CES 2006: Kyocera Strobe Messaging Phone
By Mike Hanlon
January 5, 2006
January 6, 2006 Kyocera Wireless unveiled its new Strobe wireless handset at the Consumer Electronics Show today. The Strobe features a curved candy-bar design that opens lengthwise to reveal a second colour display and a full QWERTY keyboard inside, making it ideal for text messaging, email and instant messaging (IM). In consumer testing, the Strobe has apparently drawn rave reviews from younger demographics, impressed by its IM-enhancing keyboard, digital camera and other features and an expected price-point below other similarly featured devices on the market. Strobe is expected to launch at CDMA carriers globally in Q2 2006.
From the outside, Strobe's hourglass figure and loop antenna set it apart. A quick flip of a thumb, however, reveals the QWERTY keypad and larger color screen for optimal viewing of games, photos and much more. A unique feature allows users to alternate between the open and closed modes as many times as they like during a session without disrupting the phone's basic functionality. Shutterbugs won't miss a shot using Strobe's simple VGA camera with a flash, dedicated camera button and digital zoom. And multimedia messaging service (MMS) makes sending pictures a breeze.(a)
"QWERTY keypads aren't just for the business user anymore, and Strobe gives younger consumers a messaging device designed just for them," said Jim Kelly, executive vice president and chief operating officer at Kyocera Wireless. "Kyocera is all about simplifying the user experience and when it comes to texting and instant messaging, that's exactly what we've done. Strobe is stylish and functional and we're confident it will be the hands-down best value in its class when it hits the market."
Strobe includes a WAP 2.0 browser(a), built-in polyphonic ring tones, screen savers and caller alerts. Convenience features include a contact directory and voice-activated dialing. Productivity tools include scheduler, calculator, alarm clock, stopwatch, tip calculator, countdown timer and voice memos.
Strobe is CDMA2000 1X enabled and will be offered to carriers with JAVA or BREW software to support downloading of games, ringtones and much more to further personalize the handset.
The Kyocera Strobe measures 4.24 in x 2.05 in x .95 in (108 mm x 52 mm x 24 mm) and weighs 4.0 oz (115 grams). It has up to 3 hours of talk time, and up to 150 hours of standby. A complete line of Genuine Accessories by Kyocera(TM) will also be available for Strobe, including a new Sport Strap that's perfect for tethering the phone to a backpack.
Strobe will reach the retail market in Q2 2006 and wireless service providers who offer the phone will set their respective retail prices.