The smartphone industry gives us not only powerful flagship models and low-cost mid-budget options. Every year, several mobile phones appear on the market that you cannot describe them as anything but “strange” – either because of the shape of the case or because of their unusual features.
In this article, we will introduce you to ten such smartphones. While they are full of quirks, if your girlfriend is a fan of all things weird, then these phones will be right up her alley.
Table Of Contents
1. Yotaphone 2
Perhaps the most prominent representative of the category of “unusual” smartphones in recent years is the Yotaphone. The Russian company Yota Devices wanted to solve the problem of batteries “dying” too quickly: the second screen of the Yotaphone uses E-Ink technology; it’s very energy efficient and displays not only information about time and weather but can even be used for surfing the Internet. Unfortunately, the sales of this device were not too impressive both because of the rather high price and supply problems.
But it seems like Yota Devices do not plan to stop. A few days ago, the company announced Yotaphone 3. Unfortunately, there is still very little information about it, but it is certain that it will also use a double screen.
Many have probably heard about the Yotaphone; there’s been a lot of news about it when it was announced. But Nanex is a completely different story. This smartphone was designed specifically for those who did not want to use those new smartphones with gigantic touchscreens.
The size of the Nanex display is only 2.45 inches diagonally: it seems to be the smallest commercially available Android-smartphone in the world. In addition, its casing is protected from water and dust (using IP53). Unfortunately, a weak processor with the frequency of 1 GHz and the old operating system Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich are simply too weak to do anything in 2019. But still, when it comes to the title of one of the most unusual smartphones, Nanex earns it with ease.
3. Caterpillar Cat S60
The Cat S60 from Caterpillar just looks like a protected smartphone, nothing more. But an attentive observer will notice unusual sensors on the rear panel of Cat S60. This is a real full-fledged thermal camera produced by the well-known company Flir! Perhaps this is the only modern mobile phone with such a camera on board.
It can be useful in a variety of working conditions. This is a good and reliable smartphone to gift your girlfriend with. If you don’t have one, but you want to share this beautiful phone with someone, visit this Russian dating site!
As already mentioned, the Cat S60 is reliably protected from weather and falling – it has received the certificate MIL-STD-810G and can land on concrete from a height of up to 1.8 m without damage. It has Qualcomm Snapdragon 617 chipset, 3 GB of RAM, 32 GB of memory for storing data, and a 3800 mAh battery in it.
4. Xiaomi Mi MIX
Mi MIX from the Chinese company Xiaomi is one of the most commercially popular smartphones on our list. It isn’t produced in large quantities, but still, it is much easier to buy it than the Cat S60. The main striking feature is its 6.4-inch screen which occupies 91% of the front panel area. It seems that it was Mi MIX that set the trend for practically “frameless” cell phones which have become so popular in the past year.
The insides of the Mi MIX are pretty decent: it has the powerful Qualcomm Snapdragon 821 chipset, 6 GB of RAM, and as much as 256 GB of memory for storing data. According to some reports, Xiaomi plans to introduce Mi MIX 2 soon.
5. Lenovo Phab 2 Pro
Some time ago, Google and several other companies created a new Tango platform which was supposed to help to create AR content and promote the concept of augmented reality to the masses. Apparently, Tango will soon be forgotten, but thanks to it, a very unusual smartphone appeared on the market.
Phab 2 Pro is one of the few devices with the Tango support which was able to reach the shelves of the stores. Thanks to a whole array of cameras and sensors, things that are real and virtual are combined on the device’s screen: virtual objects can interact with real ones. Unfortunately, these functions were not supported by the developers of applications and games – Phab 2 just isn’t that popular to invest so much money and effort into it.
This fall, in iOS 11 (and, therefore, in all modern iPhones) a new ARKit API will appear. It will allow approximately the same manipulations with virtual objects, and it has much more prospects – it is assumed that hundreds of millions of already sold iPhones will support the technology.
6. Monohm runcible
Let us turn our attention to the strangest of models! Runcible is a smartphone that was created as a replica of an old pocket watch. This is a round mobile phone with the same round display which is considered to be one of the most unique in the history of the industry.
As it was said in the blog of the Indiegogo campaign of Runcible, with which they raised all the needed funds for its release, “Runcible differs from ordinary smartphones in that it is a timeless piece of art and technology that you can enjoy for years and even decades.” Naturally, it is very difficult to find this device on the free market – it was released in a very limited edition, and it is of no interest to the overwhelming number of ordinary consumers.
7. Sirin Labs Solarin
It is time for one of the most expensive smartphones in the world! Solarin from the London-based company Sirin Labs costs $14,000, and it weighs more than 230 grams.
But this is not the main feature of Solarin. It has a special switch which allows the user to instantly disable almost all smartphone functions, except for outgoing voice calls and encrypted text messages. The well-known companies in the industry, Koolspan and Zimperium, worked on the security of information inside the device.
It was assumed that Solarin would be bought by high-level financial companies in which leaking any information could lead to losses of millions of dollars. The idea was unsuccessful: the smartphone earned only about 10 million dollars, and Sirin Labs had to cut about a third of the staff because of it.
8. Oukitel K10000
The unusual design and low cost with decent technical characteristics is a distinctive feature of the smartphones of many not-so-well-known Chinese brands. But the K10000 differs from a rather successful startup called Oukitel with another important characteristic: its battery capacity is as much as 10 thousand mAh. Thanks to this, the K10000 is almost the only Android smartphone that can work for a whole week without any need for recharging (under “normal” conditions, however, this period is reduced to 3-4 days).
Naturally, because of such a huge battery, the case and the weight of the K10000 are noticeably larger than your average smartphone – it’s almost 14 mm thick and as weights as much as 317 grams, respectively.
9. Samsung Galaxy S8
This is extremely rare for the modern flagship, released by the market leader in the face of Samsung, to turn out to be one of the most unusual smartphones of the year. At least its first half.
For the first time in the history of Samsung, the Galaxy S8 got rid of the Home button on the front panel. Now even more of it is occupied by a dazzling screen that even got its own name – Infinity Display. Engineers and designers of the Korean company decided that the industry is moving in this direction and were the first (LG G6 was released a little earlier, but its characteristics do not allow it to be called a full-fledged flagship at the moment, and its screen is not quite as big).
10. NEC Medias W
The Japanese company NEC has managed to create quite an exotic Android-smartphone. Their apparatus, called the Medias W, looks like a clamshell with two touchscreens. This was done in order to get some semblance of one big screen in the expanded state for more convenient browsing or using one of the screens as a QWERTY-keyboard without reducing the usable area of the second screen.
The smartphone uses two 4.3-inch screens with the resolution of 960×540. The smartphone uses Android 4.1 Jelly Bean, and it has a dual-core Qualcomm Snapdragon MSM8960 processor with a clock frequency of 1.5 GHz, 1 GB of RAM, and 16 GB of internal memory.