April 19, 2024

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Small phones have fallen out of favor, but the Pixel 9 looks to fill that gap

Small phones have fallen out of favor, but the Pixel 9 looks to fill that gap

I feel like I'm breaking a record at this point, but amid the new Pixel 9 leaks this week, many are still asking Google for a “Mini” device, forgetting that small phones are dead.


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Over the past decade, smartphones have… truly big. While a regular phone used to be small by modern standards, many of us are walking around with tablets nowadays — in some cases literally, thanks to foldable devices. But as phone screens moved into the 6-7 inch world, there was always a group of people asking for smaller smartphones.

Repeatedly, it was clear that small phones had essentially stopped working.

One recent reminder of this is the Asus Zenfone 11, which added “Ultra” to its name and upsized the package, eliminating the last top-tier Android phone with a sub-6-inch screen size. It wasn't a surprise that, realistically, a small phone wouldn't survive in today's market. The Pixel Fold also has a very small external display which was a pleasure to use, but Google is moving away from that in the sequel.

The people have spoken, and they overwhelmingly prefer larger phones. Well, if Apple can't make the “Mini” work, then no Android manufacturer will, as I said, in 2022.

Amid the new leaks of the Pixel 9 series that revealed that Google will have three devices to choose from, there are still some clamoring for a “Mini” in Google’s lineup. I don't think that will ever happen, not only because the market doesn't exist for it, but also because, for… Most For people who ask for small phones, the Pixel 9 series will actually be very close to what they are asking for.

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Both the Pixel 9 and Pixel 9 Pro are expected to be on the lower end of 6-inch displays, and both devices appear to measure 152.8 x 71.9 x 8.5mm. That's just a hair bigger than the Pixel 8, which Abner Lee praised as “the little phone of my dreams” in a review last year.

In fact, I think this is as small as a modern phone should be. wide, wide The majority of people will be thrilled to get a flagship experience in a device of this size, because it does a good job of splitting the difference between something really “small” like, say, the iPhone 13 Mini, and something big enough by modern standards.

In short, the “Pixel Mini” of your dreams will (probably) never happen, so let's be happy that it looks like we're getting a full-featured, smaller “Pixel Mini.”


The most important news of this week

Circle to Search just got its first major expansion

This week, Google inaugurated its first major expansion of Search. Previously only available on the Galaxy S24, Pixel 8, and Pixel 7, the feature is now rolling out to the following devices:

  • Pixel 6/Pro
  • Pixel 6a
  • Galaxy S23/+/Ultra
  • Galaxy S23 FE
  • Galaxy Z Fold 5
  • Galaxy Z Flip 5
  • Galaxy Tab S9/+/Ultra

Google also confirmed that Circle to Search will be coming “soon” to the Pixel Fold and Pixel Tablet. The search department will also add inline translations. Samsung also mentioned that Circle to Search is more popular than any of the Galaxy AI features.

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Samsung's One UI 6.1 interface has arrived

Circle to Search's expansion on Samsung devices is also largely thanks to the One UI 6.1 software update that's now rolling out to many 2023 Galaxy devices. The update, which should be very widely available by the time you read this, It brings many AI features and other tweaks in addition to Android 14.

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