Half Of User Activity On Phablets Is Tied To Social Networks

Phablets, or smartphones with screens between 5 and 7 inches, are taking over. In the first quarter of 2014, they accounted for one-third of global smartphone shipments, buoyed by 369% year-over-year growth.

So what are people doing on their phablets? Are they taking over duties once held by tablets? Are they expanding smartphone usage?

Phablet users use social networking apps and sites more often than smartphone and tablet users, according to Opera Mediaworks, an ad network. More than half of the ad network’s ad impressions served to phablets were from social apps and sites. Smartphones and tablets saw a much smaller share of their impressions come from social media.

The rise of the phablet has coincided with the explosion of the “visual web.”

That is, over the last year and a half, there has been immense growth in social networks that are focused primarily on sharing self-curated, rich media content, including images and videos.

One example of how phablets can help users get the most out of visual sharing apps is Snapchat — the Samsung Galaxy Note 3 phablet device, with its large screen and stylus, allows users to easily draw and write on their Snapchat photos.

In a new report from BI Intelligence, we look at growth trajectory of the phablet market and survey the behaviour patterns of phablet users compared to those of tablet, smartphone, and desktop PC users. In turn, we look at how phablets have altered the smartphone market and cannibalised demand for tablets.

Here are of the key points about the phablet market:

In full, the report:

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