As Trinity, Neo, and Morpheus battle another round in the Matrix to save Zion, you might notice that they've reloaded their gadget arsenals with a new communications device. The limited-edition Samsung SPH-n270 is an exact replica of the phone used in the movie but with extra features. While it sports a pop-up release mechanism similar to the Nokia 8110's--which you might remember drooling over during the last movie--the similarities between the two phones end there. For starters, this tri-mode model runs on the CDMA 800/1900 and AMPS 800 networks operated by Sprint PCS.
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Reunited: Neo and Trinity in one of the phone's themed screensavers.
In keeping with the Matrix theme, a different scene from the movie is associated with each of the 10 screens in the main Menu mode. We defaulted to Matrix Reloaded, but two other styles--Animatrix and Camera--feature animated scenes and a camera and filmlike motif, respectively. (Note: There is no camera on this phone.)
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Getting reloaded: Pressing the two side buttons extends the phone's earpiece.
There are no higher-end features such as games or wireless Web browsing on this 1xRTT-voice-only mobile. However, it is e911 ready for when you find yourself in a Neo-like jam, and it lets you use two-way SMS. The 15 preloaded polyphonic and voice tones are clearly the niftiest feature. Our early favorite is Cypher asking the infamous question "Why, why didn't I take the blue pill?" You also get an old-style-phone ring tone--an already sought-after commodity on most mobiles.
Like most limited-edition products, the n270 will be available only online--in this case, from a special area on Samsung's Web site for a hefty $500. That's a high price to pay for a phone that looks and feels more like a toy than a reliable communications device. But then again, since money is a mere facet of our mechanical overlords' carefully constructed alternate reality, it might not matter to you.