On September 9, Apple is expected to release it's first large screen smartphone, and it's about time. According to data published by market research firm IDC last week, much of the future growth in the smartphone market will occur in the phablet segment.
IDC predicts overall shipments to reach 1,252m units this year, of which 175m will fit the phablet category (screen sizes 5.5" and higher). By 2018, the smartphone market is tipped to grow to 1,839m units per year, of which 593m are expected to be phablets. In other words: while the phablet segment is expected to grow at an average rate of 36% until 2018, the rest of the smartphone market will grow at a meager 4% per year.