I?m going to go out on a limb and say it: Eye candy is good. That sentiment works in a variety of settings, and it's no less true here, in this future-forward look at some crazy cellular concepts, courtesy of WebUrbanist.
Whenever the site focuses its eye on tech, you know there are going to be some droolworthy gadgets involved. WebUrbanist is geared toward architecture and alternative art, so form factor is clearly a major component in its recent list of 15 Cool Cell Phone Concepts.
Some of them are quite cool, while others are just plain weird. But hot or bizarre, all of the ideas are intriguing. The following are some of the most noteworthy concepts. (Click here for the complete list.)
So which ones can't you wait to get your hands on?
From the coiled charging cord and rotary dial to the strangely familiar home appliance design, it seems like UK-based designer Vladimir Rachev couldn't decide between an old-fashioned landline phone or an iron. The only concern is whether putting that thing in your pocket would cause injury or not.
If I were a 10-year-old boy asked to design a cell phone, I imagine it would look something like the Blackberry Terminator 9900. (See it in action in the Parkoz Hardware Transformers Cell Phone vid, here.) The blogs all picked up this Tranformers concept a couple years ago, but fanboys who fell for this gimmick are still waiting.
Unique? Absolutely. Practical? Not even. Way too cool to actually use, Tirshathah Hunter's Conduit concept phone reminds me of an old-school erector set. It features calling, camera and PDA functionality (including stylus). Users can also adjust the pieces to support a roll-up screen.
Sleek and futuristic, the Morph line of concept phones, from Nokia, offers various versions for different tastes. (The cell phone/bangle bracelet definitely appeals to the girly girl in me.) The collection features self-cleaning surfaces, and integrated electronics and nanotechnology in a slim form factor.
Apparently, when it comes to cell phones, wrists are hot. Here's another that wraps around for the ultimate in portability. The snake-like BenQ-Siemens concept kind of reminds me of a 60s take on futuristic design. (Couldn't you imagine this device set off with go-go boots and a beehive?)
I have a seriously visceral reaction to the Glassy Glassy phone, by Mac Funamizu: Forget the future. I want it now. The graphics and numerals on the transparent screen don't show up until the phone is powered on. For something this cool, I?d even be willing to carry around the bottle of Windex required to keep this baby smudge-proof.
Someone's getting cheeky, eh? But the looks of the flask-shaped Cheers ? which is seriously the name of this concept phone ? isn't the only thing that's kind of boozy. The device runs on alcohol. Actually, it's an alcohol cell, which is reportedly more energy efficient than standard batteries. Sounds good, but even so, consumers would have to be tippling pretty hard to appreciate the gimmicky design.
Whether good or bad, all of these design ideas get points for creativity. I just wish current phone makers were willing to take more risks like these. There's no reason we couldn't have wearable bangle phones or a shape-shifting device right now. But sadly, it will probably be a long time before these kinds of innovative concepts actually hit the production line. In the mean time, at least we have plenty of creative concoctions to drool over.