Motorola swivels around with the Flipout

The Motorola Flipout is an Android smartphone with a difference. It's a square touch screen phone with a swiveling QWERTY keyboard.

Even though we heard about the Motorola Flipout earlier this year , we didn't know if it would be coming to the U.S. until this Tuesday when Motorola announced it would be available from AT&T . The square phone reminds us a lot of the Nokia Twist , especially because it swivels open to reveal a QWERTY keyboard.

In person, the phone does feel quite tiny. It's odd to see Android on such a small display (about 2.8 inches diagonally); it reminds us a little of the Motorola Charm in that sense. It ships with Android 2.1 and has the enhanced MotoBlur interface, which we think might end up too cluttered on a screen this size. The Flipout measures 2.63 inches long by 2.63 inches wide by 0.67 inch thick, and seems to swivel open and close quite easily during the few minutes I had trying it out. The keyboard itself felt quite usable despite its size -- the keys have a nice raised texture -- but we didn't care for the tiny little navigation toggle in the corner.

Motorola appears to be targeting the younger fashionable crowd with interchangeable battery covers. The Flipout ships with "dark sapphire" and "saffron" color covers, and you can get more color options as well. Other features include a 3-megapixel camera with Kodak Perfect Touch technology, WiFi, GPS, 3G, and Motorola's CrystalTalk Technology for clearer call quality.

To get more of an idea of how it looks, check out our video and our photo gallery. The Flipout will be available October 17th for $79.99 after a new two year contract.

 

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