ZTE's Crowdsourced Phone Gets a Name, a Price, and Needs Your Help Again

...

LAS VEGAS—Call it the Hawkeye, if you please. ZTE's Project CSX, a phone whose ideas have been crowdsourced from start to finish, now has a name, a mock-up, and some unique features. But the crowdsourcing adventure isn't over.

"The color, material, and finish will be decided on by users. After that, we'll do the software experience—people will be able to submit crazy ideas of what they want for a skin and apps," ZTE VP Jeff Yee said.

The Hawkeye's core idea is for a phone that can stick to a wall and be controlled through eye tracking and gestures. The phone itself won't be sticky; the stickiness will be part of a case that comes with the phone, Yee said. Now's your chance to choose the Hawkeye's color and software skin.

The mock-ups I saw here at CES (pictured above) are flat smartphones with 5.5-inch screens, but very different back designs. One has a flat, smooth, dark blue back. The other has a ridged green back, which reminds me of a gecko lizard—geckos stick to walls, of course.

The prototypes aren't totally faithful. The Hawkeye will have dual rear cameras, for instance, and they aren't on the current samples. Yee didn't provide many other clear specs for the phone, saying that it will have a "good battery" and a "nice screen," for instance. He also isn't totally clear which global LTE carriers it'll work on, although it'll work with AT&T and T-Mobile here in the US. That'll get straightened out soon, he said.

ZTE is also putting the phone on Kickstarter for pre-orders. It'll cost $199 unlocked on the crowdfunding site, which the company is just using as a shopping platform—ZTE doesn't need the funds to build the phone. It'll cost considerably more when it goes off presale.

"It's a chance for [buyers] to lock in a good price now. For ZTE, we've never taken pre-orders this early; we can have our supply chain based on pre-orders," Yee said.

But will consumers be willing to put down real money for a phone whose specs are this vague, before elements like the software skin are set? ZTE won't even specify which processor is going into the phone, which leads me to feel more than a bit concerned about how well the eye-tracking functionality will work. But Yee seems open to correcting his course as fan opinion warrants.

The ZTE Hawkeye is on Kickstarter now. The next phases of voting on body design and software will happen at https://community.zteusa.com/community/csx.

Categories
APPLICATIONS
0 Comment

Leave a Reply

Captcha image


RELATED BY

  • 5300c769af79e

    9 Java Programming Myths Busted

    Here, we bust up nine of the most prominent myths surrounding this widely used programming language.In spite of this, there are many persistent myths about the language, even among those who use Java daily.
  • 5300c769af79e

    Report: FTC Extends Google Android Antitrust Probe

    The Federal Trade Commission has reportedly extended its probe into Google's Android business.At issue is Google's policy of requiring phone makers releasing Android devices to either bundle all or none of Google's apps (Chrome Browser, Google Play, YouTube, etc.
  • 5300c769af79e

    Tomb Raider Now Available on SHIELD TV Natively Via Google Play

    The Tomb Raider title from 2013, which is the Lara Croft origin story, is now natively available on Android, exclusive to the NVIDIA SHIELD TV.This port of Tomb Raider consists of the same environmental puzzles, combat experience, and tombs to discover, but given it is now on Android, players can also expect to find Google Play Achievements and cloud saves with a Google Play Games sign-in.
  • 5300c769af79e

    10 Tech Companies That Stole the Spotlight In 2016

    While budgets stayed nearly flat in 2016, companies invested more in cloud IoT, and AI.Here's a quick look at some of the statistics that illustrate these key trends from 2016: But which companies and technologies helped drive these trends?