View Full Version : Phablets?

09-15-2014, 11:54
Is anyone planning on taking a phablet (ginormous phone) with them next year? From what I understand, basically everyone these days is using a smartphone on the trail for multiple functions. Then it seems like others also bring along their tablets. The tablet seems like extra weight with a mostly duplicate function. And things like reading books sounds awful on a phone. I am thinking that a phablet (like the Samsung Galaxy Note) would be a good compromise between the two and am considering picking one up. Anybody else thinking similarly?

09-15-2014, 14:36
If there was a dedicated "backcountry" tablet I would probably take one along with me. It would be nice to have my entire digital library to read. Plus, there a few apps that I bet could be helpful. I would just be scared of taking something to nice or expensive. You have to watch out for Murphy.

09-15-2014, 14:45
My 4.5 inch Moto G was excellent for reading Kindle Books on my Colorado Trail thru hike. I also downloaded the economist each week and listened to the audio edition in camp to keep up with the news while on my hike. This is the first time I took a hike with a smart phone and it was great. Didn't feel it was a chain to the outside world. I just kept it off when not using it and in airplane mode when on. Battery life was good. I rarely used over 10% on any given night in camp.

09-15-2014, 14:54
I currently have a Nexus 5 (with a cracked screen because I decided to risk it and not put a case on it) and it's great for audio, basic web browsing, and almost everything but I couldn't imagine reading books on it. I have a Kindle Fire HD that I use for reading books and it's great. A phablet would split the difference which is why I'm thinking about replacing my Nexus 5 with one. The Note 3 should be relatively cheap on eBay once the 4 comes out in a few weeks

Josh D
09-15-2014, 19:23
I use a samsung galaxy S5 which isn't a whole lot smaller than a Note. I love having it on the trail. I don't see any reason I would need to bring along my tablet as well.

09-15-2014, 19:25
I never thought I would be able to read on a 4.5 inch screen, but it isn't really all that bad at all. Especially with the Kindle app's night mode which also seems to hardly dent the battery. But audiobooks might be a better way to go and consume even less battery.

09-15-2014, 19:44
Maybe I should start giving reading on my phone another shot then. Thanks!

kayak karl
09-15-2014, 21:43
didn't know till now i had a Phablet.

09-15-2014, 21:57
I felt lucky with a Tracphone, and a Thick paperback (Patton), which lasted 500 miles and also served as a pillow. Although it thinned with time as I burnt the read pages to Cook Supper...:)

Angie J Romans
09-17-2014, 19:39
I'm just bringing my old iphone, for only necessary uses/emergancies. Otherwise it'll be turned off. I'm most likely also going to have a book with me...I can't go that long without a book! I think anything else can be left at home

09-21-2014, 13:44
I read on an iPhone 5s all the time and don't find the screen real estate a problem. You can adjust brightness and font size so that you don't really notice the size of the screen. Plus it's smaller than any phablet.

09-21-2014, 15:23
I carry my iPhone, but it's always in airplane mode (top button is broke, so I can't turn it on once I turn it off). It does come out except for pictures or emergencies. If it's just me and my brothers camping somewhere, we might put some music on.

10-10-2014, 09:36
Hi Jred321 and others,
Indeed I'm looking take a phablet when I eventually make it to the AT in, as planed now, 2019. Maybe by then there will actually true phablets being sold in the US market. This is a sore spot for me in that none there none currently being sold. These tablets that have been mentioned are cellular data enabled if purchased with the option but none can make a cellular voice call.

To get a true phablet one must currently buy from an overseas market. I buy one about a year ago and was happy with it until I broke the screen recently. In my effort to replace it with something from local sources I find they are just not available.

I include a link here to the one I bought a year ago. At that time it was $96.00US.

Cheep but it's a downer dealing with foreign sourced electronics.

10-10-2014, 16:05
I've definitely been considering a phablet. Originally I was looking at the nokia lumia 1520 and am now rethinking.

This site is pretty great for comparing phone models, a few of which are phablets.

Unfortunately as I already own a phone and a tablet, this will be a luxury purchase determined by budget closer to my hike date.

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

Ia wonder
10-10-2014, 22:07
GirlfromOz, Thanks for the link for phone evaluations. Heck I've got an old flip phone I'll have to get someone to teach me if I upgrade. :)

Wise Old Owl
10-10-2014, 22:10
KK you cant have one - we are on a phone with the compass magnify glass. It makes everything larger.

10-13-2014, 07:22
Wise Old Owl,
I find holding it close enlarges the scream also :) I'm glad to have trifocals.

Yes, GirlfromOz, good link. They seem to have decided that just being close to 7inches is good enough to let them call them phablets. And sadly, most of the competavly priced ones link to Amazon or EBay and not any retail outlets where a person could go and see what the screen looks like.
I've shifted to looking at http://www.AliExpress.com to see what real completion in the market is producing. Budget considerations drive my selection process too.

10-13-2014, 07:24
Opps, enlarges the screen :) not scream.

10-25-2014, 21:39
I will be bringing my I phone 6 plus fully loaded with movies-books-music.I will also have my AWOL guide on it as well.going to bring my rav power bank that has a (15000mah) to keep this thing charged.

11-01-2014, 02:51
I'm nixing the phablet. The Kindle Paperwhite is the only electronic I need. The battery life is amazing, and I won't be tempted to use it for additional electronic things. For me the trail is disconnecting, and knowing exactly where you are at all times kind of kills the magic of it all. Then again, the most I have ever hiked was 3 weeks, so I might be singing a different tune after 3 months on the trail.

11-01-2014, 21:20
If you get a 7" tablet, it does everything well. Get one that takes a Sim card for data, use a VOIP app and you can make free calls too , and get a free phone # for it.

I work a lot at a rural plant where we have no cellular service, but do have internet. I use a nexus 7 tablet for phone calls over the internet, and have my cell phone voicemail forwarded to google voice so I get messages, etc as well from it when I have no service, which is most of the time there.

11-02-2014, 21:14
I'm taking my kindle b/c the battery lasts way longer than my iPhone battery, so I can read as much as I want. & I put the A.T. guide pdf on it & it works well (the companion too). Plus I can transfer info from my phone to the Kindle if a bunch of emails come in & I want to save battery life on my iPhone.