When we say ‘phablet’, you’ll probably know that we’re talking about one of the most important developments in smartphone design in recent years. It’s a phase that’s been coined to describe the increasingly prevalent hybrid-style mobile designs, where smartphones have taken on the large screens and processing power of tablet devices. Samsung have been leading this market for years with their big-screen Galaxy range, and even Apple jumped on board last year with the iPhone 6 and 6 plus, after warnings that they were risking missing out on this growing market.
In this article we’re asking if you should invest in a phablet or mobile and tablet? To put it another way: will a phablet eradicate your need for a tablet device? The answer as usual depends on what you want to get out of your devices. Phablet phones such as the Samsung Galaxy range are making the option of streamlining your technological life and sticking with one device for all your browsing seem extremely appealing.
Is there anything a tablet can do that a phablet can’t?
The answer to this critical question of course depends on which phablet you’re looking at. But if you’re interested in phablets with sophisticated hardware as well as fast operating systems, such as the Galaxy S5 or Galaxy Note 4, the answer is: not much. These phablet models are made for browsing the internet, playing video content, taking (and editing photos), as well as using social media. So, in theory, there’s nothing your tablet can do that they can’t.
This is nothing new, as smartphones have boasted a huge range of functions for years. However, many phablets are changing the market with their multitasking abilities. Models such as the Galaxy note 4 have made these multitasking capabilities a priority with, for example, its multi-window feature. This is an important step in phablet technology to note when considering the question ‘phablet or mobile and tablet’, given that frustration with smartphones’ lack of multitasking capabilities has, in the past, led users to put down their phones and pick up a tablet.
Other phablet pluses include battery life that is usually excellent in comparison to ordinary smartphones (again, both the Galaxy S5 and Galaxy Note 4 excel in this area).
Cost might not be as crucial a deciding factor as you might think
In terms of cost, it initially seems like a no-brainer to go for a phablet rather than mobile and tablet − after all, you’re investing in one device as oppose to two. However, the kind of top-quality phablets that can compete with the capabilities of tablets come with a much dearer price tag than many good smartphones. Add this consideration to the fact that you can often get a very good tablet-plus-phone deal (for example, Carphone Warehouse are currently offering a choice of ‘free gifts’, including Galaxy Tab S, 10.5 inch, with many phone contacts), and you may not be saving as much as you think by picking a phablet device. Ultimately, you might not save money by purchasing one device rather than two.
Let’s face it: browsing is better on a bigger screen
We can highlight the benefits of phablets all we like, but it remains true that, for many people, browsing on a 5 or 6 inch screen is not the same as browsing on ten inches plus. This is a very personal preference, and you may well find that the simplicity of having just one device makes the loss of a few inches of screen worth it. However, if you are planning to watch a lot of video content on your device, you may well find it beneficial to have a tablet. If this is the case, it’s probably best to pick a more traditional, smaller smartphone, and combine it with a larger tablet device that you can leave at home for browsing and watching content on.
Phablet or Mobile and Tablet?
Most phablets can do exactly what most tablets can, and you may find that the price difference of going for one device rather than two negligible. So the question of whether a single phablet device will fulfil your requirements, as oppose a smartphone and a tablet, essentially comes down to one question: do you prefer browsing on the (slightly) bigger screen of a tablet? If yes, downsize your phone and supplement it with a tablet (preferably one the bigger 10 inch plus screens). If you don’t mind browsing on a 6 inch or so screen, then you’ll probably find that a phablet meets all your needs − and you’ll be rewarded with the simplicity of using a single device to keep track of at home and on the move.
Phablet or mobile and tablet? The choice is yours.