DL AWARDS 2014

Best phablet (above 5.5 inches)

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HTC One Max

It is too easy to say HTC took the best elements of its HTC One smartphone and just amplified it to deliver the One Max. That would be to ignore the upgrades it came up with for its first phablet.

The frame is still aluminium but, instead of a unibody, the company heeds requests for expandable memory and adds a microSD card slot under the removable back.

At the rear panel, it adds a fingerprint sensor for users who crave an extra layer of security. The end result is a bigger phone, and also a better one.


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LG G Flex

As one of the phone makers to not have a phablet in their line of phones, LG could easily have come up with a gigantic device to cater to those who like a big screen.

It goes a step further, by bending the design, to come up with the world’s first curved smartphone screen.

Despite the size of the screen, users do not need acrobatic thumbs to reach the top of the 6-inch device, as the curve reduces this distance.

With a frame that is a better fit in your hand, around the curve of your face and in the back pocket of your jeans, LG has redefined what a large screen can be and should be.

And it has done this while keeping many features of the G2 alive in the G Flex.


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Nokia Lumia 1520

Windows Phone 8 users who wanted a larger display did not have a choice, until Nokia delivered the Lumia 1520.

With a rework of the Windows Phone operating system, Nokia shows how amazing the Windows Phone 8 and its tiles of many sizes can look on a large display.

It topped things off with a 20-megapixel camera on the Lumia 1520, a high-definition screen and expandable memory to the 6-inch device, proving that its designers still have some tricks up their sleeves.


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Samsung Galaxy Note 3

While other smartphone makers were content with focusing on a large-screen experience, Samsung decided to add the experience of using a phablet. Its previous Note outings had the S Pen stylus and multitasking features. The Galaxy Note 3 has merged some of these aspects.

Scribble something on the phone and the software will be able to interpret the information, whether it is a phone number, address or contact. With the S Pen, users have a menu that makes note-taking more natural, whether one is working on two apps simultaneously or circling items on screen to save them for later.


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Sony Xperia Z Ultra

While some phablet makers concentrated on keeping their screens under 6 inches, Sony produced a 6.44-inch behemoth that is pretty thin for its size.

By adding a sharp display and making it waterproof and dustproof like the rest of its Xperia line, Sony shows that a large phone does not mean sacrificing other useful features.

The Z Ultra does not come with a stylus, but the unique feature of the screen means that users can still take notes with a sharp object, such as a pencil.