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HolidayBuyer's Guide

Kin Two

Favorite contacts

Communicating with contacts

Left pane

Share the news

Choose your contacts

Select

Phone app

Kin Studio

Slider design

Top view

The Kin Two was the second device revealed at Microsoft's event on Monday. It has some higher-end features than the Kin One, but both devices have the same user interface. The home screen is called Loop and the center pane (shown here) shows all the latest updates from your contacts.

The latest information appears at the top of the screen and is then pushed down as more news comes in. You can also share updates and news with your contacts, which we'll show you a bit later in the slideshow.
Caption by / Photo by Bonnie Cha/CNET
The right pane is where you can add your favorite contacts. You can drag and drop contacts into any position, though the size of the images cannot be changed. It's a fixed layout in that sense.
Caption by / Photo by Bonnie Cha/CNET
When you tap on an individual contact, you'll be given the option to either call or text the person or you can launch the contact card.
Caption by / Photo by Bonnie Cha/CNET
Finally, on the left pane, you'll find all your device's applications, including the phone, e-mail, Web browser, and music.
Caption by / Photo by James Martin/CNET
OK, so say you want to share a piece of content that comes through on Loop. To do so, you simply drag that tile down to the green dot at the bottom of the screen. Afterward, you swipe to the right pane and choose your recipients by dragging the contact down to the green dot, just like you did previously.
Caption by / Photo by Bonnie Cha/CNET
Once you hit the green dot, you'll be presented with a page like this that shows you what you're sharing and who you're sharing it with.
Caption by / Photo by Bonnie Cha/CNET
Finally, you just choose the method in which you want to share and voila, it's sent. Admittedly, we weren't too sure about this sharing feature when we first saw it demoed; however, once we got to try it, we warmed up to it a bit. It's certainly unique that's for sure.
Caption by / Photo by Bonnie Cha/CNET
Here is an image of the onscreen dialpad.
Caption by / Photo by James Martin/CNET
Another unique and cool feature about the Kin devices is the Kin Studio service. This is basically like Microsoft's My Phone service but you can use it on any Web browser and it's based on Silverlight. Kin Studio will backup your phone's contacts, messages, photos and videos, and it can create a time line of all the photos, all the people you've been in touch with, and all the messages you've received in a time period as shown here.
Caption by / Photo by Bonnie Cha/CNET
The Kin Two also features a slider design. However, unlike the Kin One, the Kin Two supports a rotating screen.
Caption by / Photo by Bonnie Cha/CNET
The Kin Two also features a 3.5mm headphone jack on top of the device.
Caption by / Photo by James Martin/CNET
Updated:
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