And just like that, the phablet war began. Thanks to information leaks before the start of CES 2013, there wasn’t a whole lot of mystery surrounding the handsets Huawei was planning to show off. Luckily, that didn’t discredit just how impressive those devices can be up close. The Ascend Mate made a particularly sizable splash, likely because it’s just so darn big. With 6.1-inch screen, which consumes most of the space on the device, built into a chasis just 9.9mm thick (not to mention features seemingly aimed to directly counter those of the Galaxy Note 2), the Ascend Mate is the newest and biggest competitor in the phablet market.
Samsung is still riding the waves of success from 2012, but it’s a new year and the throne is up for grabs. We might not see the Ascend Mate in North America for awhile still, but we can sure speculate on what will happen when it arrives. Check below for the full rundown of specs for the Ascend Mate and the reigning phablet champion, the Galaxy Note 2.
Galaxy Note 2
|Size||163.5 x 85.7 x 9.9 (mm)||151.1 x 80.5 x 9.4 (mm)|
|Screen||6.1-inch LCD||5.5-inch Super AMOLED|
|Resolution||1920 x 1080||1280×720 pixels|
|OS||Android 4.1||Android 4.1 with TouchWiz UI|
|SD Card Slot||No||Yes|
|Processor||1.8GHz dual-core processor||1.6GHz, quad-core Exynos|
|Connectivity||Wi-Fi, 4G LTE, HSPA+||Wi-Fi, 4G LTE, HSPA+|
|Camera||Front 1.0MP, Rear 8MP||Front 1.9MP, Rear 8MP|
|Bluetooth||Yes, version 4.0||Yes, version 4.0|
|Charger||Micro USB||Micro USB|
|Marketplace||Google Play Store||Google Play Store|
|Availability||China: 2/13, North America: Unknown||AT&T, Sprint, T-Mobile, Verizon|
Conclusion: If there is one thing the Ascend Mate has on its side, it’s sheer size. Not only is its screen over half an inch larger, but it also has a higher screen-to-frame ratio than the Galaxy Note 2. The battery, with 4050mAh, is also undeniably impressive. Add to that the promised battery saving technology from Huawei and you’ll have a bigger battery that runs more efficiently. The Mate does feel a little underpowered, and the lack of an SD card slot is definitely a negative. But man, that screen.
The Galaxy Note 2 also has the support of Samsung’s well-liked S Pen stylus and the powerful NFC sharing technology. The Ascend Mate comes with a couple unique features not included in our spec chart as well. Magic Touch allows users to perform actions on the touch screen through clothes or gloves. Did we mention how big that screen is, by the way? All of this is pretty hypothetical for us until there’s a price point and a North American release, but it’s fun to speculate.