Know if You Should Buy a Phablet

Edited by Batkingnz, Anonymous, Lynn, Eng

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Phablets, the latest cell phone trend to take over Asia, are now making strong headway in the US and European markets. However, are these almost Tablet-sized phones for everyone? Smartphones have always been business and multimedia powerhouses, but at times, consumers have asked for bigger and better screens on their handheld devices. If you're looking for a super-sized phone that can also replace your Tablet, a phablet could be just what you need.

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What is a Phablet?

As the name implies, a phablet is a phone that approaches Tablet proportions. To be classified a phablet, the device would need a six-inch or larger screen, and it needs to do everything that a phone does. So you're not looking at a smaller Tablet with a SIM card built in. A phablet is a phone first and foremost, but the size lets you use it for things that you can do more easily on a dedicated Tablet than on a phone, like watching movies, editing documents or playing games on a larger screen.

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Why Would I Buy a Phablet?

The main advantage of a phablet is always going to be the additional screen real estate. Below we will explain in more detail what this means for tasks that you're performing every day on your phone.

Multimedia Playback

Multimedia playback, especially movies and TV shows are something of a novelty on a regular smartphone, but to get a full sense of immersion, a bigger screen definitely helps. Whether you're watching the latest movies released to digital format or keeping up with the Kardashians online, you will appreciate actually getting to see every movement and detail on screen. All of the flagship phablets sport 1080p screens, which means that all of your high definition content will really come to life.

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Editing Documents

Using programs like Polaris or Microsoft Office to do your business on the move is a two sided affair. For one, it's nice to have the functionality to review and make quick edits to documents, but it's also difficult to get any real work done when you're dealing with screen sizes like that of the iPhone 5 or even on larger devices like the five-inch Samsung Galaxy S4. With a phablet, the larger screen will really shine when it comes to editing documents, letting you view more and feel more comfortable working for longer periods. Some high end devices in this category even have high end styluses included with the phone which let you take hand written notes, create and edit images or navigate the phone with gestures.

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Games

Regardless of whether you're using your phone for mostly business or personal purposes, almost everybody loves mobile games. If you own or have ever played games on a Tablet then you will know that the experience leaves a much better impression than that of a regular smartphone. There's something special about the extra screen size that really brings you closer to the action. Even if the difference is only one or two inches in screen size, the difference is almost night and day. If you're looking for the most impressive mobile gaming experience, a phablet could be just what you need.

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Two Devices In One

One of the reasons that phablets are starting to take off in a lot of markets is the value for money factor. While a well spec phablet will cost you as much as a top end smartphone, it's the savings that you will make that count. A phablet can do the job of a phone and a Tablet, and although there are compromises either way, it's a viable all in one device. So for someone on a budget who wants to enjoy a Tablet for multimedia, gaming and a bit of work, but who also needs a capable smartphone, a phablet is the obvious choice.

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Ease of Use

Over the years, technology has allowed phones to become smaller, thinner and lighter but there are some who prefer some heft and size to wrap their digits around. Phablets are large devices, so if you're someone with larger hands, or if you just prefer to be gripping something substantial, a phablet could be preferable for you, above other smartphones.

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What Are the Drawbacks of Using a Phablet?

A phablet aims to be two devices in one, and on many levels it succeeds, but there are still downsides. They're not perfect smartphones, nor are they perfect tablets, but they're the best that you can get in between. Read on below to find out the compromises made when using a phablet.

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The Size

  1. 1
    One of the biggest selling features is also the same thing that could turn many consumers away from a phablet.
    A smartphone is generally portable and most can be operated with one hand, but with a phablet, the average person would need to hold the device in one hand and navigate and input with another. This might not matter when using it in the home or office, but if you're on the move a lot, then this could be a major drawback.{
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  2. 2
    The size comes into play when finding places to put the phone as well.
    Most phablets are thin, but the surface area is large. Most men could fit the phone into a pocket of regular cut jeans, business trousers, etc., but for skinny jeans or female attire, which usually has smaller pocket areas, the phone becomes slightly less portable, needing to be kept in a bag or large purse.
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  3. 3
    Lastly, but possibly also most importantly, size can become an issue when making and receiving calls.
    If you're self-conscious about how you look holding an almost seven-inch device to your ear while taking calls, then you're going to need a Bluetooth headset to do all the talking. Even if you're not worried how you look, holding a device as big as a phablet up to your ear for extended conversations is not exactly comfortable.
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Compromised Tablet Features

Many tablets are almost notebooks when it comes to features and portability. Some like the ASUS Transformer series have keyboard docks with built in batteries, full sized USB ports and HDMI ports for outputting video to projectors and HD displays. With a phablet you don't have the option for accessories like docking stations, and the connections on the device are the same as a regular phone, so if you rely on these things in a Tablet, a phablet is probably not your all-in-one device.

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The Most Popular Phablets Today

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Samsung Galaxy Note Series

The Samsung Galaxy Note Series is the most popular line of phablets, and the pioneers of these over-sized phones. Since the release of the Note I, phablets have reached sales of 20 million in Korea alone. The latest version, the Galaxy Note III sports a full 1080p 5.7-inch touchscreen with stylus support, 3 GB RAM and 64 GB internal storage with microSD card expansion. The Note series phablets all run on Android OS.

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Nokia Lumia 1520

The Lumia 1520 is Nokia and Windows Phone 8's first foray into the phablet market. It's running the latest quad core CPU with 2 GB RAM and 32 GB of internal storage that's also expandable by microSD. This phone also has a 1080p display measuring at six inches. A big selling point of the Lumia line is the advanced cameras and custom Nokia software builds. This device has a best in class 20 MP camera that would put most dedicated point-and-shoot cameras to shame.

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Sony Xperia

The Xperia Z Ultra is another Android OS phablet and is one of the largest at 6.4 inches. Like most high end devices in this category it has a 1080p screen for enjoying your high definition content. It runs the same top of the line quad core CPU as the Nokia with 2 GB of RAM, but only 16 GB of internal storage. (You can still expand it with microSD cards.)

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Tips, Tricks & Warnings

  • As you can tell by now, a phablet is not for everyone, but if the pros outweigh the cons, it can be the best device to go for, especially if you want to eliminate an additional Tablet and save money.
  • Before purchasing one online, make sure you get into a store to hold and use a phablet sized phone. Pictures don't do the size justice and you won't know if the device works for you until you hold one in your own hands.
  • If you have problems with any of these steps, ask a question for more help, or post in the comments section below.
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Categories : Hardware

Recent edits by: Lynn, Anonymous, Batkingnz

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