Phablets a big draw at Comex 2013

Phablets a big draw at Comex 2013

SINGAPORE - The allure of a single device that allows consumers to view anything from spreadsheets to drama serials and make phone calls proved a draw at Comex 2013, held at Singapore Expo.

The IT and consumer-technology exhibition attracted a total of 780,000 visitors over a four-day period as of 6.30pm yesterday. The event, which was organised by Exhibits Inc, a subsidiary of Singapore Press Holdings, ended at 9pm.

Many were there to snap up bargains on the latest phablets, such as the 16GB Samsung Galaxy Mega with LTE and a 6.3-inch screen for $768 and the 32GB Asus PadFone Infinity with LTE and a 5-inch screen for $898, without plans.

Phablets are giant smartphones with screen sizes of between 5 and 7 inches.

Those who bought phablets yesterday told My Paper that they were enticed by the device's ability to meet multiple needs.

Systems analyst L. Senthilnathan, 38, who bought a Samsung Galaxy Mega phablet with 5.8-inch screen for his wife, said: "It's its two-in-one functionality that interests her. There is now no need to carry both a tablet and a phone."

Phablet retailers at the event were unable to provide sales figures but telcos told My Paper that phablets are gaining increasing momentum.

Ms Cindy Hung, StarHub's assistant vice-president of customer premises equipment, said: "The popularity of such phone-tablet hybrids will continue to gain momentum, as manufacturers introduce more features."

Similarly, M1 has observed customer interest in phablets - mostly 4G-enabled devices with screens of 5 inches and larger.

Mr Johan Buse, SingTel's vice-president of consumer marketing, noted that phablets offer the best of both worlds: the portability of a smartphone and the generous size screen of a tablet, making them ideal for multimedia applications such as videos, e-books and online games.

With more than 650 exhibitors this year, overall sales at the exhibition are expected to reach $76 million. As of 6.30pm yesterday, total sales hit $74.5 million, already exceeding last year's event which recorded sales of $74 million, said Mr Melvin Koh, general manager of Exhibits Inc.

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