Kodak has entered the smartphone market with an Android handset focused on prosumer photographers.
The Kodak Ektra is modelled on the iconic 1941 chrome and leatherette 35mm camera of the same name. It has a 21MP rear camera with f/2.0 aperture on the back and a 13MP front camera for selfies.
The handset runs Android Marshmallow, although with no immediate commitment to a Nougat upgrade. Google Snapseed comes preloaded for photo editing, and there’s a full-on old school printing service to get your snaps back on paper where they belong.
The Ektra has a deca-core MediaTek Helio X20 processor running at 2.3GHz. Compare that with the Galaxy S7 Edge, which has only eight cores, half of which run at a lower speed, and it’s a beast.
Surprising, then, that it’s bolstered by just 3GB of RAM. We’ll be fascinated to see the benchmarks that combination produces, and we'll do that when we go hands-on soon.
The 32GB of storage is augmented by a microSD slot, which is good news as there’s 4K video recording, along with a retro Super8 mode.
Battery life will be interesting as 3,000mAh isn’t exactly huge for a smartphone, but the Qualcomm-style fast charging will help.
But what really sets out the Ektra's stall is the addition of the familiar 'wheel' to the camera app for switching between shooting modes, along with a proper physical shutter button.
Commenting on the launch, Jeff Clarke, Kodak chief executive, said: "Kodak has a rich history in imaging technology, and the launch of the Kodak smartphone today demonstrates our commitment to bringing the latest advances in photography to consumers.
"The original Kodak Ektra camera was launched in 1941 and in its latest reincarnation, opens up a world of creative opportunities to all who care about photography."
It’s a fascinating hybrid that may appeal to a new untapped market. There have been attempts at photography-centric cameras before, but this looks like the first time that the combination of the brand and the tech have matched the timing.
It'll be available direct from Kodak before the end of the year for £449.
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