Phablets are mobile devices that walk the line between being a smartphone and a tablet, hence the name. By definition, it is any pocket-sized mobile device larger than the average smartphone, with a screen size of above 5.5 inches. If it meets this criterion, it is a phablet. If the screen reaches a size larger than 7 inches, the device falls into the tablet category.
Naturally, complex games require more screen real-estate, and as mobile play surges, many users are asking themselves if phablets are the way to go and which are the best ones for both modern gaming and online casino games.
The main reason why these phones are an excellent choice for gamers is that their size allows for convenience while providing better specifications than your standard smartphone. Phablets offer more storage, larger screens, and faster processors, all essential components for a quality gaming experience. Even a Stylus Pen can come in handy, as many titles put its existence to good use, such as Zelda, Advance Wars, and Trauma Center. Due to these elements, you can often hear users refer to these devices as smartphones on steroids.
At the end of 2017, a forecast from the International Data Corporation claimed that the number of phablet units would reach 1 billion worldwide in 2021, with Android-based devices leading the way. In 2020, Global Industry Analysts sent out a report saying that that estimate was off by 172 million units and that the number in the US in 2020 is at 222 million. However, the report does say that the global number in 2027 should reach 2.5 billion. So, their popularity is not in question.
Seeing as they are all the rage, and the phablet offer is growing each month, below, we list some quality options for mobile gamers.
Asus ROG Phone 3
Hardcore PC gamers know and respect the Asus brand, especially those who have made attempts to build a desktop gaming machine. Renowned for its quality products, the Taiwanese company has amassed over 1,800 awards for its design, innovation, and performance. In recent years, they’ve shifted their sights and talents onto the mobile market. In 2018, when Asus decided to create the ROG Phone, it asked Qualcomm to overclock its Snapdragon 845 processor to produce the fastest phone ever. Two years later, when the ROG Phone 3 came out, its release came with a lot of hype.
The ROG 3 is not a cheap phone, but it offers many bangs for its buck. If you opt for the 16GB RAM, 512GB storage option, it will cost you around $1,200. However, you’ll get the first phone with the Snapdragon 865 Plus processor. You’ll also get a 144Hz display and a 6,000mAh battery. It doesn’t have wireless charging, water-resistance, or a built-in headphone jack, but it’s a fair trade when you consider what you get in terms of performance. It is a phone you won’t see around much because it doesn’t cater to mainstream users, but it’s likely the premium option on the market for gaming purposes.
Xiaomi Black Shark 3
When many hear the words China and smartphone in the same sentence, they think of Huawei. One of the industry’s Android juggernauts. However, Xiaomi is the largest smartphone company in China and is the fourth-largest smartphone manufacturer in the world. In April of 2018, they released their Black Shark phone to target those who wanted to get the Snapdragon 845 chipset at a reasonable price. With 8GB RAM and 128GB storage, the device seemed like an excellent choice for gamers, even though the rest of its features were not exceptional.
In March of 2020, the third edition of the series, the Xiaomi Black Shark 3, hit the market almost two years later. With a 6.67-inch display, the Snapdragon 865 chipset, a reliable cooling solution, 12GB of RAM, and an unusual exterior, it is a product that should satisfy members of the mobile gaming community looking for an affordable yet fast device. At a price of around $700, in no way is the Black Shar 3 a horrible deal. However, its battery life is only average; it has no wireless charging, and 90 Hz unavailable in many games.
Those with deeper pockets can opt to get the Pro version, which is a gamer’s delight. Though, due to its 1440p 7.1-inch display, it is treading on tablet territory. Know that the Pro version has a 60-FPS limit, which is frustrating, given that popular titles such as Dead Trigger 2 can go up to 120 FPS. That said, if you pay around $765 for the Pro version, you cannot complain, as you get a lot for your money.
Nubia RedMagic 5G
Nubia Technology is another Chinese company that is not a name on everyone’s tongue but produces quality phones. Originally a subsidiary of ZTE, in 2015, the Shenzhen-based brand became an independent company. Three years later, it launched RedMagic, its gaming sub-brand. In March of 2020, the RedMagic 5G phone brought into the world a gaming powerhouse at a bargain price.
One look at this phone’s specification, and it becomes clear who it targets. It has a 6.65-inch display, with a refresh rate of 144 Hz and a touch-sampling rate of 240 Hz. It, too, boasts the Snapdragon 865 chipset, complete with liquid cooling, and it comes in an 8GB RAM/128GB of storage version or the 12GB/256GB one. The first should run you about $650, while the latter falls in the $750 range.
This device is not a jack of all trades. Meaning, there’s a trade-off to it featuring some of the mentioned specs. It is not energy efficient. If you do not have a power bank in your home, your gaming session won’t last long. It also has no memory expansion and features an 18-watt charger instead of a 55-watt one. All that taken into consideration, for its price, it’s a terrific option if you plan on using it for games. Its craftsmanship is impressive, its LDDR5 memory fast, and it has a lot of gaming accessories.