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A guide to choosing between smartphones and feature phones


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Strap – Functionalities of smartphones and feature phones

Mobile phones have become a primary need for every individual. Right from children to the elderly, everyone uses it in their way. In this digital age, smartphones are more attractive than feature phones. But nonetheless, feature phones are still in the market. So, let’s understand the difference in their functionalities and what phone suits you. But before that, let’s analyse the terms, feature phones and smartphones.

Feature phones are mobile phones with minimum functions like calling, seeing images, playing music and chatting using social media apps.

Smartphones are like palm computers, which can perform any task a modern-day computer can do.

Comparing the functionalities of smartphones and feature phones:

1.     Display screen

Smartphones use different screen panels like LCD, OLED, and AMOLED displays with high resolutions. But the feature phone has low-resolution screens. The display size of feature phones is small compared to smartphones. For example, the iPhone 15 Pro has an OLED display of high resolution (1179 x 2556 pixels).

2.     Operating system

The operating system offers a great deal of features in smartphones. However, feature phones have an inferior operating system that restricts third-party apps and many pother features that are common on smartphones.

Operating systems used in smartphones include Android and iOS. For example, the iPhone 15 Pro currently runs iOS 17. Operating systems in feature phones include Java and Symbian OS.

3.     Internet connectivity

Feature phones use 2G, 3G, some times 4G network connectivity. On the other hand, smartphones support the 5G networks with incredible speed and functionalities. Thus, smartphones have versatility compared to feature phones.

4.     Application facilities

Smartphones have a better app ecosystem and can download multiple third-party applications to install and run. But feature phones are limited to fewer pre-installed functions.

5.     Multimedia and camera facility

Though a rear camera is available in most feature phones, it gives low-resolution images. However, a smartphone camera gives resolutions that are much higher, and images that are much more pleasing to the eye. For instance, the Redmi Note 12 provides a triple camera with 48 MP, 8 MP and 2 MP resolution.

6.     Hardware components

The processors used in smartphones are more advanced compared to feature phones. Furthermore, more data can be stored in the smartphone. Thus, a smartphone can perform with high speed, accuracy and user experience.

7.     Price

Better the features, higher the price. Despite the improvement and more attributes being developed in feature phones, smartphones are ahead. So, the price of feature phones is lower. Smartphones like Redmi Note 12 cost Rs 11,999, and feature phones like those from Nokia and Lava cost around Rs 1,500-1,900.

8.     Durability

Many drop tests confirm that feature phones can withstand the fall. But smartphones are fragile unless they are protected in a high-quality case.

9.     Battery life

Without a doubt, feature phones have better battery life and standby time. The underlying reason is less charge consumption, as the applications are limited. In contrast, smartphones must be charged multiple times daily if you are a heavy user.

Pros and Cons of feature phones and smartphones

Pros of feature phone

  1. It fits in the pocket and is easy to carry.
  2. Feature phones are budget-friendly.
  3. It is the best choice if you want to stay away from distraction.
  4. You do not need frequent charging; thus, stay connected with your loved ones even in remote areas.

Cons of feature phones

  1. Feature phones offer limited multimedia and a low quality camera
  2. These phones are old-fashioned.
  3. You cannot enjoy any sophisticated features which a smartphone can offer.

Pros of smartphones

  1. Smartphone offers advanced features.
  2. Accessible communication anywhere at any time.
  3. It provides entertainment, education and much more.
  4. Can take pictures and videos of high-quality.
  5. It comes with security features.
  6. You can connect with other devices like televisions and speakers.

Cons of the smartphones

  1. It is not suitable for children as they spend time on videos and games.
  2. Smartphones can make you addicted to them.
  3. Smartphones are costly and tempt to upgrade to new versions.


In the year 2023, talking about feature phones is still relevant. People only use it as a backup phone to make calls and view messages. People with less tech knowledge also prefer feature phones.

However, when the need arises, they switch to smartphones as they offer multiple functions. Both the hardware and software facilities of smartphones are unbeatable and keep upgrading. Thus, smartphones like the iPhone 15 Pro and Redmi Note 12 are meant for performance, whereas feature phones are just for communication and comfort.

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