Sharp launches a clamshell smartphone in Japan, nabs a feature from BlackBerry

Sharp launches a clamshell smartphone in Japan, nabs a feature from BlackBerry
Yesterday, we talked about how the newest craze among the population in Japan is not some overly-complicated smartphone, but – on the contrary – the good old-fashioned flip phones. It seems that Sharp has been keeping a good eye on the tendencies in the country, as the company has now responded in kind – by releasing the Aquos K SHF31 – a flip smartphone mix.

Powered by a Snapdragon 400, 1 GB of RAM, has 8 GB of expandable (to 32 GB) storage, and a 1,410 mAh battery, the Aquos K SHF31 glows with a 3.4” display with 540 x 960 pixels stretched across it. It runs on Android 4.4 KitKat, which, naturally, has a skin deployed over it, in order to accommodate the physical form, and controls, of the phone.

Speaking of the controls, the Aquos K SHF31 sports a feature, still unique for handsets – while its buttons are physical, they do allow touch control, meaning the user can swipe over the keyboard in order to control the display, instead of having to reach for (and smudge up) the display all the time. This is a feature, which the BlackBerry Passport has been so far unique for, but may pick up and become a trend with some niche devices.

The handset obviously tries to do just enough to cover the needs of flip phone users – basic telephony and text / email services – while keeping a slight edge, by bleeding into smartphone category. This is not the first clamshell smartphone we've seen – Samsung likes to cater to the classics, too, however – it does so by providing flagship-class hardware in the flip casing. Its latest Galaxy Golden 2 is packed with a 2.5 GHz Snapdragon 801, 2 GB of RAM, 16 / 3.7 MP main and front cameras, and an external / internal display combo – both 3.9" big, sporting a 720p resolution.

Do you think the flip-mania may bleed over from the Asian markets? Would you rock a clamshell if they do?

source: IT Media (translated) via GSMDome

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