Sharp ISO1 Android Smartbook Headed To Japan


Aside from the beautiful Japanese women in the picture below, something immediately jumps out at me – the form factor of the device shown on the left.


It’s an Android device produced by Sharp, tentatively called the ISO1, that will launch on Japan’s second largest carrier – AU by KDDI. I can’t help but be terribly jealous of the form-factor, not necessarily because of the size, but more because the clamshell reminds me of the LG Voyager that once upon a time had my heart.


If you’re a regular Phandroid reader, you may recall some of my pleas to produce a Voyageresque Android. But let me put my emotions aside – the Sharp ISO1 has some features itself that make it a very attractive Android in its own right:

  • 5-inch touchscreen
  • 960×480 resolution
  • 5.27 megapixel camera
  • front facing 0.43megapixel camera
  • TV tuner
  • FM Transmitter
  • Wi-Fi b / g
  • IRDA support for Blu-Ray
  • Bluetooth
  • 4GB of internal memory
  • Snapdragon processor (1GHz)
  • Android 1.6
  • 227 grams
  • 83 x 149 x 17.9 mm

Cool lineup of specs, and despite the device’s “homely” looks when opened, I find myself oddly infatuated with the keyboard. Especially after seeing the relative size to the hand in the photo – although who knows how big that particular person’s hands are:


With all the mobile convergence going on, its hard to pinpoint what exactly you call a device. Is it a phone? A MID? A smartbook? A tablet? Maybe a netbook? I’m not exactly sure whta the ISO1 is, but without a screen on the outside of the clamshell, its definitely a MID/Smartbook, and I guess we’ll have to wait and see how AU positions it.


It’s hard to get a grasp for what the Sharp ISO1 is all about unless you position it against other devices to take a look at its advantages/disadvantages on a typical use scenario. Here it is next to the HTC Magic and iPhone 3GS:


Yeah. It’s a monster. Definitely not something you’ll be carrying around in your pocket unless you’re Shaq, but definitely something that could come in handy and is – outside of your pocket – still pretty darn portable. It’s hurt by the lack of multi-touch support but overall we really like the idea.


The developer version of the device, called the JN-DK01, will allow for alterations of the OS and deeper access to the system itself. Both versions should be made available in June and I’m wondering how the Japanese market feels about this. So far, the HTC Magic is the only Android phone available in the country, unless I’m mistaken. And if I am please correct me in the comments!

[Via itmedia, akihabaranews, sharp, crunchgear]

Rob Jackson
I'm an Android and Tech lover, but first and foremost I consider myself a creative thinker and entrepreneurial spirit with a passion for ideas of all sizes. I'm a sports lover who cheers for the Orange (College), Ravens (NFL), (Orioles), and Yankees (long story). I live in Baltimore and wear it on my sleeve, with an Under Armour logo. I also love traveling... where do you want to go?

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  1. If only it was a bit smaller and had a small screen or something on the back.

  2. I don’t think it needs multi touch. It’s like a smartlaptop in my oppinion. With those specs i don’ think multi touch is going to hurt it. (Unless your an apple fanboy)

  3. the sharp zaurus is reborn.

  4. HW support multi-touch, so apps like browser can do pinch-zoom.

  5. Hmmm. That thing is interesting.

    I would like to play with it.

    Feed it 2.1 at least and will sniff it out.

  6. how does it look like when it’s closed ? is there any small screen on the front ? it looks quite interesting but the only downside is the 1.6

  7. It looks interesting I’m just not sure when i would use it.

  8. I can see that screen being horrible to use, especially as the bottom of it seems to be lower than the height of the keyboard.

  9. a bad thing for android since they dont seem to care about compatibility to other android

  10. I want this! Finally a replacement for my G1 ^.^

  11. Damn this thing is ugly! I’d only buy it because of the TV tuner.

  12. I really like the girls showing them off.

  13. Do not want!

    The smartbook and the girls btw

  14. can that actually call people?

  15. Wow, I so want that! This thing just needs one tiny modification. A USB port to allow for a data stick. Then imagine trumping the “iDevice” crowd with a really functional, cheaper cost, & truly portable system. If that ever comes to the States, COUNT ME IN!
    I’ll take the girls too! Very attractive!

  16. I don’t like it.

    I prefer all those amazing tablets that are coming out soon.

  17. I’ll take the girls, not the smartbook.

  18. its interesting to the least….to bad its not hitting states….

    damn ….. I wish htc would bring out a android monster with the specs of th evo but with a slideing external keypad…

  19. I actually wish it was way more ugly.

    I would make a point of buying it.

  20. I like it how much it’s cost?
    I will be in Japan in Jun, hope to see it there.

  21. I am usually not one to judge a device only on its physical appearance, but this thing looks atrocious. Its monstrous and clunky looking. A small tablet or MID would be more my thing.

  22. Sweet– an android powered wizard.. Will it run my old apps? (tip calculator)

  23. Oh I would so buy one of these in a US ver. with Android 2.0 or better!
    I have owned several Sharp PDA’s through the years and the hardware is good. The size is perfect for my life where a iPad is to big and my phone (a moto Droid) is a bit cramped on keyboard and screen when working on it extensively.

    Now someone needs to develop a really good free form Database and I’ll be set.

  24. I am sorry to say but this will not sell good in Japan. Docomo tried this years ago and it bombed. It doesn’t matter if it is Android because they have other android phones here in Japan and their flagship Xperia X10 made by Sony. Japan buys Japanese products first. This netpad or whatever is not small enough or a fashion statement like the EVO or iPhone. For the fashion capital of Asia this will be another bomb and bad investment on AU’s part.

  25. There is multitouch support. Pinch to zoom works flawlessly, correct your article, please!


  26. I live in Japan and I am thinking of getting this. The price is about 36,000 yen, and the monthly bill looks to be about 5,000.

    To use it as a phone you need to buy a separate headset, which is 700 yen for a wired one or more (not sure exactly) for a bluetooth wireless one.

  27. Greg is correct that you can zoom in and out by pinching the touch screen.

  28. @Kwilk: Sharp is a Japanese company:

    I don’t know if this will be a hit or not but not everyone here is obsessed with fashion. My guess is that it is targeted at nerdy (otaku) males, not fashionable women. The demographic most definitely exists. And this is smaller than some of the netbooks I see people using on trains. It could almost fit in your pocket, and certainly in a briefcase or backpack.

  29. I got this a couple of days ago, happy so far!
    I used to have an HTC Universal back in the day so I don’t really mind the size, and I really like the keyboard on this.
    Multitouch also works, but I don’t really see the point on a device like this, why would you grease up your display?
    It has a track ball as well

  30. by the by, theres a 3 month waiting list for the black version of this in many shops now, so apparently it did hit home somewhere.

  31. wow… interesting
    can this beeen used outside Japan as well.. As in europe?? asis?? middle east

  32. Bring this to Canada as soon as possible!!! I wished for a Psion 5 replacement for so long :)

  33. Hi, can you know the name of headphone jack? or where can I find it?


  34. Hi, do you know the name of headphone jack? or where can I find it?


  35. Note to anyone asking yes it can be unlocked pretty much any phone can be if you have the software…. Now like I have a blackberry storm here in Jpan that has had a full unlock, and I have it on Docomo’s blackberry plan. Sometimes it runs sluggish and the data plan where you are at may really differ form the one of the carrier of your current phone you are trying to unlock…

  36. how can i use my sharp ISO1 android here in philippines?

  37. How can i use my sharp ISO1 android here in philippines?
    Is it possible to use My Prepaid SIM card or Universal Sim to activate my phone?

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