The shiny new old-school tech isn’t just for people who aren’t ready to give up what’s always worked for them..
Although Japan is home to some of the hottest electronics companies in the world, the country can be surprisingly attached to old technology. It’s only been two years since pager service officially ended in Japan, after all, and in another example of this philosophy if it ain’t broke don’t fix it, KDDINameone of Japan’s largest telecommunications providers, proudly launches a new flip phone model this month.
Pictured above and called the G’zOne Type-XXit’s the latest in a line that began in 2000 with the G’zOne C303CA, which was not a flip phone, but still doesn’t look modern by today’s standards.
▼ G’zOne C303CA
With most of Japan having switched to smartphones, there is no longer much demand for feature phones, as phones with more functions than voice calls but less capabilities than a fully internet-connected device are technically called . Even in Japan, flip phones are now commonly referred to as “garakei”, a contraction of the words Galapagos and keitai denwa (“cellphone”), comparing the persistent technology to animals that survive in the ecosystem of remote islands, but do not exist in any other part of the world, and it’s been nine whole years since the last new model for the G’ZOne line.
So why bother putting a new garakei on the market? Durability and ease of use, according to KDDI. As its rugged appearance suggests, the G’zOne Type-XX is built to take a lot of punishment. Designed by Casio and manufactured by Kyocera, its case will be protect its internal components from the impact of a 1.8 meter (5.9 ft) drop, and its other protection features include water resistance (including salt water) and dust resistance.
▼ The G’zOne Type-XX is available in two colors, Liquid Green or Solid Black, and is priced at 52,800 yen (459 USD).
For this reason, KDDI, which administers Japan to mobile network, says the G’zOne Type-XX is ideal for the communication needs of outdoor sports and hiking enthusiasts, and also a good choice for professional fishers, contractors, farmers and others who work in an environment where their phone may be regularly exposed to environmental conditions difficult it would scratch the screen of a smartphone. Many of these people also spend a good part of their day wearing heavy-duty work gloves. this can make trying to use a touchscreen an extreme exercise in frustration, so the G’zOne Type-XX sticks with good old buttons for all of its operation.
Still, it’s a surprise to see a company announce a new garakei, especially with KDDI set to shut down its 3G phone network in April, a move that will render many flip phones still in use unusable. However, the G’zOne Type-XX will work with the company’s 4G network so buyers can still use the new old-fashioned phone for a while, especially since they won’t risk breaking it. .
Source: Asahi Television Going through Door News Live Going through Jin, NHK, KDDIName
Top picture: KDDIName
Insert images: KDDI (1, 2)
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