Remember when Samsung unveiled the original Galaxy Note? The device that was built to meld the worlds of a smartphone and tablet, and in doing so shove features of both in a "phone" that had a huge display. A lot of places and people said it would never catch on. It was just too big. Samsung would never make the big screen work!
It's almost funny to think back to that, to all the naysayers. I never even gave the original Galaxy Note a chance as a personal device simply because it was too big. That was only two years ago. Apparently I was just really attached to my 3.5-inch screen phone.
Samsung's third iteration within their smartphone/tablet lineup, the Galaxy Note 3, released earlier this month, and along with it came a bigger screen. At 5.7-inches it's not the biggest, but it's certainly large enough for many to think it's "too big." Especially for their every day phone. The device they pull out of their pocket more than one hundred times, text, make calls with (maybe), or do whatever else they do.
For me, I've grown to realize that I can handle using smaller displays for an extended period of time, especially if I have to for whatever reason, but for the most part I can admit that I need a bigger screen. Something around the 4.7-inch mark, for instance. That seems to be just about perfect.
One of the most popular Android-based devices released this year was LG's G2, and it's got a display bigger than 4.7 inches. At 5.2 inches, it's just slightly smaller than Samsung's original Galaxy Note, a device we were all decrying as too big only two years ago. But apparently time flies when your phones are getting bigger, and the G2 seems tiny compared to Samsung's Galaxy Mega 6.3.
But LG doesn't want to be left out of the game completely, so they've got their own plans for a huge smartphone. It's called the G Flex, and we originally started hearing the most stable of rumors earlier in October. It didn't take long before we started to see leaked images of the device. The G Flex is basically another version of their popular G2, but there are some pretty drastic changes.
For example, the G Flex has a huge curved display. Similar to Samsung's Galaxy Round, but at the same time not really. This curve is from top-to-bottom, rather from side-to-side. The curve is quite noticeable, and it probably would at any screen size. But the other difference is in the size of the display: at six inches, the G Flex has a huge screen. Just look at the picture above. You can tell the phone is massive.
The six-inch OLED panel is also "only" 720p, rather than the 1080p HD screen that's built into LG's G2.
I get that our smartphone displays are getting bigger. Nothing can stop it, apparently. It's an inexorable movement from manufacturers, and apparently people keep buying them so they just keep pushing the limit. But at six inches we're definitely in the tablet area, as far as I'm concerned, and I think we're long overdue for a line in the sand. We need to make some clear distinctions here, because I'm tired of seeing huge smartphones just for the sake of huge smartphones.
Just look at Nokia's Lumia 1520. Huge, and just for the sake of being big. There's no other reason for it. While Samsung is busy making use of the 5.7-inch display in the Galaxy Note 3 thanks to tablet-inspired features and the S Pen, so many other manufacturers are just trying to make big phones to make them, to try to get some attention, when they seem to be missing the point entirely.
LG may not be the same, though. We don't know a lot about the G Flex, so the device could feature some new tweaks to LG's proprietary software to make it feature some tablet-like features, and maybe they'll even include standard stylus support. It's doubtful at this point, but anything is still possible.
For me, the LG G Flex is a cool idea, but it's just too big. Every time I see that picture above I can't help but laugh and shake my head. I do the same thing when I see images of the Lumia 1520, or Samsung's Galaxy Mega 6.3. I'd have a different reaction if they were being marketed as tablets, or were tablets. But, as smartphones, they just make me laugh.
I'm curious to see the G Flex in the plastic "flesh," and to see how it feels in the hand and how it performs. But with a six-inch display, whether it's curved or not, I don't think I could ever make it my daily driver. Then again, maybe the curve will make it workable. I'll just have to wait and see.
What are your thoughts on LG's upcoming G Flex? Are you excited to see how it stacks up against the competition? Or are you uninterested in the device due to its size, or the curved display? Let me know what you think.