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Samsung Galaxy Mega launches, takes on Asus FonePad

Samsung Galaxy Mega launches, takes on Asus FonePad

Mega by name, mega by nature.

Samsung has unveiled its latest ginormous phone, the 6.3in Samsung Galaxy Mega. But, rather than a new flagship, this is a cut-price model for those that want Big on a budget.

With dimensions of 167.6 x 88 x 8.0mm (199g) the new handset is essentially an oversized Samsung Galaxy S3 with a rather-last-year dual-core 1.7GHz Exynos processor at its heart, a 720p resolution screen at its front and an 8-megapixel camera on its rear. This compares to a quad-core processor, 1080p screen and 13MP camera on the Galaxy S4.

Unlike previous giant Samsung phones, this handset doesn't feature a stylus, plus its screen is LCD rather than the company's normal choice of AMOLED.

While not packed with the absolute greatest tech, the phone will feature Samsung's latest software features including the clearly useful S Translator and split screen feature first shown on its stylus-toting Galaxy Note handsets. This allows for split screen views in some apps such as email, messages, MyFiles, S Memo and S Planner, which helps to make the most of the large screen.

It also includes the rather less clearly useful S Travel trip planner, S Voice voice activated helper and Air View. Air View allows the user to interact with the screen without actually touching it, which the phone uses for things like previewing pictures in the gallery app or preview scanning through videos.

Perhaps of most interest are the inclusion a microSD card slot (to go alongside the 8GB or 16GB of internal memory), 1.5GB RAM and a whopping 3,200mAh battery, all of which could make this a great multimedia device for long journeys. Bluetooth 4.0 and 4G are also both supported and the phone will run a Samsung-customised version of Android 4.2.

The Samsung Mega comes very shortly after the announcement of the Asus Fonepad, which is similarly an enormous phone, this time with a 7in screen. It is essentially the Google Nexus 7 - which Asus manufactured - with voice capabilities added. Crucially, though, it is set to cost just £179.99.

We're also expecting the Samsung Galaxy Mega to be fairly modestly priced but not perhaps at that low level. Samsung has yet to offically confirm what it will charge.

Are you intrigued by the prospect of a very large phone on a potentially low budget - we certainly are? Let us know your thoughts in the comments.

16 Comments

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mi1ez 12th April 2013, 16:37 Quote
I like my big screen S3 but doubt I'd want to go any bigger than 5"...
TheDodoKiller 12th April 2013, 16:56 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by mi1ez
I like my big screen S3 but doubt I'd want to go any bigger than 5"...

Whereas me, typing this on a note 2, wants a wider screen than I have now, but I don't want to compromise on power. I do, however think that the 'S pen' is a bit of a gimmick; I don't use it all that often, so I wouldn't be missing that.
mi1ez 12th April 2013, 16:58 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by TheDodoKiller
Quote:
Originally Posted by mi1ez
I like my big screen S3 but doubt I'd want to go any bigger than 5"...

Whereas me, typing this on a note 2, wants a wider screen than I have now, but I don't want to compromise on power. I do, however think that the 'S pen' is a bit of a gimmick; I don't use it all that often, so I wouldn't be missing that.

I have to admit, I've never really handled anything larger, let alone lived with one so could potentially be converted!
KidMod-Southpaw 12th April 2013, 16:59 Quote
Hmm, this is definitely very interesting. The price sounds great but I can't help but think that whoever buys this will be longing for more power very soon after.
roundyz 12th April 2013, 20:19 Quote
Sounds specs like the first gnote. I have this and it has very ample power.
DriftCarl 13th April 2013, 10:03 Quote
I must admit I have now got use to the size of my galaxy note after a year of ownership. it doesnt look at big to me now. I cant see going much bigger though than what my note is. I have a year left on my contract so I guess I will wait for the S5 or note4 :)
DriftCarl 13th April 2013, 10:03 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by DriftCarl
I must admit I have now got use to the size of my galaxy note after a year of ownership. it doesnt look at big to me now. I cant see going much bigger though than what my note is. I have a year left on my contract so I guess I will wait for the S5 or note4 :)
I dont use the stylus either.
Tangster 15th April 2013, 05:25 Quote
How would someone even use a 6.3" or 7" phablet? I have great difficulty imagining my using my Nexus 7 as a phone given it's 3/4 the size of my head. I want some reasonable size, but decent build quality and spec phones back on the market. Bring back 4.3"!
Zinfandel 15th April 2013, 05:35 Quote
Maybe the point of these things is to have earphones/mic connected as I don't know... My mate looks ridiculous speaking into his note. It reminds me of that Dom Jolly sketch.

HELLO, YES I'M IN A CINEMA!
Jaybles 15th April 2013, 13:06 Quote
I won't buy a phone larger than 4.5 inches because it is just impractically large. And I have extremely large hands. My current phone is a Lumia 800 at 3.8" and I'm wary about upgrading to the 4.3" 720. What use could such a large phone have?
yodasarmpit 15th April 2013, 13:34 Quote
I fail to understand how this can be marketed as a phone, when in reality it is a tablet with phone functionality.
I already consider the S3 as being too large for a phone, so this just doesn't appeal to me at all.
maverik-sg1 15th April 2013, 14:12 Quote
When I first heard that Asus were bringing out a 7" Phablet I chuckled - then I watched their promo video, and apart from all the usual BS, it did bring to my attention one very important point:

I use the 'smart' functions of my phone (replying to emails, surfing the interwebz, social networking, games etc...) much more than I use it for phonecalls, then of the time I use it for calls - more than 85% of that time I am making calls in-car (via in-car Bluetooth) or at home....I do find the limitations of using the smart functions of the phone is the screen size.

So it brought about the question:

Given that I use the screen more than I use the phone, how bad is holding a 7" phablet to your head?

So to put this to the test - I got the kids kindle fire HD and pretended it was phone and held it to my head - I am 6'2" tall and less than slight in build - sure it looks a bit weird maybe a little unnatural right now, but the unit was solid in my hand and from a functional perspective a phone this size would work...I passed it to my missus to try, at 5'5" tall and slight of build it probably highlights that 7" is about as big as people can manage, still it fitted well in her hands and would still work.

My thoughts are:

As technology develops further and the 'smart' functions integrate more with our lives, the options to have a larger screen becomes more desireable (high speed 4g or increased wifi spots increase this desire especially if video calling becomes a more capable mainstream function than niche) are either manufacturers get innovative with phones that have extendable screens (telescopic? Fold-out?) ..... or we embrace 7" phablets or do we carry/use both tablets and phones?
Shirty 15th April 2013, 14:17 Quote
Bluetooth aside, there are two glaring issues with this device.

1) It's not portable enough to be a useful phone for 99% of people.
2) It is exponentially more likely to break if you do carry it around everywhere.

I was one of the early adopters of the "phablet" with a Dell Streak, and whilst it was a fine mobile browsing/gaming device, looked good and made phone calls, it was also impossible not to break on several occasions.

So I did the sensible thing and moved to a smaller smartphone and got a free Nexus 7 into the bargain.
roundyz 15th April 2013, 21:08 Quote
I don't get why people say that the phone looks silly against thier head when a standard home phone headset is larger and nobody felt a fool using those.
Tyinsar 15th April 2013, 23:40 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by maverik-sg1
...I use the 'smart' functions of my phone ... much more than I use it for phonecalls, ...
I suspect that is true for a great number of users - perhaps even the majority. Additionally many of those that use them for a lot of calls often use some form of Bluetooth earpiece (or in-car Bluetooth as you mentioned).

I don't own a "smart phone"; I sit in front of a computer most of my work day and have more than one at home as well as a tablet so I haven't felt that I needed one (plus data plans in Canada are stupidly expensive). If / when I buy a "smart phone" it will most likely be a phablet. It's the option that makes the most sense to me.
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