently, and it’s also still on an archaic Android iteration – 4.2 Jelly Bean. Then again, the quad-core 1.5 GHz MediaTek MT6589T SoC is probably good for cell endurance, while the 5-inch FHD IPS display, 2 GB RAM, 13 MP and 5 MP cameras are really mind-bending features for Vibe X’s price range.