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iPhone 5 Is the Thinnest Smartphone....That Apple Has Ever Made

Authored by: Steven Blum — Sep 13, 2012

Yesterday I spent over an hour glued to my screen, gobbling up the entire iPhone 5 presentation. I kept hearing the same thing: "This is the thinnest smartphone...the thinnest we've ever made...we've made it using the thinnest materials....it has been designed so thin..." Besides fat-shaming all of those other smartphones out there (I guess it's bikini season over in smartphone land), Apple's statements seemed destined to mislead: perhaps the general public would hear the words "thinnest" so many times that they would begin to think Apple has designed the thinnest smartphone ever.

This is patently false. 

There are at least four other smartphones, that I know of, thinner than Apple's iPhone 5 (which measures .3" thick).  If you're looking for a thinner-than-thin Android, here are your options:

The ZTE Athena

The ZTE Athena is the slimmest smartphone on this list: at just .24 inches thick, it's .6 inches thinner than the iPhone 5. Other features include a 720p display, a Cortex-A15 dual-core processor, up to 64GB in internal memory and Android Ice Cream Sandwich. The only problem? It's not yet on the market. So Apple *could* say they're offering the thinnest smartphone currently available, right?

Oppo Finder 

 

oopo finder

(Foto: Android Guy)

Nope. The Oppo Finder was THE slimmest smartphone on the street when it was first introduced, measuring just .25" thick and it's actually available for purchase. For $479.00 you also get a dual-core processor, 1GB of RAM, a 4.3-inch screen and Android ICS. Not bad.

Fujitsu Arrows μ

(Foto: Engadget)

Fujitsu Arrow μ was only able to hold on to the title of world's thinnest smartphone for a few hours at CES this year...right before Huawei introduced their Ascend P1 S (pictured below). It's not a spectacular phone, but it gets the job done with a 4" screen and a 1.4 GHz processor.

Huawei Ascend P1 S

huawei ascend p1

Lastly, we have the Huawei Ascend P1 S: also presented at CES this year. This phone is not only thin but also is also packed with fancy specs, like a TI dual-core OMAP 1.5 GHz processor, 1GB of RAM and a 4.3-inch screen. It's .26 inches thick, beating the iPhone 5 by .4 inches-

Can you think of any more great slim phones? And also: why do we even care about these things so much? Personally, I like a little cushion for my button pushin'.*

*Sorry...that was terrible

Steven Blum has written more than 2,000 blog posts as a founding member of AndroidPIT's English editorial team. A graduate of the University of Washington, Steven Blum also studied Journalism at George Washington University in Washington D.C. for two years. Since then, his writing has appeared in The Stranger, The Seattle P-I, Blackbook Magazine and Venture Villlage. He loves the HTC One and hopes the company behind it still exists in a few years.

41 comments

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  • Anna F. Sep 16, 2012 Link to comment

    Hehe, that's why I always buy phones off contract :)

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  • Dvoraak Sep 16, 2012 Link to comment

    @Patrick - Cool. Now I just need time to pass quickly. I think AT&T's launching the Note 2 soon in the states but my contract's not up till Dec. :(

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  • Patrick R. Sep 16, 2012 Link to comment

    @Dvoraak, I already flashed the Germany update bringing S3 and Note 2 features to the note. I back on stock and unrooted and can confirm that only the widgets are affected by running a launcher. Have a video playing inside a small window while typing this comment now.

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  • Patrick R. Sep 15, 2012 Link to comment

    @Dvoraak, yeah, I spent hours poring over pages and pages of info on rooting and flashing before I took the plunge. It's a lot of fun though especially if you like tweaking and customizing stuff. Running a custom rom with a custom kernel, both of your choosing truly makes the device your own. The beauty of Android is that there is a mod, tweak orbhack for just about anything and everything.The only thing to beat that is to learn to code and make it yourself.

    This is the reason I chose android over ios, it's the control over the devices I own and it lets me do what I want with it on a level even a jailbroken iPhone cannot achieve.

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  • Anna F. Sep 15, 2012 Link to comment

    Hey guys, please ban the spammer above :)

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  • bill whitfield Sep 14, 2012 Link to comment

    hi apple-tards....i hope that line-up is a mile long to buy your phone thats so thin so you can also go buy that $40 inch thick case youre going to cover it with to protect it....
    if thin was so important wheres the sense of thickening it again with a case?!
    if its so vulnerable shouldnt apple introduce a phone that can withstand being dropped 4 feet????
    ill stick to my $200 android that i can buy outright that can be bought 4 times to equal the cost of 1 outright iphone

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  • Steven Blum Sep 14, 2012 Link to comment

    Alexandr, because the iPhone 5 is beautifully designed. It is made of the highest-quality materials, and you'd have to be either blind to think otherwise. Everything else is just okay about the phone, but you can't knock Apple when it comes to design. Really.

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  • Dvoraak Sep 14, 2012 Link to comment

    Jeez.... I better start studying now.

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  • Patrick R. Sep 14, 2012 Link to comment

    Well with most custom roms, you will lose Samsung features. Although there are a number of TW based custom roms that will retain the features. Another good option is to run a custom kernel with your stock rom. When I am running stock, I run it with the notecore kernel.

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  • Dvoraak Sep 13, 2012 Link to comment

    No. I'd just wait for some team of devs to do the heavy lifting. I'm a quick study but not that quick. Actually probably just go with a decent launcher for a while. At least 'till I get bored.

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  • Nick Mongeau Sep 13, 2012 Link to comment

    My apologies on the app I can't edit the posts but as I was saying if you don't know what you're doing there are just to many risks to be had.

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  • Nick Mongeau Sep 13, 2012 Link to comment

    Dorvaak you aren't wrong. A lot of people believe rooting an Android device is simply to flash a custom on it but believe me there is so much more to it. You can put a shell or launcher on without rooting by all means it's just a home screen and (typically) app draw replacement. With the Note 2 as Patrick had said I would hold off on rooting regardless. There is simply just so much in store for it that dev teams haven't had all the time they need to produce a hard root yet and unless you know how to do it yourself relying on a good developers root is highly recommended where I stand. I was new to it myself not all that long ago and unless do

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  • Dvoraak Sep 13, 2012 Link to comment

    @Nick - Ok.... I may be completely lost. First, it's the Note 2 I'll be getting.

    I thought custom ROMs were the end result of a root and launchers were something you could add without rooting..... No?

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  • Nick Mongeau Sep 13, 2012 Link to comment

    @Patrick - I do agree with that especially with the new phones that are already planning on pushing updates such as the JB update. From what I've heard of it so far I might not even root with it for a while just to mess around with the new stock. Leaks are always kinda iffy with me though. I was tempted to root my bionic with the ICS leak since it's still on Gingerbread after a year but decided against it.

    @Dorvaak - My personal favorite custom ROM is Eclipse but to try to force your device on a custom without rooting is asking for a brick. I went through so many launchers including the two you mentioned i.e. Go Launcher and SPB 3D, which happened my be my two favorite and while SPB 3D looks amazing Go Launcher was my final. If you don't mind my asking what device are you contemplating rooting?

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  • Dvoraak Sep 13, 2012 Link to comment

    @Nick - The shell I mentioned really does look awesome. If there's a shell you like isn't it easier to just go with it over a custom ROM?

    @Patrick - Thanks. Up 'till now I haven't needed to do much with my Android devices. They were just extra toys for a rainy (bored) day. That'll change when the Note is my sole phone. I'll have questions I'm sure.

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  • Patrick R. Sep 13, 2012 Link to comment

    @Nick, I agree about rooting, but I would wait a bit before rooting or flashing a newly released phone. Give the chance for the dev community to really sink their teeth into it, so to speak. I previously bricked my note flashing an ICS leak. Rooting and flashing techniques get refined over time. Early rooters and flashers bear brunt of the risk of encountering bugs and problems

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  • Patrick R. Sep 13, 2012 Link to comment

    @Dvoraak, well I have good news for you then. Apparently an update is being pushed by Samsung to the N7000 in Germany as we speak (rest of the world to follow). Gonna roll back to stock for it and I can tell you what works and doesn't with a launcher to help you decide.

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  • Nick Mongeau Sep 13, 2012 Link to comment

    @Dvoraak - I completely see where you're coming from being afraid to brick your Android device but it honestly isn't as common as you think. I'd say it's nearly as safe as jail breaking an iPhone people just aren't all that smart about it. In all seriousness DroidLife has more than enough forums and information to safely root any device. Rooting a Droid isn't all that hard either and has a lot of plus', and it's free unlike most jail breaking services. In my opinion the IOS build is plenty fine but rooting a Droid just has to many positives.

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  • Dvoraak Sep 13, 2012 Link to comment

    Cool and thanks. I guess I can live without the widgets and SPB 3D in particular doesn't look like you'd want anything else cluttering the screen anyway. Not sure if I'll try rooting. I'd hate to risk bricking something that's essential to me. Jailbreaking is low risk. Not sure about Android ROMs.

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  • Patrick R. Sep 13, 2012 Link to comment

    The features work fine. Everything we saw on the launch will work with a custom launcher, airview, that PIP video etc.

    Only the widgets are affected by the launcher as some of them need TW launcher to run.The calendar, contact etc widgets for example might not be available to be placed in the home screen. The apps themselves work. So insted of having the SPlanner widget on your home screen, you either get a replacement widget like APW to display your 30 day calendar on the homescreen or run the splanner app to access your calendar. In fact when I am on stock, I usually run Apex Launcher Pro but still enjoy touchwiz features and tweaks.

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