Phablets are here to stay! Just kidding -- it's too soon to tell if the hybrid phone-tablet trend will become a standard, but the category will soon add the Asus Fonepad Note FHD 6 to its growing landscape.
The Android 4.2 phablet is similar to the Asus Fonepad, which has recently become commercially available in Asia, but features a smaller 6-inch Super IPS+ LCD screen with a higher 1,920x1,080-pixel resolution. Unlike its predecessor, the Fonepad Note FHD 6 is designed with a stylus, which makes use of baked-in software provided by Asus.
Other specs include 8GB or 16GB of internal storage plus a microSD card slot, 3G capabilities, a 1.6GHz dual-core Intel Atom Z2560 processor, 2GB RAM, and a front-facing 1.2-megapixel camera and 8-megapixel rear-facing camera.
It's hard to avoid the similarities between the newer, smaller Asus Fonepad and the Samsung Galaxy Note 2. The two phablets share a middle name and stylus-inclusive designs, but the Note 2 has a smaller 5.5-inch 1,280x720-pixel resolution AMOLED display with a pixel density of 267 ppi (pixels per inch). In comparison, the new Fonepad Note FHD 6 has a larger, higher-resolution display and pixel density of 367 ppi.
The Asus phablet boasts superior screen specs but the Galaxy Note 2 may still have a leg up in performance. It houses Samsung's own zippy 1.6GHz quad-core Exynos 4 processor and features LTE capabilities -- something the Fonepad FHD 6 unfortunately lacks. The exclusion of 4G may not be detrimental, but in a burgeoning market that is competing with a variety of successful smartphones, every useful spec counts.
The sparse, yet expanding, phablet market is still finding its bearings with what looks good, feels right, and works well for consumers. The Asus Fonepad Note FHD 6 seems like a step in the right direction. Pricing and availability have yet to be announced, so check back soon for updates.