What to choose: a smartphone or a tablet?

What to choose: a smartphone or a tablet?

The phablet is actually an overgrown smartphone. Very often, to ensure convenient operation, manufacturers equip it with a stylus. In terms of functionality, however, it is identical to a modern smartphone. Yes, a larger display provides more comfort when playing games, watching movies, surfing the web, and even when writing e-mails. Unfortunately, the larger housing makes the phablet not as handy as a smartphone - it will fit perfectly into a woman's handbag, but it will not always be hidden in a pocket.

Tablets are even bigger, and the display and dimensions are not the only differences. The tablet is not used for telephone calls, so in most models we will not find GSM modules. There are models available on the market equipped with a 3G/LTE module that allows you to use mobile internet. Tablets do not come equipped with the increasingly popular fitness features, nor do all models have built-in GPS, and a larger housing usually accommodates more connectors.

For whom a tablet, for whom a smartphone

These usually small differences, however, determine the use of specific types of devices.

Smartphone - used for communication, in addition to the GSM module for making calls, we have a set of applications here that allow you to stay in touch: e-mail client (Gmail), messenger (Skype, Facetime, Hangout, Viber), social networking client (Tweeter , Facebook). The user thus has many communication channels at his disposal, so that he is always up to date with the events in his personal life. The smartphone also helps you find yourself in reality - maps, navigation, applications that help you choose a restaurant or do shopping. Added to this are entertainment functions - games, video and information services - usually based on websites. This is quite a substantial set of functions, sufficient to manage and plan our lives on the go.

A modern smartphone is a must-have device for every person who uses electronic communication. Depending on the conditions in which it will be used, on our preferences (for example, we take a lot of photos or play games), it will be necessary to choose the appropriate configuration - more on this later in the article.

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Phablet - differs only in size, a large screen allows you to browse websites, watch movies much more comfortably, games also look better on a 6-inch display. The problem, however, is the size. The phablet is difficult to carry in your pocket, even people with small hands may have problems with using the device with one hand - but you can deal with it. Therefore, the phablet seems ideal for women who carry a smartphone in their purse anyway, and for those who prefer the convenience of use over the comfort of storing the device.

Tablet - a tablet is definitely more of a home device. Most models do not have a mobile internet module, so in order to fully use their potential, we must be within the range of a Wi-Fi network. We can buy a tablet for PLN 200, but there are also models on sale that cost over PLN 4,000. Such a large price range also defines the applications. In general, however, it can be said that the tablet manages to replace the computer much better than the smartphone. On a 10-inch screen, we will run a spreadsheet, display a full version of a website, and comfortably watch a movie. Who should buy a tablet? After proper configuration, it will be a good device for children, it will also be useful for people who like to browse the Internet while sitting comfortably in an armchair. It's the best equipment for viewing digital photos, it's also good for meetings - you can take notes and conduct presentations on it.

If we already know which device will be the most suitable for us, it is worth pointing it out and taking part in the competition - more about it at the end of this article.

» Choose the best tablet of the year and win attractive prizes

Smartphone: which model to choose?

Not every smartphone will meet our expectations. Manufacturers pamper buyers by giving them a huge selection. Just take a look at the Smartphones category at Ceneo.pl to see that there are over 1,600 different models available! So how do you find yourself in the maze of configurations, companies and types? Just use the filters that will narrow down the number of models that meet our requirements to a dozen or so. So we can determine the manufacturer, screen diagonal, memory, LTE support, and even the color of the housing. Filtering options also allow you to check the most popular models. There is one more, very important advantage of using the Ceneo.pl website - in the search results, next to tailor-made devices, we also get the offer of the cheapest store offering the device. So we can not only choose the right model, but also buy it at the cheapest price. It is also worth following the ratings and comments left on Ceneo.pl by users, you will find them right under the name of the model in the search results. It is worth remembering that the prices indicated by Ceneo.pl are usually lower than in the case of auction websites. However, in order to know what to look for, we must first find out what parameters are important and which must be paid attention to.

Operating system

The first criterion when choosing a smartphone is the operating system - it largely directs us to the appropriate group of devices. Devices operating under the control of the following systems are currently on sale: Android, iOS and Windows Phone. iOS can only be found on iPhones (latest iPhone models: 6, 6 Plus and 6s). It is an easy-to-use, refined, effective-looking system, and when buying a new iPhone, we are guaranteed to upgrade to newer versions. Unfortunately, we have to spend PLN 2,600 on the new iPhone. In terms of operation, however, Windows is the simplest, but also the least popular, so the database of programs created for mobile Windows is the poorest. When deciding on a Windows phone, we can only choose Lumia devices (the brand is owned by Microsoft). The latest devices run Windows 10 Mobile, while the older ones - Windows Phone. Who should choose Windows? People looking for an easy-to-use phone who are attached to the services offered by Microsoft (OneDrive, Office, etc.).

Photo: Computer WorldPhoto: Computer WorldPhoto: Computer World

Mobile operating systems look very similar: Windows Phone, Android 5.0, iOS 9

What should you choose: smartphone or tablet?

The most popular and universal system is Android. Because it is an open operating system, manufacturers can make modifications, so the service is not always the same. Most often, however, it does not cause problems, and the huge number of available applications (as in the case of iOS) is one of the advantages of Android. This system also allows you to best adjust the appearance, operation and capabilities to your own preferences. It will work for both the advanced user and the layman.

There are still devices on the market equipped with Firefox, BlackBerry OS - but it's not worth being interested in them. When choosing a specific Android smartphone model, we will pay attention to its version. It's important to keep it up-to-date. Currently, the latest phones operate under the control of Android 6.0, but you can safely choose models with version 5.

Screen size

Another very important element is the size and type of screen. Smartphones available for sale are equipped with displays from 3 to 6 inches. So the difference in size is huge. Here we should be guided by usability considerations. It's good to have a large screen, but it must not make it difficult for us to carry or use the smartphone with one hand. Therefore, the ideal solution is a 5-5.5-inch smartphone, and for people with small hands 4.3 - 5 inches. Resolution is also very important, it determines the sharpness of the image displayed on the screen. Currently, the acceptable minimum display is 1280 x 720 dots. The new smartphone should rather have a screen with a resolution of 1920 x 1080 pixels. The latest flagship models have much higher resolutions - Samsung S6 - 2560 x 1440 pixels. Its display looks better, but it uses more energy and requires more efficient components.

In the case of the screen, the manufacturing technology is also important. It determines the quality of color reproduction, the readability of the image outdoors and the viewing angles. Samsung successfully promotes Super AMOLED technology and it must be admitted that it has many advantages. It provides a very high contrast (black color is perfectly black and does not shine), attractive colors and large viewing angles. AMOLED displays are very easy to read on a sunny day. Most manufacturers, however, use the IPS technology known from TV screens/monitors. It has less intense, but more natural than AMOLED colors, very good, but not like AMOLED viewing angles (the screen is backlit at the edges). We should avoid phones with TN matrices. Even a slight change in the angle of viewing the screen causes color distortions, and in extreme cases we see the image in the negative. A TN display is also not able to display colors as well.

The screen coating is also very important. In cheap phones, it is ordinary plexiglass, which breaks and is easily scratched. Reputable manufacturers (except Sony) usually install special Corning Gorilla Glass. The latest version of the glass coating is marked as 4, but any Corning protective glass will make our phone more durable.

The latest Samsung smartphones feature curved displays. This solution not only looks attractive, but also gives new functions to the user. On the rounded part of the screen, for example, we can display notifications

Processor and graphics chip, i.e. SoC

The heart of a modern smartphone is the SoC integrated circuit, which in its design integrates the main processor, graphics, sometimes even LTE, GPS, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth module. The SoC is therefore a chip responsible for the configuration of our smartphone and that's good, because such a solution greatly facilitates the selection of the appropriate specification.

If we want to buy a fast, top-shelf phone, offering performance that is more than enough for games, everyday operation of the device and programs, we should choose the Qualcomm chipset from the Snapdragon 800 series - currently 805, 808, 810. Equally efficient systems will be Exynos chipsets manufactured by Samsung. Exynos 7 Octa models will be the most efficient. Only flagships costing over PLN 1,500 have this type of chipset.

It doesn't always make sense to pay more for something you won't use anyway. This truth from PCs also applies to smartphones. Instead of flagships, you can choose mid-range devices that work equally well and look prestigious and modern. This type of smartphones should have Qualcomm Snapdragon 600 series systems, they can also be cheaper Snapdragon 400. From the Samsung processor offer, you can choose devices with Exynos 5 systems. In the middle segment, MediaTek also comes into play. In this case, it is worth paying attention to the systems with the designation starting with MT67xx - these are the latest 4-, 6-, 8- or 12-core systems. Some (mostly older) MediaTek processors are experiencing issues with GPS performance. We will buy a mid-range smartphone at a price of PLN 800 to PLN 1,500.


A very important parameter of every smartphone and tablet is memory. It affects the smooth operation of the device and the number of applications or games that we can install in it. In the case of RAM, budget devices should have at least 1 GB - this is the absolute minimum. In mid-range devices we should have 2 GB, while in flagships we should have 3 or 4 GB of RAM.

In the case of data memory, a lot depends on whether the smartphone has a memory card slot. Remember, however, that not all data can be transferred to it and, despite an empty card, the system may refuse to install further programs or games. Currently, a cheap smartphone should be equipped with a minimum of 8 GB of internal memory, mid-range devices should have 16 or 32 GB, while flagships should have 32, 64 or 128 GB of memory.

Additional functions

Depending on our needs, we can choose smartphones equipped with quite unusual or less common functions. A good example are two slots for SIM cards - thanks to them we can use two numbers at the same time (business and private or with cheap internet and cheap calls). Some of the new models also have an LTE modem, which is basically only useful when we want to make a router out of the phone. Internet access speed over 100 Mb / s is not necessary for anyone on a smartphone. Attention! Here, however, many manufacturers use traps. Since the LTE modem is built into the chipset, adding this function involves changing this system. Therefore, models with LTE usually have better parameters (also more RAM or a better display).

Two memory slots in Lumia 630 Dual Sim


Samsung Galaxy S6 camera module

A modern smartphone should theoretically easily replace a compact digital camera . In practice, the excellent quality of photos is certainly ensured by flagships - i.e. phones costing over PLN 1,500. In cheaper models it can be different and unfortunately it does not depend only on the resolution of the matrix or the brightness of the lens. The quality is influenced by both the software and the manufacturer of the photosensitive matrix, and even the chipset used in the smartphone. Fortunately, most cameras built into mid-range phones can take good photos, and they also record videos in 1080p resolution. What matrix resolution to choose? The rear camera should have at least 8 Mpix, while in flagships at least 16 Mpix.

When looking for a good quality camera, it is worth looking at the Samsung, especially the Galaxy S6, Note Edge or Note 4 models. The cameras in the LG G3, G4 and Sony Xperia Z series smartphones also work quite well. a megapixel matrix that takes very good photo quality during the day is, for example, the latest Motorola Play X, which costs much less than flagships. We are also accustomed to good quality photos by Apple and Microsoft products - in the mobile Windows the camera operation is extremely well refined.


Which manufacturer to choose? In this case, several elements will help us in the choice. In the first place, of course, we put the appearance and quality of workmanship. The phone should be flat, with slim, minimal bezels and physical buttons to operate the system (some models have them displayed at the bottom of the screen, which reduces the number of pixels available to the operating system). The phone should have Gorilla Glass and made of good quality materials, well-fitted housing parts. In addition to visual elements, it is worth paying attention to the process of updating systems in relation to older models. We will know how long the manufacturer supports the device. The model here is Apple, which releases an update for older devices. Also, users of Samsung's flagship devices can have a reason to be happy - because they can count on updating 3-4 versions of the system. Lesser-known Chinese manufacturers generally do not update their phones, which makes them obsolete quickly.

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On the next page you will find out which tablet is worth choosing.

»Smartphones 2016: what will the upcoming flagships be?

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Which tablet to choose

In the case of tablets, the popularity of Windows is definitely higher than in the case of smartphones. A tablet running under Windows 10 is able to practically replace a computer for us, and after the introduction of the tablet mode with the latest version of Windows, operating windows has become simple and pleasant. Convertible notebooks, i.e. with detachable keyboards, use Windows, and in this solution Windows makes sense.

The leader, however, is still Android, mainly due to cheap, mass-sold tablets. Android, however, works perfectly on a tablet, so using it is absolutely justified. The last group of tablets are iPads with iOS. As in the case of iPhones, they are elegant and convenient to use devices with a large repository of programs.

Processor and memory

Despite many design similarities, the tablet market differs slightly from the smartphone in terms of parameters. Recently, tablets with Intel processors have become the most popular, which can be found both in devices costing PLN 400 and PLN 1,500. Intel processors, unlike Qualcomm, Exynos and MediaTek chips, use the x86-64 architecture, under which Android can also run. The latest and most powerful chips are marked as Atom x7 Z8700 and x5 Z8500 and Z8300. In tablets, however, it is more common to find previous generation systems with model numbers starting with Z3xxx. These are mostly fast quad-core units.

Despite this, Qualcomm processors are still installed in flagship products, and Samsung continues to use its Exynos chips. As in the case of smartphones, cheaper devices with MediaTek processors are also available here. The key to selecting these elements is exactly the same as in the case of smartphones. In budget, cheap tablets, we can also find Rockchip and Allwinner processors, but they are not fast units and it is better to buy a tablet with an Intel processor, even from the older generation.

When choosing a tablet, avoid models with 512 MB of RAM and choose devices with at least 2 GB of RAM. This will guarantee the smooth operation of the system and applications. In the case of the Android model, 16 GB of disk space (for data) should be enough, provided that we have a microSD card connector. In Windows tablets we should have twice as much.


Commonly available tablets are equipped with screens from 7 to 10 inches. The size of the screen determines the application, but it is not the only thing that is important. When choosing, we must pay attention to the screen resolution. We should look for devices that have a resolution of 1280 x 800 pixels or higher. A good choice in this case are displays composed of 1920 x 1080 dots. Of course, there are also more expensive models (Samsung Galaxy Tab S2, iPad Air 2 or iPad Mini Retina), for which we have to prepare a minimum of PLN 1,500. The cheapest devices (from PLN 200) equipped with a screen with a resolution of 1024 x 600 or 1024 x 768 pixels will work well as a tablet for a child - you can easily run games or watch a movie on them. In the case of cheap tablets, it is better to choose devices from well-known manufacturers - Lenovo IdeaTab 2 A7, Samsung Galaxy Tab 3 7").

Extras (projector, stylus, LTE/3G)

Some tablets are equipped with quite unusual, but interesting and sometimes useful functions. A good example here is a built-in projector. For example, it is mounted on the base of the 13.3-inch Lenovo Yoga Tablet 2 Pro 1380F and allows the image from the device to be projected onto the wall. It's a good idea for a mobile cinema or business presentation.

Many people will also appreciate the stylus, a tool that allows you to operate the tablet more precisely than with your finger. And because the tablet also detects the pressure level of the stylus, this device is also suitable for graphic designers.

If you want to use the tablet not only at home, it is worth buying a model equipped with a 3G/LTE model. After placing the SIM card in the slot, we will be able to use the mobile Internet, and thus make the tablet independent of the need to connect to a Wi-Fi network. This solution makes it possible to use the tablet everywhere. Twin models with and without a built-in model are often available for sale - the price difference is from PLN 100 to PLN 300.

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Choose what you like the most

Choosing the right device for us can also become a game in which we can win attractive prizes. How? Just click on the link, select your favorite items in three categories and answer the question. In the Ceneo.pl elections, you can win a scooter, Samsung phones and tablets, as well as a Sony PlayStation4 console.

» 10 amazing "prophecies" by Bill Gates - he predicted Facebook, smartphones and online payments

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