Sometimes the better choices come in small packages. But for manufacturers of Android smartphones, size matters and compact smartphones are no longer their main focus. In fact, the screen size of the flagship gadgets of these companies starts at 4.7 inches and up. When you are in search of compact or mini Android smartphones, it is important to note that there are still a good number of high quality compact handsets out there. However, we have to recognize the fact that the top-tier specs and features are normally associated with their larger counterparts. Now that we have gotten that issue aside, let us now take a closer look at the 5 best & latest mini Android smartphones today.
- Samsung Galaxy Victory/Stellar
The Samsung story is all about an Android smartphone company that went big, literally and figuratively. The company has gone the opposite direction and introduced a bevy of handsets with larger footprints, and in the process, has gradually pushed compact and mini smartphones by the wayside. And while the Korean electronics giant has introduced the super-sized Galaxy Note 2 in the emerging niche for phablets, its thin presence in the midsized and mini handset category remains to be a big question.
Smartphone users and tech buffs in the US are the few lucky ones. Samsung is offering a couple of 4-inch Samsung Galaxy variants – Galaxy Victory for phone carrier Sprint and Galaxy Stellar for phone carrier Verizon. Both Galaxy variants are the same in nearly all aspects and the few differences are so negligible that one is easily reminded at how various Galaxy S versions were introduced through several phone carriers in the US. The Galaxy Victory and Galaxy Stellar have 1.5GHz dual core processor under their hoods and this is matched by 1GB of RAM and 4GB of storage capacity. These Galaxy variants support 4G LTE and are equipped with a 2,100 mAh battery.
- Pantech Flex
Pantech is obviously not among those “illustrious” players in the highly competitive market for smartphones and it is not usually one that you would associate with top-end quality and performance. However, if you are daring enough to leave those negative preconceptions behind, Pantech Flex, the AT&T-bound Android gadget, is actually a pretty decent buy when you are in the market for a mini smartphone that offers the best value. The subsidized price alone is already a clincher as it is priced at a low $50 on a 2-year contract with AT&T.
The Pantech Flex basically has the same internals as that of the HTC One X and the Motorola RAZR HD. It touts a 4.3-inch display with a 540 x 960p screen resolution. It is powered by a 1.5GHz dual core processor and is equipped with an 8MP camera on its rear side. The Pantech Flex is a pretty decent mini Android smartphone and for such a low price, it is definitely a great bargain.
- HTC One S
Tech buffs like to refer to this mini Android gadget as the little brother of the HTC One X, which is the flagship brand of HTC for 2012. The One S targets that segment of the market that runs along the thin line separating the flagship brands and the mini Android smartphones. It is also important to note that it is the first Android gadget in our list that is sold internationally.
The HTC One S features a 4.3-inch Super AMOLED display with a 540 x 960p screen resolution and 256ppi pixel density. It comes out of the box with a 1.5GHz dual core processor and this is matched by 1GB of RAM. It supports 4G LTE and comes with an 8MP rear-facing camera. This mini smartphone from HTC is an ideal choice for the budget-conscious buyers.
- Sony Xperia V
This mini Android gadget is bruited to be the better alternative to the HTC One S. This soon-to-be-released compact smartphone from Sony Mobile is powered by a 1.5GHz dual core processor and a 1GB of RAM. It is also highly resistant to dust and water. Its impressive spec list includes a 4.3-inch TFT LCD display with a 720 x 1280p screen resolution and 342ppi pixel density.
It also features a 13MP rear-facing camera, 4G LTE connectivity and is equipped with a 1750mAh battery. However, some tech buffs reportedly found a minor flaw in the Xperia V. The TFT LCD display of the Android gadget appears to be washed out when it is compared to SAMOLED or IPS+ displays. Nonetheless, Sony Mobile clearly has a winner in the Xperia V.
- Motorola Droid RAZR i & RAZR M
Non-flagship Android smartphone is not really the strong suit of Motorola. Now this perception has changed with the release of the RAZR i in European markets and the RAZR M in the US. The main difference between the two mini smartphones by Motorola is the Medfield processor that’s under the hood of the RAZR i. The spec list of these 2 variants of the Droid RAZR get them bunched with the rest of the other mini Android gadgets. However, it gets a few steps ahead of competition in the design department.
The Droid RAZR M and RAZR i features a 4.3-inch display with 540 x 960p screen resolution and 256ppi pixel resolution. The Motorola RAZR M is powered by a 1.5GHz dual core processor while the Motorola RAZR i comes with a 2GHz single core processor. Both variants of the Droid RAZR are equipped with an 8MP rear-facing camera and is powered by a 2000mAh battery.