World+Dog to demand ever larger tablet-phones
We're not speaking to people on our phones, these days, we're mostly browsing the web. And that, says market watcher ABI Research, is driving demand for devices that lie in the grey area between smartphones and tablets.
Come 2015, shipments of these big-screen phones or small tablets - or, as we used to call them, Mobile Internet Devices, or MIDs - will exceed 208m units, ABI reckons.
For comparison, some 488.5m smartphones shipped in 2011 as a whole, according to Strategy Analytics, another market watcher. That figure is expected to increase year on year through 2016, so bigger screen smartphones are clearly not going to dominate the segment.
Samsung's Galaxy S III
That said, it's hard to predict future demand because there are so few big-screen phones at the moment. Samsung has launched but isn't yet shipping the 4.8in Galaxy S III, but it's had the 5in Note out for some months now. Others are following it.
ABI defines this hybrid sector by screen size: devices with a 4.6in screen or larger, up to 5.5in. But should we include four-inchers, as the iPhone 5 is rumoured to be?
ABI quite rightly points out that the browsing experience is better on a 5in screen than, say, a 3.5in display, a common size. But bigger devices are less comfortable to use up to the ear as phones.
Then again, almost all smartphone users, by definition, have made the transition from tiny 11 x 4 x 1cm voicephones to much larger touchscreen devices, so who's to say they won't move up to bigger gadgets with equal enthusiasm?
Or will simply put up with it because that's all they're offered? ®
Re: these things need a proper new name
oh, how about, umm... "PDA" :-)
Note this ...
My Samsung Galaxy Note is the best phone / pocket computer I've ever seen or used. It fits comfortably in my hand and is a pleasure to use. All other smartphones now seem too small to my eye. That said, my female partner can't easily hold the Note because her hands are slightly too small and therefore she's waited for the SIII which is perfect for her.
Bigger phones.....Stop this madness!!
Bigger phones.....Stop this madness!!
"We're not speaking to people on our phones, these days, we're mostly browsing the web. And that, says market watcher ABI Research, is driving demand for devices that lie in the grey area between smartphones and tablets."
No..No...No.....most phones are asleep for much of the day and are mainly employed, as an uncomfortable bulge around the trouser department. Sitting down with one in your pocket is becoming a nightmare!
Please make one the size of the Orange San Fransisco but with the power of the Gallaxy s3. Trust me the demand is there.
Dell Streak, Galaxy Note
The Dell Streak (5" screen) was the first in this category - it was very good, but not supported well by Dell. I'm now on a Galaxy Note (5.3" screen) and it's great - the screen makes it great to use on the web and for applications. Vastly better support & professionalism from Samsung than we had from Dell.
Re: bigger != better
I'm also sick of it - there aren't enough choices. I want a top-spec phone that's the same size as my current Nexus One (and also, shocking though it is, the most successful smartphone - the iphone). No such thing exists. If I want decent build quality, all mod cons (top-of-the-line processor, bluetooth 4, high-res screen etc.) then I have to get a massive device. I looked at the HTC One S thinking it was the smaller version of the One X but it's huge! There's no way I could reach the top of the screen with my thumb. So now I'm looking at legacy devices like the Sensation and Desire, which have underpowered processors for ICS (which I need).
Paris natch, for a comment about whether size is important