Whilst portability was the main selling point of the original mobile phones, today’s smartphones are now going against this idea by being larger and more complex than ever. Whilst that might sound like a complaint, the ‘phablet’ phenomenon that has taken the phone world by storm has allowed for incredibly powerful technology to be taken everywhere and anywhere.
Phablets are the ideal blend of phones and tablet, combining portability and power in an unprecedented way. With them becoming some of the most-used phones on the market, it can be tough to find the best one for you. Here’s the pick of the best released in 2016.
With a 5.5-inch display, the LG G4 is on the smaller end of the phablet spectrum. Despite this, it’s still well worth of the title thanks to its impressive specs and slightly lower cost. The display is Quad HD, making it vastly superior when compared to a standard LCD screen. Despite being an older model than many of the phones mentioned here, the LG G4 still holds its own when it comes to power as well, making its worthwhile.
One of the biggest reasons to own a phablet is that it’s essentially a computer that you can carry around without it being too bulky. If you spend a lot of your working life on a laptop or a tablet, you may find you can get a lot of the same tasks done on a phone such as the LG G4.
iPhone 7 Plus
The iPhone has taken the mobile world by storm over the last decade. Recently, Apple has started the trend of releasing a larger version of every model it puts out, thereby making its mark on the phablet world. The iPhone 7 Plus is the newest version of Apple’s line, offering a larger 5.5-inch display compared to the 4.7 inches of the standard 7.
Apple has made the larger version of the phone the one to get due a number of extra features. As well as the larger screen making day-to-day tasks easier, the 7 Plus features a larger battery than the standard model, meaning you can go longer between charges. The Plus also has with it a dual-camera system, making the zoom twice as effective and allowing you to take photos with more depth. With the iPhone 7 Plus, Apple has the phablet market covered.
Samsung Galaxy S7 Edge
Whilst it’s best not to mention the Samsung Galaxy Note 7, the S7 Edge has been holding its own as one of the best phablets to buy this year. Whilst not as big as the ill-fated Note 7, the 5.5-inch display packs a huge punch due to its AMOLED technology, which is used in Samsung’s 4K TVs. This makes it a phablet that’s not only hugely powerful, but is also something you’ll want to want to use more than a tablet as well.
With the size of the S7 Edge comes the Edge feature, which makes the screen curve around the device. This was previously present in both the standard and larger models (as was the normal screen) but is only available on the S7 Edge. This has the side-effect of meaning you’re stuck with the Edge screen if you want the larger model, which might be frustrating to those who want a larger phone but don’t want the gimmick screen. That said, the S7 Edge is one of the best phones of its type you can buy, and essential if you’re into Android devices.
Microsoft Lumia 950 XL
Whilst Microsoft has enjoyed arguable success with its smartphone range thanks to it running neither Android or iOS, the Lumia 950 XL is a genuinely good entry in the line. With a display that spans 5.7 inches, the 950 is on the larger side when it comes to phones, but this makes it work perfectly as a phablet.
Whilst you might think the Windows platform is an issue when it comes to mobile (with the majority of phones being Android, and Apple’s using iOS), it’s actually effective as a phone if you’re a big proponent of working on the go. If you’re baked into the Windows ecosystem like some are with Apple, the 950 XL gives you a number of perks such as cloud storage photos as well as seamless integration with Microsoft Office apps.
Whilst the Microsoft OS might be a bit thin on the ground when it comes to apps, the 950 XL is a great phone for work as well as being technologically impressive in its own right.
Google Nexus 6P
The recent Google Nexus 6P is Google’s first foray into the smartphone hardware world (with LG previously making Google-branded phones) and has already made a big impact. The 5.7-inch display packs in a 4K resolution, meaning the 6P is no slouch when compared to similar phones.
Fans of Android, Google’s mobile OS, will feel right at home here, with the Nexus 6P taking everything you love about the platform and ramping it up. Google is baked into the phone and takes charge of nearly everything you do with it, from photos to docs to games. If you’re someone who is used to the Google ecosystem, the 6P requires almost no setting up - just sign in and you’re away.
The Google Nexus 6P is overall an ideal phablet - one that combines cutting-edge technology with features that make work and leisure viable options when on the go.