July 31, 2012 1:03 pm

Rebecca Murtagh

iPhone Getting Larger, iPad Getting Smaller – Why Not Merge Into One Smart Hybrid Mobile Device?

Apple is expected to finally release the much-anticipated iPhone 5 on September 12, 2012.

At the same time, ZDnet has shared that rumors are swirling that Apple will also release a smaller iPad called iPad Mini.

Why not combine the two?
A hybrid mobile device wouldn’t have to be an Apple iOS device to be a winner. Google has good saturation with the Android platform and the new Nexus 7 Tablet with the help of ASUS. Device makers have demonstrated their ability to make smaller tablets. ASUS Padfone was revealed at Mobile World Congress early 2012 running on Android Ice Cream Sandwich, which is essentially a 3-piece hardware combo, which is definitely an impressive combo approach that validates the logic of making mobile computing and smartphone capability more integrated. We have yet to see an all-in-one device on the marketplace.

View ASUS Padfone – All in one smartphone tablet video:

Is the line between smartphones, carriers and mobile computing too difficult to cross?

Consumers continue to embrace the tablet at astounding speed. Mobile device usage is skyrocketing. Cisco’s recent Visual Networking Index (VNI) Global Mobile Data Traffic Forecast Update projects mobile devices surpassing desktop access to internet data in 2012.

Tablets get smaller as Phones Get Bigger

Tablets came into the market with 10 inch screens, but have continued to get smaller to compete against the popular Kindle Fire.

A 7 inch tablet may be a little large to be holding up to one’s ear. However, adding smartphone functionality, video, voice and headset compatibility to any one of these devices could surely give a 4 inch smartphone a run for the money.

Where is the 7 Inch Tablet/SmartPhone Hybrid Device?

There are a multitude of 7 inch tablets on the marketplace. Google Nexus, Kindle Fire, Samsung Galaxy Tab, and now possibly an iPad Mini. Add to this A-list the countless tablet devices being sold by the mobile carrier and computing companies and it seems almost crazy someone has not created the combo device yet.

Make the Tablet Smarter

Why isn’t one super-device integrating tablet and smartphone functionality? They appear to be so close that this upcoming Apple release almost seems contradictory in terms, don’t you think?

So, why wouldn’t Apple, or someone, integrate the technology to merge the best of the two to create the ultimate mobile device. No doubt that’s where we are heading.

A combo device seems like a home run to me. The technology is there. The form factor combining the features has yet to be launched.

Are Mobile Carriers The Barrier to Creating a Hybrid Phone Tablet Combo Device?

I suspect the absence of a smartphone-tablet combo device has more to do with the connection between mobile carriers and their devices, used to lock in customers than it does with device makers being slow to identify this opportunity.

Wouldn’t it be great if you could purchase the device independently, then choose the mobile service provider that best met your needs? You can outside the U.S.

What am I missing?
Would you buy/use a smartphone/tablet combo device?

About the Author

Rebecca Murtagh: Human First Futurist, CEO & Founder of Human AI Institute, winner of the Inc. Magazine Power Partner Award.

Rebecca leverages decades of experience working with Fortune 500, Silicon Valley, Wall Street, Mains Street, global brands and startup entrepreneurs to help executives, their teams, and entrepreneurs leverage their genius through Human AI to improve productivity, collaboration, creativity and job satisfaction for optimum performance and long-term success.

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