Kyocera has confirmed to Phone Scoop that a software update will be distributed to the Echo smartphone starting today. The device brings most features of Android 2.3 Gingerbread to the Echo. The update also includes a few other features: pinch-to-zoom support; an improved downloads app; an upgrade to the Swype 3.0 virtual keypad; and Eco mode. Contrary to published reports, the update does not include support for NFC nor Wi-Fi calling. The Echo is a dual-screened Android smartphone that is sold by Sprint. Users will be notified when their device is ready for the update, or may use the on-board system tools to check for the update directly.
Kyocera today launched the Kyocera Android Developer Program, which it hopes will entice developers to target its Android devices, such as the dual-display Echo. The program contains the tools developers need, such as a software developers kits, so that developers may create applications optimized for the Echo and its two displays. The Echo will ship with a number of applications already optimized for its two-screen experience, and will also run all the applications in the Android Market. This SDK is so developers can go the extra mile and take advantage of the additional screen real estate provided by the Echo. The Echo is launching April 17 for $199.
Sprint today announced that it will offer the Kyocera Echo dual-screened Android device for sale starting April 17 for the price of $199.99. It will be available on all Sprint retail channels on that date. Customers may also chose to reserve an Echo starting on March 26. The Echo has two displays that work in concert with one another or separately. It also has a 5 megapixel camera, Wi-Fi, mobile hotspot, and stereo Bluetooth.
Sprint and Kyocera today announced the Echo, a new Android 2.2 smartphone that has a unique, two-display design. The device has dual 3.5-inch displays that are attached to a pivoting hinge, allowing one display to be hidden behind the other or both displays placed next to one another. When together, the Echo offers a total screen size of 4.7 inches. The Echo runs in several modes of operation to take advantage of the screens' flexibility. In Single Screen Mode, the Echo operates like a normal Android smartphone. In Simul-Task Mode, the Echo can run two of the phone's seven main apps at the same time, one on each screen. In Optimized Mode, the Echo will use both displays for a single application, though some screen real estate will be spared for other functions. Last, Tablet Mode takes advantage of all the screen space for a single application spread across the entire 4.7-inch span. Kyocera and Sprint wrote an application called VueQue for the Echo, which lets users watch a YouTube video on one display, while browsing for and queueing up a second video in the other display. Other features include a 5 megapixel camera with autofocus, flash and 720p HD video capture; Wi-Fi, GPS, and Bluetooth 2.1 EDR; digital compass, accelerometer, proximity sensor, and light sensor; and a 1GHz processor, 1GB of on-board storage and expandable memory via microSD. The Echo can serve as a Wi-Fi hotspot for up to five other devices, though it is limited to 3G data speeds. It ships with two 1370mAh batteries, and a charger that can charge one battery while also charging the phone. Availability and price weren't provided.
Our hands-on impressions of the innovative new Kyocera Echo Android smartphone for Sprint. See what dual screens can do for you.
The Wall Street Journal today reports that Sprint intends to introduce a new Android-based smartphone from Kyocera that is equipped with dual 3.5-inch touch displays. The Journal, citing sources familiar with Sprint's plans, says the Echo has adjustable screens that can be placed side-by-side, and users will be able to drag content from one screen to the other. The Echo has a pivot hinge which will also allow one screen to be tucked underneath the other, giving it a more mainstream smartphone appearance. Neither Sprint nor Kyocera has confirmed these details, but Sprint has an event scheduled in NYC this evening. Phone Scoop will be reporting live from the event.
According to unnamed sources cited by BusinessWeek, Sprint plans to unveil a new Kyocera smartphone at an event planned for New York City on Monday, Feb. 7. The handset will run Google's Android platform, says BusinessWeek, and will be called the Echo.