Startup co-founded by ex-Apple CEO intros two affordable Android handsets - meet Obi Worldphone


From 1983 to 1993, the CEO of Apple was John Sculley, and although he did not remain at the top of the then-struggling company to witness its rise on all fronts and especially the one on the smartphone market, it seems that the former CEO is looking forward to taking a chunk of that niche. 

It seems that Sculley is one of the co-founders of a new startup aiming to rattle the cages on the smartphone scene. Meet Obi Worldphone, a Silicon Valley company that just unveiled its first two handsets, and boy, what handsets these are!

The first one is the Obi Worldphone SF1, a phone that packs some potent kick for the price tag it flaunts. Let's start by mentioning it first - the Obi Worldphone SF1 will cost you $199. For that price Obi offers a unibody with metal accents and curved side frames, a fully-laminated "floating" Gorilla Glass 4.0 display, and a fingerprint-free coating. 

On the specs side, the SF1 amazes with a 5-inch IPS 1080p display that boasts a pixel density of 443ppi; the chipset on board is an octa-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 615, either 2GB of RAM and 16GB of storage or 3GB of RAM and 32GB of storage (we are dealing with LP-DDR3 RAM and eMMC 4.5 memory), and a microSD card slot. There's also Dolby Surround 7.1 on board. 

At the rear, there's a 13MP main camera (comprising an F2.0 Sony Exmor IMX214 sensor), a 5MP front-facing one, two SIM card slots, and a 3,000mAh battery under the hood, as well as Quick Charge 1.0. There's also LTE support and Android 5.0.2 to run the show. The whole shebang is fitted in a body with a dimensions of 146 x 74 x 8mm and weighs 147gr. 
The other smartphone that Obi unveiled is the SJ1.5, a more affordable, but also well-spec'd device. Its design is also pretty good-looking, even more when you consider that Obi asks $119 for it. It also comes with a unibody that boasts an unorthodox shape (flatter at the top, slightly curved at the bottom). Unlike the SF1, the SJ1.5 doesn't come with a floating display; instead, it relies on a regular Gorilla Glass 3.0 720p display. 

As it's more affordable, the SJ1.5 comes with humbler specs - a 1.3GHz quad-core MediaTek MT6580 chip, 1GB of RAM, 16GB of storage expandable with a microSD card, two SIM cards, and a sizeable 3,000mAh battery at the back. There's an 8MP camera at the back, which makes use of an F2.2 OmniVision OV8865 sensor; the front-facing sensor is a 5MP one. 

All sounds great, right? Well, it will be even better if Obi launches its two new entrants in the USA, but this is a bit unlikely. The SF1 and the SJ1.5 are intended for the emerging markets (Vietnam, Indonesia, Thailand, the UAE, Saudi Arabia, Kenya, Nigeria, Tanzania, South Africa, Pakistan, Turkey, and India are among the currently listed countries that Obi will have a presence). 

Would you get one if it were available in the US?


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47 Comments

1. Diego!

Posts: 876; Member since: Jun 15, 2009

Nokia Lumia 900 and iPhone 4s had a baby

16. Pattyface

Posts: 1658; Member since: Aug 20, 2014

That's what I thought too

17. mafiaprinc3

Posts: 585; Member since: May 07, 2012

this literally screams iphone on a flat plastic box

34. Scott93274

Posts: 6040; Member since: Aug 06, 2013

Oh! I see it now! lol. Yes, it does.

40. o0Exia0o

Posts: 903; Member since: Feb 01, 2013

Looks like the Lumia 735...

45. fatexo

Posts: 221; Member since: May 21, 2010

And the baby decided to go Android

2. sorcio46

Posts: 435; Member since: Jul 27, 2011

MediaTek MT6580 chip... then NOPE!

36. TezzaBP

Posts: 274; Member since: May 18, 2015

That's for the lower specced one though

41. sorcio46

Posts: 435; Member since: Jul 27, 2011

Then they should increase the price to 129 and add a Snapdragon 410 in it.

3. xdza1979

Posts: 296; Member since: Aug 08, 2015

Ok unbox it !

4. waelnd

Posts: 11; Member since: May 03, 2013

For its price, the SF1 packs both the looks and the specs. This seems like a real mid range leader. Of course what remains is the software experience and support, which only time will tell!

5. wando77

Posts: 1168; Member since: Aug 23, 2012

Looks like an iPhone in a crap case

35. neela_akaash

Posts: 1239; Member since: Aug 05, 2014

To some people everything looks like iPhone these days.

6. donrox

Posts: 203; Member since: Jul 18, 2014

SF1 looks like an iPhone glued to the front of a Nokia!

10. pifon

Posts: 76; Member since: Jun 15, 2013

I tought at first its SF1 laying on Lumia for size comparison, lol

8. superkuiken

Posts: 168; Member since: Mar 24, 2013

It kinda looks like a mix between an iPhone, an Xperia Z series, Jolla's Sailphone and Nokia's N1 UI. The pricing is amazing though.

11. alumoyo

Posts: 392; Member since: Aug 26, 2013

So this is what it looks like when designers are TRYING TOO HARD. These area ugly phones!

22. dimas

Posts: 3382; Member since: Jul 22, 2014

Well with gorilla glass 4, and the rest of high end specs with 3000mah battery, I won't mind the design since my focus will just be on the screen. The design looks good and elegant for me, better than iphone's unibody toy design. This is the type of phone that I won't buy a case to cover it's build.

12. Zylam

Posts: 1817; Member since: Oct 20, 2010

Horrible name and yea it's an iPhone glued to a case with a Nokia N9 vibe.

13. elitewolverine

Posts: 5192; Member since: Oct 28, 2013

Looks very good like the round bottom and sharp top

14. nebula

Posts: 1009; Member since: Feb 20, 2015

Iphone in cased in Nokia body . looks nice though

15. Mfa901

Posts: 291; Member since: Jul 14, 2012

iphone with a case?

18. Cyberchum

Posts: 1095; Member since: Oct 24, 2012

Obi? Hmm, the name creams Nigeria. Back to the device, pretty good specs for that price enclosed in a body casing that will surely stand out.

20. dimas

Posts: 3382; Member since: Jul 22, 2014

SF1 sure is bang for the buck. Same price but higher specs than huawei p8 lite. The front is also intriguing as I used to own a lumia 1020.

23. Cyberchum

Posts: 1095; Member since: Oct 24, 2012

Will be offered in Nigeria, time to take a look at the names of the founders.

24. jauling

Posts: 82; Member since: Feb 13, 2015

why wait until its in the US? I'd consider buying this as long as the LTE bands words in NL/Europe/US! Sure, its no Z5 compact, but its price definitely isnt either!

25. grbrao

Posts: 294; Member since: Nov 23, 2012

SFI looks stunningly beautiful and well crafted. hope software wise wont have any bolt ware and they keep it as much close to stock android as possible. no matter what, haters going to hate for sure. i can use this phone without any cover... Good Work Ex-CEO.. hope to see higher end in same design.

26. PorkyBurger

Posts: 585; Member since: May 18, 2013

I love the looks of the SF1, though. It looks SO DAMN ON FLEEEEEEK. And for that price it sounds like a really great device on-paper. Definitely will give others a run for their money. But, SJ1.5 not so much, and has quite dissapointing specs, BUT actually, what else could you ask for that kind of price. At least the battery is enormous for what it costs, and with these specs, battery life will be quite good. I would definitely give SF1 a try if it ever comes to Europe. It's a YES from me.

27. Kruze

Posts: 1285; Member since: Dec 30, 2014

Nokia Lumia 900 + iPhone + Jolla Phone + Xiaomi Mi 3 = Obi Worldphone Extra: iPhone in a case

29. PorkyBurger

Posts: 585; Member since: May 18, 2013

Dude, like, that is so original. Get a f**king cookie. *throws an imaginary cookie*

* Some comments have been hidden, because they don't meet the discussions rules.

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