In a recent post titled Phablet Options: Alternatives to Samsung’s Galaxy Note II, Mr Mo pointed out other alternatives to the massive Galaxy Note II phone/tablet hybrid that Samsung manufactures. The prospects of success for the Galaxy Note line was not very bright when it was first announced and when it was originally released to the public. But today with over 10 Million sold, a second generation model and a tablet line, we can call the Note line a success.

Apparently other manufacturers have woken to to this reality too as they hope to beat Samsung at the phablet game if you permit me to call it that (however weird it might sound). At the ongoing Consumer Electronics Show or CES for short, contenders to the Galaxy Note II have certainly cropped up and  I’ll  try to briefly give a summary of each of them

Sony
XperiaZ_PSM

Sony outed the Xperia Z at the ongoing CES. It is a 5-incher with a 1080p (Full HD) display, 2 gigabytes of RAM, Android 4.1 Jellybean, 13MP camera, HDR Video recording (a first for mobile devices), dust and water resistance and a Quad-core processor clocked at 1.5 GHz.

As you can see, the device is no slouch as it also packs extras such as a new Mobile BRAVIA® Engine, Playstation certification and all sorts of software wizardry. The only downside to this device however is that it has a somewhat small non-removable Li-Ion 2330 mAh battery. This is a major downer when you consider that it has to render images and video on the full HD display.

Still it is more pocket friendly than the Galaxy Note II and perhaps this could also catch on in the crazy world of mobile devices.

Huawei
huawei ascend mate

Huawei also announced a phone that fits and even surpasses the phablet category, the Ascend Mate. This beast is a 6.1 inch device (and you thought the Note II was too big) with a 720p display, 2 gigabytes of RAM, Android 4.1 Jellybean, a quad core processor also clocked at 1.5 GHz, 8MP camera and a massive 4050mAh battery.

As if that wasn’t enough, Huawei also announced the Ascend D2. This guy has a 5-inch, 1080p (Full HD) display, Android 4.1 Jellybean, 13MP camera, water and dust resistance, 32GB of inbuilt storage capacity, quad-core processor and a 3000mAh capacity battery.

huawei d2

The only downside I could find with Huawei’s offerings is with the Ascend D2 in that it does not have space for a micro SD card so its storage cannot be expanded. Apart from that, it is also a big contender in the phablet race.

Lenovo
Lenovo, a company known to manufacturer PCs is also entering the phablet market with not one but two of their own offerings. The first is the K900 which is a dual-core device running on an Intel Atom processor. Other phablet-y specs include a 5.5-inch, 1080p (Full HD) display, and a very thin stainless steel polycarbonate unibody design that is just 6.9mm thick.

Lenovo K900

The second device by Lenovo is the IdeaPhone S890 (Weird name right?). The IdeaPhone S890 has a 5-inch display with qHD 540 x 960 resolution, Android 4.2 Jellybean and an 8MP Camera.

IdeaPhone

Conclusion
There used to be phones, then tablet devices, but Samsung disrupted that flow with the massively successful Galaxy Note line. Now other manufacturers are trying to beat them at their own game. The Galaxy Note II still beats them with one thing though and that is the S-Pen.

The S-Pen seems to be the only thing differentiating Samsung from the competition at this stage and it may be a determinant for certain people when shopping for aforementioned phablet devices. One month ago, if you told me that the Samsung Galaxy Note II would have these many challengers, I would have scoffed. Today, not only does it have competitors, one of them (the Huawei Mate) makes the massive Note II look like an S3 in comparison (pic below)

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Now this is what I call competition. Do leave your thoughts and comments below. Cheers!


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