Sunday, July 21, 2024

An absurd new phone is coming to crush the iPhone and Android

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A render of the Up Mobile smartphone.Up Network

Just when you thought Web3 — the name given to a decentralized version of the internet — had been consigned to the history books, along comes a new smartphone project to try to convince you otherwise, and, in an attempt to ensure it appears as up-to-date as possible, adds another buzzword to the list: AI.

What I’m talking about is called the Up Mobile, and if mention of Web3 and AI together weren’t enough, it also has some blockchain technology inside for good measure. If this were Buzzword Bingo, someone would be shouting “House!” right about now.

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But I haven’t finished yet, as this isn’t just another Android phone either. According to the Roy Liu, co-founder of the Up Network, which is responsible for the Up Mobile, the App Store and Google Play Store aren’t the place to find Web3 apps due to “unfriendly terms,” so a Web3/AI/blockchain device needs a different ecosystem to survive. To this end, the Up Mobile will use software built on Meta’s Move programming language, enabled by Movement Labs and its blockchain technology.

Apparently, the partnership with Movement Labs will, “make web3 accessible to everyone, marking an era of consumer web3 revolution.” Stop us if you’ve heard that one before, but don’t forget, the Up Mobile includes AI unlike all those silly NFTs that led the last Web3 “revolution” so it must be much better. According to the company, the AI algorithms will increase security around face and fingerprint recognition. Plus, large language models (LLM) will operate locally on the phone and assist with general productivity and organization tasks, increasing privacy and reliability.

What else? We checked in about the Up Mobile’s specification, and were told it will have a 6.95-inch screen with a 144Hz refresh rate and an FHD+ resolution, with a MediaTek Dimensity 8200 processor and 12GB of RAM for power. On the back there are three cameras: a 100-megapixel main camera, joined by two other 8MP and 2MP cameras. It’s not stated, but we assume this will be a (no doubt disappointing) 8MP wide-angle camera and a 2MP depth or macro camera.  Completing the specification is a 5,000mAh battery and 256GB of storage.

The Up Mobile is expected to be released in October 2024 and cost $699, and preorders will open through the Up Networks website on July 24.

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