Introducing the Yolo phone by Intel

The folks at Intel have introduced a new smartphone for the African market. The name is sure to capture anyone who follows hip-hop almost immediately — it’s the Yolo! No, they didn’t name the smartphone after the acronym which stands for “you only live once,” one which should be abolished as quickly as bell bottoms were.

Instead, Yolo is a slight deviation from “Xolo,” the name of Intel’s first smartphone released in 2012, and it seems to be a very decent option for those living in an area that is quite receptive to what we’d call cheap smartphones. The Intel Yolo features a 3.5 inch 320×420 display and a 1.2Ghz processor. We wouldn’t exactly call it smashing, but hey — YOLO.

Kenya is the primary market for the device, and residents of the area will be asked to shell out 10,999 shillings — or $125 — for the privilege of walking away from Safaricom with one. The phone doesn’t look terribly bad in design, but you might have guessed that it doesn’t feature the world’s most riveting profile.

On the plus side, there does seem to be a modern version of Android running without any customization mucking things up, though expect a few pre-installed apps which should actually do quite well to enhance the experience. Intel’s not touting this thing as its crown jewel or treating this as a shining moment in the history of mobile tech, of course, but its efforts to spread the love to developing nations are highly appreciated. Read on for full press details.

Nairobi, Kenya, 24th January 2013 — Leading integrated communications provider Safaricom Limited today announced the Yolo™ smartphone, the first smartphone for Africa with Intel Inside®.

The device is aimed at the growing number of cost-conscious and first-time buyers in Kenya who do not want to sacrifice device performance or user experience for cost. The Yolo smartphone will be sold in Safaricom shops countrywide at the entry price of Kshs. 10,999 and comes bundled with free 500 MB data.

The phone is based on Intel’s latest smartphone platform for emerging markets, launched earlier this month at the International Consumer Electronics Show (CES). With Intel Inside, users of the Yolo smartphone are assured of fast Web browsing, impressive multimedia capabilities and a great Android* applications experience.

“We’re redefining what cost-conscious Kenyans can expect from a smartphone,” said Peter Arina, general manager, Safaricom’ s Consumer Business Unit. “The Intel-based Yolo smartphone strikes a unique balance between price and performance – we consider it to be a real breakthrough. It’s great news that Kenya will be the launch country in Africa for smartphones with Intel Inside and we expect a great reception from our customers.”

“We are delighted to partner with Safaricom in bringing the first smartphone with Intel Inside to Kenyan consumers” said Aysegul Ildeniz, Regional Director for the Middle East, Turkey and Africa Region. “The new handset extends the benefits of Intel technology to more smartphone users around the world and we believe that Kenyan consumers will welcome the increased functionality and overall value of the device. We look forward to our continued cooperation with Safaricom.”

The Yolo™ smartphone is based on the Intel Smartphone Reference Design for the value segment of the smartphone market. The device is powered by the Intel® Atom™ processor Z2420 with Intel Hyper-Threading Technology that can achieve speeds of up to 1.2 GHz. The efficiency of this technology package helps to enable a smooth and responsive user experience, which includes support for 1080p HD video capture, and a camera with advanced imaging capabilities, including burst mode that allows people to capture seven pictures in a second in 5-megapixel quality.

The device is housed in a compact design and features a 3.5-inch touchscreen display for crisp text and images, support for FM radio and an expandable memory slot for greater flexibility, and HSPA+ modem support with Intel’s XMM 6265 modem for global roaming. The handset can also be enabled with McAfee mobile security software, providing consumers with added protection as well as data backup and restore capabilities when needed1.

About Intel
Intel (NASDAQ: INTC) is a world leader in computing innovation. The company designs and builds the essential technologies that serve as the foundation for the world’s computing devices. Additional information about Intel is available at newsroom.intel.com and blogs.intel.com.

Intel, the Intel logo, Intel Atom, Intel Inside, the Intel Inside logo and Yolo are trademarks or registered trademarks of Intel Corporation in the U.S. and/or other countries.

* Other names and brands may be claimed as the property of others.

About Safaricom

Safaricom provides a comprehensive range of services under one roof. This includes mobile and fixed voice and data services on a variety of platforms. It is Kenya’s widest 3G network with a growing fibre optic cable footprint and its most expansive WIMAX presence.
Safaricom pioneered commercial mobile money transfer globally through M-PESA, the most successful such service anywhere in the world.  Launched in March 2007 as a money transfer service, it now has over 15.2 million customers and over 45,000 Agent outlets countrywide.

1 *Device package includes information on how the end user can enable the free, limited 1- or 2-year License period.

[image via Techweez]

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  • NIGHTSCOUT

    YOLO!

    • niuguy

      Guys, whether or not you like it (ok nobody does) somebody HAD to do it.

      • NIGHTSCOUT

        I know right? Besides, just as stupid a name as the paperwhite (paperweight)

  • Lennatron

    At least its running Android 4.0 or higher!

  • Anthony Ngo

    Wow vanilla Android? Other OEM’s take note!

    • http://www.facebook.com/eric.williams.1213 Eric Williams

      That’s actually common with these low end phones. I’ve had two cheapies so far, both running essentially un-molested versions of android.

      • a) youth.in.asia

        My phone was touched by my uncle, it has been living with the pain ever since

  • paxmos

    It looks much better than my Xperia T…

  • camelsnot

    damn Africans and their yolo.

  • ari_free

    YOLO versus Ouya!

  • Steven Skwarkowski

    Ooooh….Look at those subpar specs! Yay…=0)

  • toomuchgame441

    I still prefer my HTC Hero, better device all around

  • socalrailroader

    It’s also a county here in NorCal-

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Yolo_County,_California

  • GOODASGREEN

    YOLO UGLY

  • chuckles87

    using yolo on a product name intel you have made my boycott list not that i have any of your products my pc is amd powered

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Jamille-Browne/1184321457 Jamille Browne

    Yolo? Because it only has one life drop it in anyway and cracked

  • Michael Lee

    320×420? I’m too spoiled with my 1280×720 screen…

  • fahim5130

    Is this what WILL.I.AM came up with. apparently he is in charge of phones and tablets at intel

  • http://www.facebook.com/skyrokerz Soumyadev Roy

    You Live Only Once!