It seems like Panasonic decided to step things up and make the Panasonic Eluga available in Japan a month ahead of the scheduled European launch. There are different theories as to why Panasonic decided to reschedule (seemingly out of the blue) the launch of the Eluga, but it’s certain that the phone will hit the stores in Japan on March 26 via NTT Docomo.
For Panasonic, the assumed objective of the Eluga is to make a difference on the unique Japanese phone market, by moving away from the look and feel of most competing phones. As a company representative said, Panasonic is “trying to offer a great experience free from the bells and whistles found on phones for the Japanese market”. At the same time, the sleek Eluga is Panasonic’s bid to make a comeback to the Western markets, which, for many years, were largely ignored by the Japanese tech giants (with the notable exception of Sony).
The Eluga was supposed to come to Europe in March, but the launch date has been postponed, according to the official site of Panasonic Europe. For unknown reasons, the European public will have to wait a couple of weeks longer to try out this great-looking, yet sturdy phone.
We have already seen the Eluga at MWC, so we have a pretty good idea about its specs and features. The screen will be a 4.3-incher running at 960×540 resolution, while the Panasonic Eluga Power (the big brother) is expected to have a beautiful 5-inch display. The two devices are expected to offer a 8MP camera. The most unique trait of the Eluga is its slim profile of just 7.8mm. We haven’t got the chance to evaluate the smartphone hands-on, but we’ve heard from those who have handled it that the Eluga feels even slimmer than it looks, thanks to it smooth curves.
On the down side, such a slim phone cannot offer too much in terms of battery life – just an 1,150 mAh battery, which Panasonic claims to provide 300h of functioning in standby. To sweeten the pill, Panasonic included a special feature, the “super charging” mode, which is supposed to dramatically decrease the amount of time need for the Eluga’s battery to fully charge.
The Eluga will come with Android Gingerbread (v2.3.5), however, an update to Ice Cream Sandwich will be available this summer, promises Panasonic. The weight of the phone will be only 103 grams, which is very impressive, considering the generous size and the fact that the device is water and dust-resistant.
How will the Eluga perform once it’s finally officially released? We will find out very soon!
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I think the Eluga has decent enough specs, but the real appeal is its beautiful design, and the fact that it isn’t all that expensive. The waterproof and dustproof coating will come in handy too. Well, they will if you’re me anyway. A little clumsy. You can pre-order the Eluga from MobiCity for just £350 if you live in the UK. That’s the cheapest I’ve seen it anyway…