Sprint and Kyocera are doubling up efforts to attract smartphone subscribers with the first dual-touchscreen smartphone, the Kyocera Echo, with the capability to do two tasks at the same time, such as viewing email on one screen while surfing the web on the other. Another dual use is to view photos and look at phone contacts at the same.
The dual 3.5-inch LCD WVGA (800 x 480 pixels) capacitive touchscreens turn into 4.7 inches diagonally and 800 x 960 pixels when opened. The theory is that two screens are better than one.
The Kyocera Echo runs Android 2.2 Froyo and has a 1GHz Snapdragon processor, 5-megapixel camera, stereo Bluetooth, Wi-Fi, Wi-Fi hotspot capable, 1 gigabyte (GB) of onboard memory, and an 8GB microSD card for the
external memory card slot supporting cards up to 32GB.
The Kyocera Echo will be available this spring for $199.99 with a new
two-year service agreement or eligible upgrade and after a $100
mail-in rebate. The Kyocera Echo is described as thicker than the
original Droid, with some bloggers suggesting that it was a two-screen gimmick.
The good news is that it ships with an extra battery because the dual
screens draw dual-battery juice. We don't know yet if the dual-screen
phenomena will echo across carriers and manufacturers.
Kyocera Echo offers customized apps that are optimized for the
dual-screen experience, including VueQue, an app that lets users watch a video in one display, while browsing, queuing
and buffering additional videos in the other. The easy-to-use device
offers four modes of interaction:
Single-Screen Mode with all the functionality of a single-display touchscreen smartphone.
Simul-Task Mode with two of the phone's seven core apps running concurrently, but independently, on the device's dual displays.
Optimized Mode with both displays supporting a single, optimized app with complementary functionality and enhanced usability.