Last this past summer, a surprise announcement came out of seemingly nowhere: Apple’s former CEO, John Sculley, was not only back in the business, but touting a new line of wallet-friendly smartphones called the Obi Worldphone. Two models were announced, the SF1 and the SF1.5, with the former having more premium specs than the latter. It seems the time is near for release, as website Gadgets 360 has exclusively begun registration, with Obi’s official website directing to said page as well.
As can be seen in the above picture, two models are available for purchase: a 16GB / 2GB RAM configuration for 11,999 rupees, and a 32GB / 3GB of RAM configuration for 13,999 rupees. This converts to roughly $179 and $209 respectively. The phones sport some rather surprisingly solid specs for devices this demure in dollars:
A 5-inch Full HD In-cell IPS display, a 1.5 GHz 64-bit Octa-core Snapdragon 615 SoC, ; Adreno 405 GPU, LTE, a 3000 mAh battery, Quick Charge 1.0, Dual SIM support, a 13-megapixel rear camera and 5-megapixel front camera (both with LED flash), microSD card support, Dolby Audio and noise cancellation.
Things get even more interesting when looking at the individual specs themselves: the display is fully laminated and made by JDI, the screen is Gorilla Glass 4, and the rear camera is a Sony Exmor IMX214 Sensor with f/2.0 aperture.
The phone is also running on Android 5.0.2 Lollipop. Given that Marshmallow is soon to be approaching its second month of availability, some potential purchasers may be quite anxious to hear about what plans – if any – there are to provide OS updates to this device in the future.
Suffice to say, the product definitely goes head-to-head with chief rivals like the Motorola Moto G (2015) and the OnePlus X, and design-wise many have said the Obi Worldphone looks inspired by some of Nokia’s Lumia devices.
Currently, registration simply requires submitting your e-mail address on the Gadgets 360 mini site. The official Obi site proclaims that “more [countries] are on the way” thus we can assume that availability is going to be expanding soon. The device is said to be launching in Vietnam, Indonesia, Thailand, the UAE, Saudi Arabia, Kenya, Nigeria, Tanzania, South Africa, Pakistan, Turkey and India. There are currently no details about the lower-speced SF 1.5.
What do you think? Is the Worldphone worth picking up, or are there better fish in the sea? At the very least, it will be quite interesting to watch how the proposition fares given the presence of Mr. Sculley.