| 2 min read

Using Tables as Phonese

I've always been curious about Tablets. I used to own the first version of the Apple iPad but ended up giving it to my younger cousins. It was too big and too heavy. But a few years forward tablets had shrunk both in size and weight, making them viable phone alternatives. Even more so with the advent of so-called phablets, these gadgets can do basic things like email, chat, facebook, gaming, etc... way better than computing devices of yesteryear.

As I've damaged my phone while seascaping (sea water and electronics don't mix well), I've been looking at an excuse to buyalternatives to mobile phones. Should I buy another phablet? A smaller phone? Or maybe just out of curiousity, maybe try to use an actual tablet-sized device and see how I go?

I've held-off buying one. Instead I used an old Galaxy S3 as my phone and see if this smallish phone is good enough. It wasn't. I got so used to a bigger-screened phone that I just found it difficult to use a smaller phone. Fast-forward a few weeks and whilst waiting for my partner in one of the big malls of Jakarta, I accidentally dropped the phone and shattered parts of the screen. No biggie, I'm in Jakarta so perhaps I could find a cheap place and have it repaired. Well, as it turns out cheap repairs don't always work well as I hoped for.

So I was shopping for a tablet and a tablet that caught my eye is the Galaxy Tab S 8.4". The Super AMOLED screen and really tiny build got my attention. It's pretty darn light too. You can't hold it in one hand but general usage is no different to your standard phablet. And since these days most of what I do on the phone is consuming content either by reading books, articles, or looking at gorgeous images at 500px, I thought it's the perfect device for someone like me. There are pros and cons of course, which I've highlighted below, but overall it's perfect for my use-cases.

Here are some pros and cons after using a tablet-as-a-phone in the past quarter or so:


  • The larger Super AMOLED screen makes for great viewing and content consumption - movies, reading, browsing, chatting, videos, etc...

  • A lightweight tablet is very portable and easy to carry in your bag.

  • Maps are so much better especially if you're using Google Maps as an in-car GPS.


  • Too big for chat apps. I talk to my girlfriend plenty of times and typing on these things even with two hands is annoying, and causing a lot of typos. I even contemplated going to back to a smaller phone or phablet because it's much easier to use chat apps there.

  • Some (popular) apps like Instagram don't support landscape mode.

  • Can be unwieldy to hold when you're socializing and waiting for someone's call. For this, I rather have a smaller phone that fits in my pocket.

  • Can be unwieldy when taking pictures outside. Since it's not in my pocket, I have to take it out of my bag to take a shot, by that time I've already lost my subject (if I'm doing street photography).

In summary, it's really great for general usage. There are just certain times when holding a tablet gets unwieldy. But for everyday stuff, it exactly fits my day-to-day use-cases.