Emporia takes a wrench to Android with heavily-customised first smartphone

Mobile
Hello, tech fans. I'm Luke Westaway from CNET here at Mobile World Congress in 2014 checking out a smartphone with a unique twist on Android. It's the Emporia Emporia Smarts. Let's take a look. So the idea with this phone is being to make it as simple as possible. It's running Android version 4.3 but you wouldn't know it to look at it because it's been so heavily customized. The interface as you can see is just these really simple blocks and I'm told that this phone was built on the premise of what you press is what you get. So for example if I tap the battery you get a little in-depth analysis of how much power is left and if I press over here on the signal you get a little breakdown of that as well. It comes with a stylus and it also has hardware keys along the bottom here for call answering and for ending your calls. If I spin it around on to the side you can see here there's a button with a little light bulb on it and what that does is trigger the flash so that you can use the phone as a flashlight. So some nice touches then and another one is this plastic prong on the end of the charging cable. Now what that means is that you're not able to plug the micro-USB prong in the wrong way. Apart from that you get a 4.5-inch screen with a 640 x 560 pixel resolution. It's got an 8-megapixel camera on the back and a 1-megapixel camera on the front. It has a 1.2 gigahertz quad-core processor too, so it should be reasonably powerful. It's gonna cost 200 euros when it comes out in Europe towards the end of this year. I'm told that there are plans for US launch, but it's not gonna happen in 2014. What do you think of the Android customization and are you tempted to buy? Let me know and check out CNET.com for loads more from Mobile World Congress 2014.

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