How’s this for an interesting take on smartphone form factor? Russia’s Yota Device has let slip a few detail about an upcoming Android-based smartphone featuring both LCD and E Ink displays. The handset, which is naturally dubbed the YotaPhone, pairs the two screen technologies by replacing what would traditionally be the back of the phone with the secondary screen, a logical solution to a problem others have attempted to solve with convertible clamshell devices.
As far as specs, the LCD portion of the device is rated at 720p resolution and measures in at 4.3 inches. The E Ink screen matches the size of the “front” display and is rated at 200dpi. Both are constructed with Gorilla Glass for extra toughness. Internally, the phone will rock a 1.5GHz dual-core Snapdragon S4, 2GB RAM, and 32GB of storage. The LTE-enabled YotaPhone also sports a 12MP camera with complimentary HD front-facing camera.
But haven’t we learned our lesson about dual-screen devices? They have done little to capture the hearts of users in the past. Sure, what we have seen so far have been mostly shoddy implementations from manufacturers like Kyocera, but who is to say the YotaPhone will do any better? And is there really a point in having a secondary E Ink screen if it only measures in at 4.3 inches? I guess if you are doing a lot of reading it makes sense, but if having the option is that important, you likely own an E Ink-based e-reader already.
Right now the YotaPhone is pegged for a tentative Q3 2013 release in Russia, with a potential for European and US release as well. By the time Q3 rolls around, however, we doubt two screens will be enough to keep the handset afloat given its decidedly mid-range spec sheet.