More than 208 million phablets, a hybrid device that is larger than a smartphone but smaller than a tablet, like the Samsung Galaxy Note, will be shipped globally in 2015, according to analysts from ABI Research, who define phablets as smartphones with a touch-screen size between 4.6" to 5.5".
Despite the slow start for phablet smartphones in 2011 with the launch of Samsung Galaxy Note, the market is at the dawn of the phablet era. HTC, LG, and Huawei will each introduce phablet smartphones in 2012, joining the ranks of Samsung’s Galaxy Note and Google/Samsung Galaxy Nexus. Additionally, another phablet smartphone was released earlier this month, the Samsung Galaxy S3. Global shipments for phablets will increase by a factor of 10 in 2012 from 2011.
Global smartphone unit shipments will soar to around a billion units in 2015, more than double from around 500 million in 2011, according to some market observers. Based on prediction from ABI, 20% of smartphones will have screens larger than 4.6".
“The larger screen sizes make a significant difference to the user’s experience when compared to conventional-sized touchscreens between 3.5" to 4". Additionally, new phablet-styled devices provide an attractive two-in-one device proposition and are beginning to see the competition between these larger smartphone form-factors and media tablets with less than 7" screens," said Joshua Flood, a senior analyst at ABI.
Samsung Electronics sold over five million of its Galaxy Note smartphones from October '11 to April '12, the company said earlier this year. Samsung Galaxy Note has two distinctive features that make it unique compared to other smartphones currently on the market. Firstly, the device sports an ultra large 5.3" multi-touch display with 1280*800 resolution, which enables more convenient browsing and reading experience. Secondly, the product comes with S-Pen stylus that slips into the bottom panel of the phone and can be used in a variety of apps when high precision is needed. The Samsung Galaxy S III does not have a stylus.
The Galaxy Note is based on dual-core ARM Cortex-A9 SoC with 1.5GHz clock-speed (Exynos 4210 or Snapdragon 8255T), is equipped with 5.3” multi-touch LCD screen with 1280*800 resolution; 16GB or 32GB of flash storage; Wi-Fi 802.11a/b/g/n, Bluetooth 3.0 and GSM/HSPA+/GPRS/HSUPA/LTE connectivity. The smartphone features a 8MP rear camera and a 2MP front camera. The device sports 2500mAh battery. The Galaxy Note is based on Android 2.3.6 operating system.