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The New Phab Trend in Fones?

Phablet: (n.) a device that functions both as a smartphone and tablet with a screen sized between 4.6 to 5.5 inches.

Phablets are catching on as the next “phab” trend – according to ABI Research, more than 208 million phablets will be shipped globally in 2015.

Sometimes it’s a struggle to choose between a smartphone or a tablet; the phablet offers a happy balance. For me, I wasn’t entirely convinced that I need a tablet when I already had a smartphone. However, a phablet is appealing since it combines the benefits of the two into one device.

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For example, they’re just as efficient as a tablet, most with dual-core processor chips for multitasking. Additionally, the newer phablets are LTE-compatible, making connecting that much faster. Though the more petite may need to pick up calls with two hands, phablet screens are great for multimedia content like movies while still being compact enough to put into a jacket pocket or purse.

One claim, which I agree with, is that these are ideally sized for watching movies or reading books on-the-go. The smaller screen size means a lighter, more compact device that’s easier to carry or hold for long periods than a tablet. At around 5-inches, the screen sizes aren’t all that much different from a paperback book or the original E-Ink Kindle, which had a 6-inch screen.

Several Korean electronics makers have introduced phablets to the scene. The latest are from Samsung and LG with the Galaxy Note II and VU (Intuition in the U.S.), respectively.
Though the specs may differ by market, here’s a comparison of the two by PC Mag. (The specs for the Galaxy Note II are for the European version.)


While I find phablet’s appealing for their size since they can fit into any of my purses, my highly opinionated male editor said, “Yeah, maybe these are OK if you want to carry a bag or wear a jacket everywhere you go, but I’m not sold. If I’m going to carry a device that’s too big to fit in the front pocket of my jeans, I might as well just lug around a full-size tablet .”

What do you think about the phablet trend? Would you prefer to have separate devices or one that combines the two? Let us know in the comments.

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About the author by Donna Choi

Born and raised in the States, I came to Seoul in 2009 and have loved living and working in such a high-tech and connected city ever since. I enjoy collecting unique, cute gadgets/items (I have a bread-scented smartphone case!) and traveling around Korea. My personal mission while living in Korea: Try every type of Korean food known to exist

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