Have you ever wondered what a phone would be like if it had the customization of Android, the ability to look like a Windows Phone, and the security similar to that of a BlackBerry device? If you have, it turns out that you might not have to wait much longer to get your hands on such a device. The first smartphone made by a German company, the Linshof i8, is expected to be all of these things - and it will supposedly be available starting Q1 of 2015.
A quick rundown of what how this device looks and what it features will likely leave you scratching your head. It’s not that it’s a confusing phone, it’s just that it seems like it covers all of the bases... something that no other manufacturer has really been able to do yet. So just how likely is it that this company who we’ve never heard of will be able to pull off such a stunt? Who knows right now.
What I do know is that I like what I see, both in terms of design and features. The design is just as bizarre as some of the specs being thrown around, with an odd octagonal shape instead of your typical rectangular shape. It’s actually quite similar to the Motorola Photon, except for much larger and sharper edges. The phone also looks to be quite a bit thinner, as you might expect a smartphone to be these days. I’m not saying I think the design will be a hit by any means, because not all “new” designs are welcomed with open arms, but it’s a design that I personally kind of like.
As for the specs? To match the 8-sided design, you also have an octa-core processor... of some type. Nobody is really sure who makes the processor yet, so other than having eight cores there’s not much to write about there. The phone will also have 3GB of RAM (on par with the more powerful flagships on the market) as well as 80GB of storage - and is explained as having two sets of storage. 64GB of storage will be left for the user for media, etc., and 16GB will be left for apps and the operating system itself. The 16GB portion of storage is also supposed to work much faster than the other 64GB, so that’s an interesting concept to hear about. The i8 will feature a 5-inch HD display.
The i8 also claims to have a 13-megapixel rear-facing camera and an 8-megapixel front-facing camera. 13-megapixel cameras and up are becoming the new norm for rear-facing cameras, and many manufacturers are beginning to focus on the importance of the front-facing camera as well. Both cameras, at least in terms of megapixel measurements, are again on par (and even slightly above when it comes to the front-facing camera) with comparable flagships.
The i8 claims that it will run on Android 5.0 (Lollipop) with “super responsive Linshof UI” or optional Linux. The Linshof UI, judging from screenshots, looks fairly similar to Windows Phone’s design with a little more customization going on. However, since the phone would be running on Android it doesn’t seem like it would be a difficult task to make it look more like your typical Android, either through the use of alternative launchers from the Play Store or through root and flash.
We’re kind of limited on what exactly we get with this new and strangely designed Android device, but there’s one thing that this company isn’t shy to reveal, and that’s the price tag of the device. The website claims that the i8 will sell for $380 (that’s US dollars), which is... a pretty insane price for a phone like that, and probably what makes this entire idea unbelievable. I half expect for this price to shoot way up if this phone actually comes to fruition, or for the specs to have been way off. I know that “cheap and good” Android phones are on the rise, but not that cheap and that good. I feel like Linshof would be able to sway a few people its way off of the specs of the i8 alone if it can manage to pull off what it promises, but with a price tag like that? I don’t know. It just seems like it’s too good to be true.
With the website claiming that the phone will be available in Q1 of 2015, we don’t have that long to wait to see what’s really going on with this company and this phone. Part of me wants to believe, but the skeptical side of me (which often wins internal arguments) tells me that something isn’t right here.
Readers, what are your thoughts on the Linshof i8? Do you hope that this phone in all of its cheap and powerful splendor is real? Let us know in the comments below!