Phablet – The future of handheld devices?

With the shifting trend from desktop PC’s to handheld devices the real question is does the size matter. From the ancient feature phones to the high end smartphones, there has been a gradual increase in the screen size. Now that that the smartphone market is saturated and the tablet market advancing rapidly, one is forced to wonder what is the next big device.


Phablet – a hybrid smartphone cum tablet could definitely be it. These devices, usually varying from 5 inches to 7 inches, combine the communication capabilities of smartphones with the processing power of tablets. Named by Samsung during the launch of Galaxy Note, Phablet may be a word frequently used in the mobile industry.


The displays by companies like Sony, Huawei at the CES 2013 have highlighted that Phablet may just be the device of the year 2013. As per the predictions at CES 2013, phablets along with wearable electronics may usher us into the next generation of technology. Huawei’s 6.1 inch screened Ascend Mate device, which is impressively thin, has a screen which outruns any smartphone in the race. Similarly, Sony Xperia Z, with a 5-inch display, is notable in the marketplace for being impressively waterproof.
So what’s happening here? What we see is the evolution of technology. Smartphones, which are famous for their portability, often provide very limited capabilities due to their smaller screens. On the other hand, tablets despite being powerful, lack the ability to make phone calls. This creates an opening for a device in between the two.
The 5+ inch screen size Phablets would be ideal for reading eBooks without having to zoom in, for watching video which would look very attractive on the high-definition screen or to even work on documents, spreadsheets.
Take for example, the most selling Phablet, Samsung Note II. With a screen size of 5.5” and a resolution of 720 x 1280 pixels, this Android Jelly Bean Phablet can be used for anything like viewing a movie or working on documents on the go. Similarly the MicroMax Canvas A100 gives an amazing 5” phablet at an affordable price of Rs. 10399. Karbonn’s A30, 5.9” Phablet with 8MP camera which is priced at Rs. 11900 is definitely worth the amount.
While analysts claim that 2013 is the “Year of the Phablet” many question whether the Phablet are the netbooks of 2013, doomed to be produced in mass quantities but yielding a user experience so unsatisfying that the category eventually dies out. The answer to that is a big NO! Phablet are here to stay and not just stay within its limits. Fears are expressed that the Phablets are going to be the PCs of this decade. They will become the default computing device for all the users for a simple reason: consumers need a single device that can do absolutely everything. Instead of carrying two devices, a smartphone and a tablet, consumers will prefer to carry a Phablet, they’re reducing their data costs and increasing efficiency. Another considerable factor which is advantageous to the Phablet is the price. Most of the phablets range in the price limits of smartphones and are hence more preferred.
For those claiming that the Phablet is less portable or too big, the acceptance of increasing screen sizes of smartphones proves that it’s not really an issue. After all, any device that eliminates the need for owning and carrying two separate devices—a phone and a tablet—is a better solution.