An intriguing bamboo mobile phone named ADzero is set to launch in the UK before the year is out following a positive response to the design, which was originally intended for the Chinese market. Though the intention is that the phone will run Android, relatively little is known about the phone itself. ADzero's Jerry Lao indicated to Gizmag that the designers are leaving all hardware options on the table until production is ready to roll.
UK newspaper the Telegraph has one or two details, though. Apparently the phone will be made from treated four-year-old organic bamboo, and will be half the weight of an iPhone. Its camera will feature a ring flash surrounding the lens to minimize shadows caused by the flash. And judging by the size of the display, the ADzero will almost certainly feature a touchscreen interface.
"Bamboo may seem like a strange material to use for a phone," the ADzero's designer Kieron-Scott Woodhouse told the Telegraph, "but it's actually extremely strong and very durable, perfect qualities for this kind of application."
I'll wager bamboo doesn't strike you as that strange a choice, what with its being a low-cost, sustainable source of material already adapted from its everyday use (feeding pandas) to bend to the will of manufacturers of notebook computers, bicycles, scooters and perhaps truest to the grass's natural form (and my own favorite), iPhone docks.
The idea of crafting mobile telephones from more sustainable materials makes an awful lot of sense, given the rate it which people are wont to upgrade. It's not a new idea, though. Various prototypes of phones made from sustainable soft wood sources have appeared over the years. Unlike mere prototypes, it seems as though the ADzero is making a laudable attempt at commercial viability, though the Telegraph claims the ADzero will be targeted at design outlets, and is perhaps unlikely to become a mass-produced item on the grand scale.
We can't help noticing that the ADzero does not appear to be turned on in any of the product shots, so it may be that thus far no working prototype has been made. At present the identity of the ADzero's backers remains elusive, and with no fixed specification, a pre-2013 release may prove an optimistic target. But then, what's wrong with a bit of optimism?
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