Let me give credit where credit is due. Apple is an innovating, disrupting technology giant with a long string of upended markets– PCs, media players, retail stores, smartphones, tablets, and now watches.
With such a glorified history of bringing to market the coolest of cool new gadgets, how could Apple have missed this one? I’m thinking of the mashup of Kindle e-reader and smartphone; high resolution color screen meets black and white which can be read anywhere, anytime.
Idea Whose Time Has Come
For those of us who read more than we post to Facebook or tweet or text, Amazon’s Kindle e-readers are a delight because they do one thing an iPad cannot. Be visible in bright light.
Yes, I have iBooks books, and the Kindle app on my iPhone and iPad, but the Kindle e-reader does what Apple’s famed and popular devices do not. So does YotaPhone.
This is one of those crazy devices which makes sense instantly. On one side its your typical Android-based smartphone with a big, vibrant, color screen. On the back side it’s an e-reader screen; a glass display made of E-Ink. Think of it as digital paper; a black and white screen which– unlike smartphones and tablets with their high resolution, battery sucking screens– can be read under almost any conditions.
I want this.
On the front screen it’s just another Android-based smartphone, but on the backside it’s– another screen; the E-Ink variety; black and white, high resolution, highly visible in sunlight, and very energy efficient battery usage. This isn’t the first smartphone with an E-Ink screen, but it’s the one you’d like to own.
This latest incarnation of YotaPhone has a built-in mirror mode which lets Android and apps run on the E-Ink screen. Talk about good battery life. The E-Ink screen is 4.7-inches, the same size as the iPhone 6. The front screen is a 5-inch, 1080p, high resolution AMOLED screen; slightly smaller than iPhone 6 Plus.
Even better, the E-Ink display on the back can be customized, personalized– it’s a digital canvas, a backside cover-like device that can change with your whims because the display can be always on. As far as typical smartphone features, YotaPhone doesn’t exactly blaze new ground– it’s mostly a stock Android setup, but using the latest– Lollipop, mostly mediocre, with 8-megapixel camera, and all-day battery life– except with the E-Ink, which can extend the usage by a day or two. If you’re an inveterate reader and find iPhones and iPads not worthy of your effort over long periods of time (thanks to the screen and battery drainage), and you love using a Kindle, you’re likely to like YotaPhone.
Why didn’t Apple do this?