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Would you buy an Apple ‘phablet’?

Jan 08, 2013


In the iPhone's case, is bigger really better?

FORTUNE -- When Apple launched the iPhone 5 last September, it offered what some Apple (aapl) faithful had long clamored for: a larger, 4-inch screen. But should Jony Ive and his industrial team think even bigger like say, 4.5, even 5-inches?

Enter the "Phablet," a Reuters story reports is the latest smartphone phenomenon: smartphones with screens so large they verge on tablet territory. (Thus, the super-awkward marketing catchphrase.) As unwieldly and off-putting as they may seem to some, such devices are taking off.

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Reuters points out that the 4.8-inch-sized Samsung Galaxy S3 was the bestselling smartphone during third quarter 2012. And Barclays estimates shipments of gadgets with displays 5-inches or larger will spike nearly nine-fold to 228 million between now and 2018. Currently, phablets are very popular in the Asia-Pacific region, with countries like Japan and South Korea expected by analysts to be big markets of opportunity.

Historically, Apple has been very slow to upgrade the screen size of its popular smartphone. It took the company five years to go from 3.5- to 4-inches, after all. "By making the screen taller, but not wider, you can see more of your content, but still comfortably use it with one hand," Ive explained in a promotional Apple video.

Still, the idea of a jumbo-sized iPhone may be attractive to some. What say say you? If Apple let loose an Apple "phablet," would you pick one up? Weigh in below.

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