Phonblet; The Perfect Device?
Whatever you want to call them, would a smartphone with around a 5.5" to 6.0" touchscreen be the perfect connectivity device?
For reference; The new Galaxy Note, with its 5.3" screen, is about the size of a checkbook, but an inch shorter in length. A 3"x5" card would be a 5.8" screen. The Galaxy Nexus has a smaller 4.65", HTC Titan a 4.7" and Dell had a 5" Streak phonblet, but killed it. These compare to most smartphones that have 3.2" to 4.3" screens.
Galaxy Nexus 4.65" & Galaxy Note 5.3"
Galaxy Note 5.3" & Galaxy Tab 7.0"
A while back there was a tablet thread and since then, a lot of tech reviews I've read have praised the 7"er tablets for being the most useful and portable in their line of work while outselling the plethora of 10" offerings. In that thread I made the case that 7" tablets were too small for the full web and video experience, 10"ers are cumbersome, so the 'perfect size' is a 8" to 8.5" that could fit in suits, cargo pants and purses. A few 8" to 9" tablets - Galaxy Tab 8.9", LG Optimus 8.9", Archos 8.0" G9 and the new Motorola XYBoard 8.2" and Pantech Element 8.0" - are available.
But all these tablets have a problem - they're not phones and they're not small. Apps have been developed to sync your tablet to your phone, allowing one data plan, but you still need the phone to make calls. Even if a tablet had a phone plan and bluetooth headset, lugging the smallest 7" tablets around just to make calls is a little dumb.
So, would a 5.5" to 6.0" phonblet capable of making calls be large enough for the web and media experience without becoming too large to be discretely transportable? Could it be the one connectivity device to replace your phone and your tablet, as well as your car's GPS or your video camera?
Lenovo just unveiled a trio of tablets at CES - The expected 10" and 7" variety, but also a 5" Phonblet.
Should probably point out Samsung's 7" tablet, pictured above as a size reference, was replaced with a 7.7" tablet (shown below) near the 8" to 8.5" I'd previously proposed as an ideal size. Including it now, since it's as close to that target as the 8.9"ers I listed.
On the camera/phone side of things, HTC and Sony rolled out some megapixels at CES.
~ HTC unveiled the TitanII with the same 4.7" screen as the Titan mentioned above, but a whopping 16MP camera. What's odd, though, is it pairs good still shot potential with pedestrian 720p video capture.
~ Sony unveiled the Xperia ion and its 4.6" screen. It has a 12MP camera and 1080p video capture, making it a stout replacement to any average digital zoom camera. Another neat feature, along the Xperia lines, is Playstation Certification. But like other sub-5"ers, the screen's too small. The PSP/Vita has a 5" screen and that's borderline effective without the need to add control buttons to the touchscreen.http://www.engadget.com/2012/01/09/sony-xperia-ion-att/
Also, there's been a handful of other about 4.5" phones revealed. What was an 'oversized' rarity, now seems to be finding its way into every manufacturer's stable, though they're still much too small to be a phonblet.
To get back to the OP; the Galaxy Note with its 5.3" screen and Lenovo S2 5.0" are the closet things I've seen to phonblets. They have acceptable size, though another half inch minimum is really needed. They run Android, allowing them to be a good GPS replacement like an iPhone and unlike crap Windows phones. There's no word on the S2's camera, but the Note has above-average camera/phone ability with its 8MP/1080p video, yet sub-average as a full camera replacement.
Here's hoping there's more to be revealed at CES.
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