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Motorola squares up Android phone with enhanced MotoBlur

Jun 2, 2010 — by Eric Brown — from the LinuxDevices Archive — 1 views

Motorola announced a square-shaped, low-end Android phone, featuring a pivot design that exposes a hidden, five-row QWERTY keypad. The “Flipout” is equipped with a 2.8-inch, 320 x 240 touchscreen, GPS, WiFi, Bluetooth, and a three-megapixel camera, and runs Android 2.1 with a new version of Motorola's MotoBlur UI layer.

The Flipout lacks the reverse-flip gymnastics of Motorola's earlier Backflip, but its side-rotating pivot mechanism might offer the stylistic differentiation some mobile customers crave. Measuring a scant 2.64 x 2.64 x 0.67 inches when closed, the Flipout extends to twice that size when the QWERTY keyboard is pivoted to a position underneath the screen. The touchscreen, meanwhile,  measures only 2.8 inches with 320 x 240 resolution.

Motorola Flipout

Motorola does not list the processor used by the Flipout. While the phone supports H.264 video playback, there are no claims of 720p video quality, let alone 1080p. The phone ships with 512MB internal memory, as well as a removable 2GB flash card, expandable to 32GB, says Motorola.

Closed, the Flipout measures only 2.64 inches square

The Flipout supports WCDMA and GSM cellular networks, as well as HSDPA and HSUPA 3G data services, says Motorola. In addition, the Flipout supplies WiFi, Bluetooth, assisted GPS, and FM radio reception, says the company.

Flipout with keyboard pivoted open

Other Flipout features are said to include a three-megapixel camera with digital zoom, as well as a USB port and an audio jack. The phone also features Motorola's CrystalTalk Plus microphone and speaker configuration, which adds a second microphone for improved voice quality, according to the company.

Enhanced MotoBlur offers filtering, push email

The Flipout ships with a new version of the MotoBlur UI layer, (and associated social networking oriented web service), which is already available on other low- and mid-range Motorola Android phones. As before, MotoBlur syncs friends, emails, messages, Facebook, MySpace, and Twitter feeds and happenings with continuous updates and back-ups, says Motorola.

The new version offers filters for the Happenings and Messages widgets, letting users filter out unwanted updates and messages, says the company. In addition, corporate email can now be pushed automatically to a MotoBlur phone.

MotoBlur's new Battery Manager is said to help users manage the phone's power consumption, and a new Data Manager helps manage data usage. MotoBlur also offers seven home screens, and provides options to move and resize pre-loaded widgets.

As before, MotoBlur offers integrated GPS tracking and remote data wipe, for finding a lost phone or remotely clearing personal data on a phone. (See the below video for a demonstration of other new features in the enhanced MotoBlur.)

The Flipout runs Android 2.1 and ships with Google Search, Google Maps for Mobile, Gmail, and Android Market, Motorola says. In addition, the phone is touted as "Adobe Flash enabled," although it would seem to require Android 2.2 to offer the full Flash 10.1 player.

The Flipout is available with black, raspberry (left), or saffron (right) backing

Specifications listed for the Flipout include:

  • Memory — 512MB internal memory with removable 2GB microSD card, expandable to optional 32GB card
  • Display — 2.8 inch 320 x 240 (QVGA) TFT
  • Cellular:
    • WCDMA 900/2100
    • GSM 850/900/1800/1900
    • HSDPA 7.2Mbps (Category 7/8)
    • HSUPA 2Mbps
    • EDGE Class 12
    • GPRS Class 12
  • Other wireless:
    • WiFi
    • Bluetooth 2.1 + EDR
    • aGPS/eCompass
  • Camera — 3 megapixel with digital zoom, fixed-focus
  • Other hardware features:
    • USB 2.0 HS
    • 3.5mm headset jack
    • FM radio
    • CrystalTalk Plus speaker and dual microphone system
    • Rotator five row QWERTY keyboard
    • Black, raspberry, and saffron colors
  • Battery:
    • 1170 mAh
    • 275 min. WCDMA talk time
    • 357 min. GSM talk time
    • 377 hrs. WCDMA standby time
    • 365 hrs. GSM standby time
  • Dimensions — 2.64 x 2.64 x 0.67 inches (67 x 67 x 17mm)
  • Weight — 4.2 oz (120 g)
  • Operating system — Android 2.1 with MotoBlur

MotoBlur enhancements in Motorola YouTube video
(Click to enlarge)


The FlipOut will be available "in certain regions around the world beginning in Q2 2010," says Motorola. More information may be found here.

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