Who Wants a 4″ iPhone 6s, Like the iPhone 5s?

I was listening to this week’s Amplified podcast, and Dan Benjamin said he still used an iPhone 5s, and wanted a 4″ iPhone. I’m in the same boat. I bought an iPhone 6, and returned it, in part because it was too big. I like a phone I can hold in one hand.

I’ve heard from a lot of people on Twitter, when I tweeted about this earlier, who said that they, too, prefer the smaller phone. I have no idea if Apple will be releasing another 4″ phone – other than, perhaps, keeping the 5s in the catalog, as the cheap model – but I would very much like to see one. If not, I’ll see if I can make my iPhone last three years.

(Note: I buy my phones unlocked, so getting another year out of it is a good thing, and I don’t have to continue paying an extortionate price to my phone company.)

So what about you, dear reader? Are you pining for a new 4″ phone? Or do you think, as one friend I spoke with today, that I’m being a luddite, that Apple will never go back to the smaller form factor.

Update: Oh well, foiled again.

27 thoughts on “Who Wants a 4″ iPhone 6s, Like the iPhone 5s?

  1. I’m 1,000% behind you … with a concomitant decrease in complexity (or a concomitant INCREASE In “it just works” simplicity!!

    • I like smaller phones too. Right now I am using my s4 mini but am looking forward to the z5 compact. I would get an iphone if the battery was worth a damn. The Iphone 5 is fine, its even smaller than the z3 compact. The 4s had a lot of bezel at the top and bottom and frankly the finish of the phone looked questionable.

  2. “Are you pining for a new 4″ phone? Or do you think, as one friend I spoke with today, that I’m being a luddite, that Apple will never go back to the smaller form factor.” Those are three separate questions. I would love a new phone of the 5S size, which the one that I am still using. Recognizing the most useful size is not being a luddite. And I fear that it is unlikely that Apple will make us happy on the size question, unless sales figures shift.

    • Yes, indeed. The 5S is just about the perfect size, and I’m dreading what the upgrade to the 6S will bring to my pocket.

  3. I have a 5s and would like a new iPhone in this form factor, but also suggest it be thicker with a larger battery. A thicker iPhone 5s sized device could have the same battery life as the 6 Plus. It wouldn’t have to much thicker.

  4. I Have the 6 Plus, but will likely be going down a screen size next time. Dunno if I’d go all the way to 4″, however.

  5. I would rather purchase a 4-inch iPhone because I’m in love with the form factor, but I’d be willing to buy a 4.7-inch device if that’s the smallest new iPhone announced. My iPhone 5s’ battery is on its last legs and I’m in desperate need of a new device — I have to keep it in airplane mode half the day if I want it to last until bed time. I could buy another iPhone 5s, but I’ll be damned if you catch me buying an iPhone two years after its initial release date.

  6. I am still using 5s and prefer having it than the newer released one. It’s the best size there is specially that I have it on my pocket at all times. I think, they are making it all misleading. A phone should be pocket size that could be accessed anytime. People put their phone in their bag nowadays, compromising the true concept of “mobile phones”.
    I’ve wished 6s woud be a 4″ phone but it’s not.

    Stores here in the Philippines doesn’t offer 5s anymore. (Well some are, but you have to put an order and wait for several days to have it unlike the 6 and 6+, which are available for purchase anytime).

  7. I ‘updated’ to an iPhone 5 just a few months ago, and I love its size. Meanwhile, I’ve handled an iPhone 6 at the local Apple Store, and the iPhone 6 Plus of my brother-in-law. My takeaway is that 4 inches is definitely the size I favour most. While I think I could eventually get accustomed to a 4.7-inch phone, the 5.5 inches of the 6 Plus are just unmanageable for my hands. Fiddling with that iPhone was awkward and I kept worrying I could drop it. So count me in among those who would welcome a new iPhone 6 with the iPhone 5/5s/5c form factor.


  8. With respect, I don’t think people who want smaller phones expect to be riding the bleeding edge of what a phone can do. From that perspective I hope Apple continue to produce the C-line, and offer a 4-inch iPhone 6C which has 6-tech in it, not 6S-tech…

    In other words, I think there’s a solid market for smaller iPhones, but they should be more affordable, and lag a generation behind their bigger siblings. I think most users would prefer their smaller phone to be a bit cheaper, and I doubt any of them would find iPhone 6 processing power to be lacking for their needs. For example, nobody in their right mind would be thrashing photo-realistic 3D games on a 4 inch phone, by choice.

    • With respect, that’s like suggesting that the iPad mini should be a laggard. There are lots of people who don’t want to play photo-realistic 3D games, for example, and use a phone for productivity and more basic tasks. The 5s runs fine with iOS 8, and apparently with iOS 9 (I’ve only installed the beta on an iPod touch), so there’s no worry about processing power.

      • It’s not even remotely similar to suggesting that. The iPad mini screen is bigger than the biggest iPhone screen, so if it’s good enough for iPhones, it’s good enough for iPads. THAT is defensible logic… your comparison is fairly ridiculous.

        You’re also making my point for me. The 5S runs the productivity stuff just fine, so surely my suggestion of putting 6-level tech into a 6C (as is the tradition for C-models) isn’t something to argue over.

        • Why is my comparison ridiculous? You’re suggesting that screen size should be related to processing power.

          • Kirk, Apple has followed this reasoning in many, but not all, product lines. I’ve always bought a 13″ MacBook Pro (and before that the 12″ Powerbook) and these models have always had slower or less-capable processors, less capable graphics chips, and typically are missing something else like a port. Some of this is probably due to battery and heat issues, but I think a little of it is achieving a certain “price point” or “marketing niche”.
            I hope that Apple will release a new 4″ iPhone, but I fully expect it to be lacking in some way (other than battery life and pixels) compared to its larger siblings, whether it’s the processor or camera.
            I’m not impatient to use Apple Pay, but I would think it’s in Apple’s interest to get as many of us as possible on Apple Pay-capable devices, which my 5S is not. And I don’t have an Apple Watch to use for Apple Pay either, although I might try out the AppleWatch before I would succumb to a larger iPhone.

    • Just to add to that… I’ve seen a few people who want the latest and greatest phone, but they want it in a 4-inch variant, but their lofty CPU and RAM requirements don’t stand up to quizzing.

      For some of us, staying ahead of the curve is totally reasonable, but if one is thinking 4 inches, then one obviously doesn’t care about the curve, and it might pay to consider whether it’s really necessary to upgrade all that often.

      • Exactly. In the past, I would sell my iPhone after a year to get a new one. I’ve kept the 5s for two years now, and I’d be happy to be able to use it for another year. I buy unlocked phones, as I say in the article, so the expense of a new phone is not negligible. When I sold one after a year, the resale value was high enough that the new one didn’t cost too much, but after two years, the resale value is quite low.

  9. This is my upgrade year, every 2 on the S cycle. I’ve liked the 5S but I’m ready to go bigger for the extra horsepower and features. I’m a 2 hand phone user anyway, but have sympathy with your cause.

  10. I would love a 4″ phone, I have a 6, but do find it a bit bigger than I’d like… I went to an Apple Store a few weeks ago and played with the new iPod Touches and couldn’t help but think how I’d love to have a phone inside that hardware!

  11. IMHO, even 4″ is too big. If you have an old 3G, I suggest you pick it up. Doesn’t it feel ‘just right’?

    When I upgraded several months ago, I acknowledged that all 3 models were ‘too” big. Given that, I embraced the bigness, and I chose the 6-plus. The reasoning was that too-big is too-big, so I might as well have fantastic looking pictures. The 6-plus also has a higher resolution screen, a faster processor, and a bigger battery. I also find that it’s bigness means I don’t switch to landscape mode as often. Also of note is that the bigger keyboard has *drastically* improved my typing performance,

    The best thing I found, though, was that I CAN use it with one-hand. I just needed to learn how to hold the phone a little differently. I sort of balance it on my finger tips now. Rather than only moving my thumb, which was a real stretch to get that top corner on the iPhone-5, I also move the phone with my fingers. The form factor is still not as good for one-handed use as the 3G, but the other benefits outweigh that issue for me.

    Anyway, I was a hard-core small-screen one-handed iPhone user, but I am now converted to the other side. I LOVE my 6-plus.

  12. Surprisingly I still use an iphone 4 (with the 3.5 screen). Sometimes it´s terrible slow, and sometimes it doesn´t matter. I may buy the iphone 6s soon.

    I have hoped that the iphone 4 would fail, break or suffer some terrible performance problem, wouldn´t boot or otherwise, but it still works. Having missed the iphone 5 or the beautiful 5C, I think the 6 or 6s is big, but then when I look at the iphone 5S it looks small as well.

  13. As stated, over half of all iPhone users are still using 4″ iPhones or smaller (60% is the number given by Tim Cook recently). I have 2 x iPhone 5s, and love their form factor. I need to upgrade from 32GB to 64/128GB, but will not upgrade until Apple comes out with a full featured 4″ phone.

Leave a Comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.