Why 2013 was the year of the phablet and 2014 will see a bigger iPhone
The year 2013 can well be described as the year of the phablet (phone + tablet, for the uninitiated).
Mainline smartphone manufactures (barring Apple) moved towards six-inch phones as Samsung, LG, Huawei, BlackBerry and even Nokia came out with phones measuring six inches in length.
It was Samsung that first introduced the phablet-sized device with its Note series. Initially, the move was frowned upon as many felt it would be impractical for people to hold a device as big as a tablet close to their ears to answer a call.
With the successful introduction of the Galaxy Note 3 last year, Samsung once again proved that its decision to go big was not only perfectly timed but also justified its market lead in the segment. Last month, Samsung announced that it had managed to sell 10 million units in just 60 days.
The success of large screened devices made Samsung come out with the Galaxy Mega the 6.3 inch phone, which can well be termed as the world’s largest phablet.
Even before Samsung had launched its Mega, Chinese manufacturer Huawei came out with the Ascend Mate, what was then considered as the largest phablet. The device was first unveiled at the CES in January 2013 and comes with a 1.5GHz quad-core processor and 4050mAh battery.
The success of Galaxy Note prompted many others to follow suit.
HTC too joined the race with the HTC One Max which was launched in October.
The 5.9 inch device incorporates a finger print reader and an improved battery.
BlackBerry, which has been struggling with its smartphone sales was not to be left behind. It launched the Z30 a 5 inch device with an updated OS and better features. But like other BlackBerry models the handset continues to struggle in terms of sales.
Nokia which revolutionised the camera within the smartphone with the Lumia 1020 famous for its 41 megapixel also launched the Bandit or the Lumia 1520 earlier this year.
The 6-inch device is powered by Qualcomm Snapdragon 800 and 2.2GHz quad-core processor and a 20 MP camera and 3400 mAh battery life.
Phablet sized devices have experienced impressive sales and experts now say could be the future of smartphones during the coming years.
According to a report by Forbes quoting Bob O’Donnell founder of Techanalysis Research, about 175 phablets could be sold across the world compared to 165 million small sized tablets.
The trend has not spared Apple either. Today there is more pressure on Apple to come out with a larger sized iPhone, something which Apple might be actually working on.
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