DoCoMo Raku-Raku touch screen mimics real buttons

This senior-friendly Android 4.0 phone comes with buzzing virtual buttons and a dedicated call support center.

NTT DoCoMo

You'd think there aren't any Japanese left whose fingers aren't incessantly caressing a smartphone touch screen, but NTT DoCoMo begs to differ.

The giant carrier will launch the Android 4.0 Raku-Raku Smart Phone on August 1, targeting novice touch-screen users, with a display that mimics the feel of old-fashioned buttons.

When a menu item on the screen is touched, it gets highlighted. The user then has to push more firmly to confirm the choice. The handset responds with a click and slight vibration.

Services available on the phone include 1Seg TV broadcasts, emergency disaster bulletins, and mobile wallet functions. It will come with a flat-rate packet service for 2,980 yen ($38).

The Raku-Raku has a 4-inch TFT LCD, an 8-megapixel camera, simplified menu choices, and large fonts. DoCoMo didn't say it's aimed at older users, but that seems to be the case.

It also has a dedicated phone support center available at the touch of a button.

And if the colors are any indication, it's available in gold, navy, and pink.

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