Smartphones today are a lot larger than they used to be. And a lot more capable. Screen sizes were firmly short of five inches, and anything larger was considered a phablet. However, with 5.5-inch screens becoming the norm, it takes a lot more for a phone to be classified as a phablet. With the newly launched Xiaomi Mi Max 2, it’s display is 14 mm shorter than a 7-inch tablet.
Our obsession with large screens
We’ve all seen people walking around with giant tablets to their ears. Probably also laughed a bit at the sight. There’s a reason why tablets with voice calling have gained popularity in India. We’re a country of media consumers. Whether it’s reading online, watching videos on YouTube, Amazon Prime Video, Hotstar and Netflix, or even just trying to get some work done on a spreadsheet, we’re fans of phones with big screens.
But let’s be fair, it’s all well and good till you have to put your phone to your face, or in your pocket. And while we’ve all dreamed of owning a big-screen phone, we’re quickly brought back down to earth when we consider the practical aspects of it.
Now, there are some significant advantages to having a big-screen phone such as the Xiaomi Mi Max 2. The screen is fantastic for everything from watching videos to productivity usage, such as working on spreadsheets and word documents. The bigger screen space also means that you’ll have an easier time reading on the phone, or navigating on Google Maps, thanks to the better map visibility. ALSO READ: Xiaomi Mi Max 2 First Impressions
Additionally, the advantage of the big battery doesn’t really need to be explained. The Xiaomi Mi Max 2 promises two-day battery life on a single charge, and thanks to Qualcomm Quick Charge 3.0 support with parallel charging, you can get up to 58% of charge, or a whole day of battery life, with just one hour of charging. It’s refreshing to not have to worry about running out of charge, and a definite advantage of the phone.
The Mi Max 2 is a good phone with a great screen, has the excellent Qualcomm Snapdragon 625 under the hood which ensures efficient battery life and reliable mid-range performance, and a battery that goes on and on. Why then am I complaining?
Because we continue to be driven away by the idea of a big phone, simply because of the impracticality attached to owning one. During my use of the phone, it only just about fitted in my pocket, and stopped fitting the minute I added my second phone into said pocket. It also felt a bit foolish to use as a phone, because despite looking more like a phone and less like a tablet, it’s still too large. And finally, it’s firmly a two-handed phone. I simply cannot use it with one hand, requiring both hands to even use the fingerprint sensor to unlock the phone. And while my typical 5.5-inch smartphone might not be the smallest, it is certainly usable on a day-to-day basis.
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So until we, as humans, evolve larger hands, the 6.44-inch smartphone may remain a niche concept only for a select few. The Xiaomi Mi Max 2 might be one of the more successful implementations of the modern idea of a phablet, and its Rs 16,999 price tag and specifications might be geared towards the market, but it will never quite gain the acceptance that the Redmi Note 4 has. It’s unfortunate, but I do believe that the excellent Xiaomi Mi Max 2 is still too large to be taken seriously.