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Last month’s MWC was sort of a letdown, so we didn’t really have much to talk about in the wake of what was once upon a time the biggest event in mobile. And yet there were a couple of showstoppers in Barcelona, as well as a few surprises that we didn’t and still don’t know if to call pleasant or on the contrary.

The 7-inch Asus Fonepad definitely falls in the surprises category, being one of the most intriguing and bizarre devices introduced in 2013 so far. The thing is marketed basically as an (uncomfortable) supersized phone and on top of it all has an Intel processor “inside”.

But if you thought Intel was going to be focusing more on tabs starting now, you thought wrong. Instead, the Fonepad will probably be filed under experiments, while a new more comfortably sized phone made by Asus is headed our way come next summer.

That’s according to Digitimes, who quotes sources “from the upstream supply chain”. Said sources told the online publication the new Asus-Intel device will adopt a 5 to 5.5-inch display and pack an Atom Z2580 (aka Clover Trail+) processor.

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Original Asus FonePad

If it all proves legit, the phone will follow on the footsteps of the Lenovo K900, expected out in China in April and soon after in the rest of the world. Of course, we have no words on pricing yet for the Asus device, but one thing is clear – Intel has big plans for 2013’s smartphone market and is no longer content with sitting on the sidelines and expecting the right moment to get in the game.

At the same time, Digitimes has added to the second-gen Nexus 7 rumors, saying that such a device is in fact in the works and could land in May. Asus and Google will work together once again and the 7-incher is most likely to be introduced at the I/O conference, along with Android 5.0, Motorola’s X Phone and maybe even LG’s Nexus 5.

Nexus 7’s follow-up is to cost $249 and up and should come with “enhanced specifications” compared with the original (duh!).

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