Phone vs Laptop Trading: Why Trading on Your Phone Might Not Be Such a Great Idea

Forex brokers often have mobile app versions of their trading software. While this makes it easy to monitor your trades, it may not be such a great idea to trade on your phone.

Phone vs Laptop Trading: Why Trading on Your Phone Might Not Be Such a Great Idea
Oreoluwa Fakolujo Forex Trader & Writer
Phone vs Laptop Trading: Why Trading on Your Phone Might Not Be Such a Great Idea

The Disadvantages of Trading Forex On Your Phone

Trading on your phone has some disadvantages that can’t be ignored. Some of them include:

Small Screen Size

disadvantage of mobile trading small screen size
Believe it or not, the small screen size is a huge limitation. The size of the screen you trade on determines how easy it is to visualize and analyze charts.

The small size of your screen can cause you to see things that aren’t there. For instance, a price action candlestick can look smaller on the screen, making you miss out on a potential move. But on a bigger screen, you can make better judgments because you’re seeing the charts as is, without the interference of a small screen.

Also, how many indicators can you fix on your mobile screen before your chart begins to look clogged? One? Maybe two, depending on the indicator. So, you might have to resort to going through the stress of removing one indicator before you can place another on your chart. Or you may even resort to trading without indicators, which may limit you from taking advantage of various uses of indicators.

But with a bigger screen, you can fix more indicators without clogging your screen. This way, you have all the indicators you need on one screen and can easily make decisions.

Another disadvantage smaller screens hand to you is that the mobile developers have to remove some buttons to make the software look less clogged up. What this means is that you would have to go through over one step to access a feature that would have been more easily accessed if you were trading on a bigger screen.

You can access your open trades and still view charts on the desktop version of the MT4 trading platform, for instance. But the small screen size of phones doesn’t allow for this on the mobile MT4 app.


distraction while trading on a phone
Trading requires commitment and concentration. You should take your trading as seriously as you would take any other job. And this includes limiting your distractions.

But your phone is that one piece of technology that connects you to the rest of the world through many other apps and features. Remaining undistracted for long may not always work out.

Apart from the distractions that come from your phone itself, trading with a phone also exposes you to external distractions. How? The portability and convenience of trading on your phone means you can trade anywhere. Now, imagine you are trying to analyze the chart in a bus or somewhere else where distractions abound.

On desktop version trading software, however, you can more easily limit distractions while you analyze your chart.

Feature Limitation

limited features with mobile trading
Another limitation of trading forex on a mobile app is its feature limitation. To cope with the smaller processor performance, screen, and memory space of a mobile phone, brokers often get rid of some important features on their mobile apps.

On the desktop version of the MT4, for instance, you can add and remove custom indicators. In fact, this feature is one of those that make the MT4 the best trading platform, first for beginners, and then for advanced traders. Thanks to this feature, you can access some of the best forex trading indicators, such as these FXSSI indicators.

Unfortunately, the MT4 mobile app has to do away with this major feature. You are then stuck with using custom indicators on your charts, which aren’t always enough, especially for traders who base their chart analysis on indicators.

Apart from the absence of important features, your chart analysis takes a hit when trading on your phone. Sometimes, chart patterns are not immediately obvious to you on your phone. Even when they are, you may not be able to easily draw them out and analyze them on your phone. This means your trades become imprecise and your trade entries and exits may suffer.

When Should You Use Your Mobile App For Forex Trading?

mobile app trading vs laptop trading
Trading on your phone isn’t completely a bad idea. In fact, there are scenarios where trading on the phone is ideal. For instance, you can trade forex on your phone when you are:

  1. Monitoring trades. Mobile trading apps are great for monitoring trades you’re already in.
  2. Cut off from your computer. Trading on your phone can also come in handy when you’re cut off from your laptop or desktop. This way, you’re not completely disconnected from your trading account and can make split decisions based on news updates.
  3. Exiting a position. Another scenario where trading on your phone makes sense is when you’re looking for trade exit opportunities. For traders who only set stop losses but don’t set profit targets, this can come in handy.

Bottom Line

Trading on your phone is possible. It gives you the convenience of portability and easy access to your account. It is also useful for various trading conditions, such as when you’re monitoring your trades, exiting a position, or when you need to access your account in the absence of your laptop computer.

Beyond that, however, trading on your phone is not recommended. It limits your access to important features, exposes you to distractions in and out of your phone, and suffers you with a small screen.

Oreoluwa Fakolujo
Oreoluwa Fakolujo Forex Trader & Writer