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January 11, 2013

Phablets and Tablet PCs, Oh My!

By Brittany Walters-Bearden, TMCnet Contributor

Phablets and PCs that can be used as a tablet was the talk of this year’s Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas. Phablets—a cross between a tablet and a phone—have been the hot commodity in the smartphone market. Samsung launched its first phablet, called the Galaxy Note in 2011, with a 5.3-inch touch-style screen. This was received with great fanfare from users, and Samsung (News - Alert) decided to up the ante by releasing an even bigger phablet, the Samsung Note II, which has a screen that measures 5.55 inches, in the last quarter of 2012.

The popularity of the original Samsung Note saw sales of five million units during the first quarter of 2012 in the United States. By the end of August 2012, there were more than 10 million units purchased by American consumers. As expectations swelled after rumors were heard about a new Samsung Note II being released in October, there were three million units sold in the first 37 days of availability and more than five million in the first two months.

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The popularity of Samsung’s Galaxy Note and Note II have not gone unnoticed, as the Chinese technology company Huawei (News - Alert) announced at CES that it has an even bigger option than the Galaxy Note II to offer users: the Ascend Mate, which features a 6.1-inch screen. For the users who feel that six plus inches is too large, Huawei will be offering a five-inch version, called the Ascend D2.

Computer manufacturing giant, Sony, was the first company to recognize that consumers are using their tablets more and more each day, but often find their tablet lacks the power of a laptop or home personal computer. Sony developed the Vaio Tap 20, which works like a traditional PC, but can be laid down flat to give users an experience similar to a tablet; the Tap 20 has a 20-inch screen. Now, Lenovo (News - Alert) has joined the party with its version of a PC that can work in a tablet mode, the IdeaCentre Horizon. To show Sony that it isn’t necessarily the big guy on the block anymore, the IdeaCentre comes with a 27 inch touch-style screen and has a 39 inch version under development.

Though these tablet PCs are extremely large, there are various versions of more portable tablet PCs available for consumers. But, what would CES (News - Alert) be if it didn’t have the most outrageous sizes and capabilities of consumer electronics being presented in order to make peoples jaws drop and tongues wag?

Want to learn more about the latest in communications and technology? Then be sure to attend ITEXPO Miami 2013, Jan 29- Feb. 1 in Miami, Florida.  Stay in touch with everything happening at ITEXPO (News - Alert). Follow us on Twitter.

Edited by Brooke Neuman
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