Over the past few years we’ve seen smartphone screen sizes inch upward from 3.5 inches to larger than 6 inches. As the line between phones and tablets continues to blur, you have to wonder — are phones getting too big to hold up to your face to make a call?

It looks like HTC may have anticipated that question with its new HTC Butterfly 5 inch phone. In China it will ship with an HTC Mini remote control which you can use to control media playback and even make phone calls without pulling the Butterfly out of your pocket.

HTC Mini

The HTC Butterfly features a 1.5 GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 quad-core processor, a 1920 x 1080 pixel display, 2GB of RAM, and 16GB of storage. Sold in the US as the Droid DNA, the Butterfly is one of the most powerful Android phones available.

But it’s also one of the bigger phones available. While that high quality screen is great for surfing the web, watching videos, or playing games, it might be overkill for making a quick phone call.

So Chinese users will be able to pair an HTC Mini remote with the phone over a Bluetooth or NFC connection and use it to make calls or send text messages. You can also use the remote to control media playback or even capture photos using the phone’s camera.

If you misplace your phone you can also press a button on the Mini to make your phone ring — but as the smaller, less necessary device, it’s more likely that you’ll misplace the HTC Mini while knowing exactly where your phone is.

via SlashGear and MIC Gadget

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13 replies on “You know a smartphone’s too big when it ships with a remote control”

  1. If I’m gonna get a remote for media playback and phone calls, I’d rather get a bluetooth headset that won’t make me look stupid.

    Heck, wired earbuds with a button for play/pause and answering calls is a better option than this.

  2. The next form-factor battleground: WWII backpack field radio style phone.

  3. Of course this is insane yet required to get around the carriers. In a sane world we would carry a small phone with the radio link and share that out to tablets, etc. But the carriers won’t allow tethering of the data connection. So instead we will tether a ‘cordless phone’ to a voice/text link on what is essentially a tablet. Of course it can’t actually be called a tablet because then the carriers wouldn’t allow any voice service to tether to.

    When do we end this madness and just allow tethering, one of the key purposes envisioned when Bluetooth was first designed.

    1. Because the carriers have turned the whole thing into a cash-grab to get more money from the data you are already paying for anyway.

  4. Yo, dawg! We heard you like phones! So we bundled a phone to your phone!
    But seriously why not a small android and a good Tegra3 tablet then?

  5. This could make sense for a 7″+ tablet but seems wasted on a still sub 6″ phone. A tablet you could store away in your bag and then use this as opposed to digging the tablet out to then text/call. With a 5″ phone though are you really going to bother carrying this thing about to text/make phone calls?

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