As most of my family is eligible for phone upgrades this month, my wife and I discussed what she might want next. She currently has an iPhone 4, previously had an Android phone. The viable options now are upgrade to a newer iPhone or try something different.
Windows Phone is out, as many of the apps she uses and has for our kids are not available on WP. There's also a killer grocery app that syncs on iPhone that we use all the time. Crazy to get excited about a grocery list app, but just wait til you're married with two kids.
My wife does recall some features of Android that she enjoyed, most notably the Google Maps turn by turn integration. She's also a Gmail user. So I described to her some of the latest Android phones out in the market right now.
You have the Galaxy S3 (4.8 inch screen), HTC One (4.7 inch screen), Galaxy Note (5.5 inch screen), and the list goes on. She then proceeded to ask me,
Do you think I can use those phones with one hand?
Bottom line, to get a modern Android phone, you have to commit to a screen size that's 4.5" or larger. For my wife, always on the go, cooking dinner and holding a baby in one arm, she needs to be able to use her phone with one hand. Type with one hand, swipe down the notifications with one hand, and lock the screen with one hand.
She also notices that many of our young-mom friends are commenting and tweeting at 3:00am. Why? The baby's awake and they're on Facebook trying to stay sane through the sleep deprivation. And trying to operate a phone with a 5 inch screen while holding a baby is harder than shoving a camel through the eye of a needle.
All that being said, there are still those in the smartphone market (including myself) that doesn't want a phablet (a phone that's really the size of a tablet). And if you have the desire to get a modern Android phone, you really don't have a choice but to get a huge screen.
I would love to see a stock Android phone with a great 4" screen.