Plastic is the best phone material, according to Windows Central readers

Grid Studio Nokia Lumia 520 mount.
(Image credit: Daniel Rubino)

What you need to know

  • Leaked images of a canceled Microsoft Surface Duo appeared last week, showing a device featuring a plastic body.
  • The foldable's design sparked a discussion about which material is best for a smartphone.
  • Over 41% of our readers prefer smartphones with plastic bodies.

Smartphones come in a variety of materials these days. Metal, plastic, ceramic, and glass bodies all have their own pros and cons. When a canceled Surface Duo appeared online, one thing that stuck out was the device's plastic body. The foldable phone featured a plastic exterior, presumably put in place to reduce the device's cost.

When it comes to smartphone bodies, price doesn't always dictate the preference of shoppers. That showed strongly in our recent poll, in which 41.65% of people said that plastic was the best material for a smartphone. Metal earned second place with 34.38% of the votes.

Glass, which is common among flagship devices, received the fewest votes from our readers (8.45%).

In addition to being more affordable, plastic bodies are lighter and easier to replace. They also support wireless charging. They don't feel as robust in hand as metal, glass, or ceramic, but it seems that the benefits of plastic outweigh the cons, at least to those that voted in our poll.

As you might expect, some of our readers long for the days of Windows Phone, including the materials used in those devices.

"Yeah I was a huge fan of the unibody polycarbonate phones of the Windows Phone era," said AlphaChap on our Discord forum thread. "Aluminium frame + plastic back can be good if you want the ability to pop the back [off] easily like the Lumia 830. Otherwise I prefer just plastic."

Others have more expensive tastes. Hagrid, presumably not the actual half-giant, likes a phone with an "aluminum frame, ceramic back glass, [and] Gorilla Glass Victus for front screen."

While the poll is closed, the Discord thread is open, so please jump in to share your thoughts.

Sean Endicott
News Writer and apps editor

Sean Endicott brings nearly a decade of experience covering Microsoft and Windows news to Windows Central. He joined our team in 2017 as an app reviewer and now heads up our day-to-day news coverage. If you have a news tip or an app to review, hit him up at