There is no current item of technology I understand less than the phablet. I mean, I get why it exists, and I get what it does. And if you’re paying for a 4G connection you might as well condense that to one item and take phone calls. But there’s no way to use it for phone purposes without looking silly, and the screens are generally just a little too small to be actually useful. Nonetheless, looking silly is apparently popular enough that the Galaxy Note 3 is on the way from AT&T.
Arriving October 1st
AT&T will start shipping at the beginning of next month, and by all accounts, it’ll be pretty much what we’ve come to expect from the series. It’s a bit lighter and thinner, with a 5.7 inch AMOLED screen, 2.3 GHz quad-core processor, the standard stuff for a top-grade smartphone.
Oddly, the biggest deal they’re making about this is that it’s got plenty of Samsung’s custom software, with the “Magazine” UX taking front and center, and Scrapbook, S Finder, and Samsung Smart Switch being talked up as the key components. Possibly this is because Samsung is planning on introducing Tizen at some point to compete with Android. But advertising the software you stick on the phone doesn’t seem a great choice.
But Why Buy It?
Let me save you a lot of money, as this thing’s list price is a hilarious $720 but reduced to “just” $300 with a two-year contract. Wait for Google to release the Nexus 7’s new LTE version, which should hit the streets before the end of October, and for phone calls, use the various VoIP tools. You’ll get a better tablet with a bigger screen, probably better call quality, spend the same amount of money, and get the convenience you’re looking for. Or buy a Galaxy Note 2, up above, and do the same thing.
Or, if looking like a dork is still part of the equation here, get the tablet, use it just for apps, and just buy a flip-phone. Yep, they’re still out there! They’re fifteen bucks! Seriously!
Dan Seitz is an obsessive nerd living in New England. He lives in the Boston area with a fiancee, a dog, a cat, and far too many objects with processors.