by Jin S. Kim
There is not a single nice picture of Samsung‘s Alias 2. But here you can see the keypad in a couple of portrait modes. You can see several pictures of the ugly Alias 2 on PhoneArena (link at the bottom) if you really want to.
E Ink Samsung’s Alias 2 is a smartphone with a smart keyboard. The QWERTY keyboard sports E Ink technology. E Ink is used in Amazon’s super-popular Kindle as well as almost all other ebook readers. What E Ink technology allows the Alias 2 do is shape shift–well, not really, but it sounded good. The QWERTY keyboard layout changes depending on whether you’re texting or just using the Alias 2 like a normal phone. You see, the Alias 2’s LCD can be flipped sideways or flipped up thanks to the dual-hinge design: sideways for texting and up for regular phoning. Sounds cool to me. But I wonder if the buttons are programmable and what they feel like: the buttons look like they are part physical button part display.
Ugly The overall design of the Alias 2 is ho-hum. The external display looks positively ugly–what’s with that slim green color? The 2.6″ TFT LCD sporting a 320 x 240 pixel format should look pretty good but it’s encased in a funky-looking design. Maybe the ugly look is required due to the dual-hinge–probably not. The Alias 2 is expected to hit Verizon stores on May 11.
Idea! Wouldn’t it be cool if someone came out with a full-blown E Ink keyboard?