The ‘phablet’ - larger than a conventional smartphone but smaller than a tablet - is expected to prove very popular with manufacturers and retailers this year. According to information and analytics provider IHS, worldwide shipments of these devices are expected to reach 60.4 million units this year, up 136% from the 2012 total of 25.6 million phablets. IHS defines a phablet as a smartphone with a diagonal display measurement of at least 5 inches.
Increasing manufacturing capacity for larger displays and a drop in component prices is expected to result in phablet sales continuing to increase for the next few years. In 2016, 146 million phablet devices are expected to ship worldwide.
Vinita Jakhanwal, director of small and medium displays at IHS iSuppli, said “The move to offer larger-display smartphones reflects the efforts of both device and panel makers to differentiate their products. With consumers demanding more lifelike viewing experiences, the trend to offer such devices makes perfect sense, especially considering the increase in rich content that is being made available on smartphones.”