The Binatone Brick brings back 1980s mobile style

binatone-brick

If you’ve a hankering for the mobile devices of the 80s and 90s then Binatone’s new Brick handset is going to be right up your street — the chunky, feature-limited device can work as a mobile or a Bluetooth handset and looks more like an aging movie prop than a 2013-ready piece of hardware.

The phone is limited to use on 2G networks and has a 1.8″ TFT display running at an old-school 128 x 160 pixels. You won’t be able to access the Apple App Store or Google Play on this thing, but it does come with a clock, alarm, calendar and calculator built in. There’s one game included, which is Snake, of course.

Why would you want one, other than as a retro fashion accessory? Well if you opt for the Power Edition of the phone with a 2,000 mAh battery, it should be good enough for a jaw-dropping 3 months’ worth of standby time. That gives you enough of a window to go around the world and come back without worrying that your phone will be dead upon your return. Even if you’re gabbing non-stop, the battery should last for 28 straight hours, which really puts today’s power-hungry mobile phones in the shade.

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You can use the Binatone Brick to make calls, send texts and picture messages and store up to 300 contacts. It can even play MP3s. However, we’re not sure you’d want to be seen out and about using it — perhaps it makes more sense as a mobile you can use wirelessly around the home that only needs charging four times a year. You can use the Micro USB port if you want to plug in a headset and it also has hands-free speakerphone capabilities. What’s more, that Micro USB port can be used to charge another mobile phone.

Those of you with your wallets out at the ready will have to part with £80 to get the 2,000 mAh Power Edition of the Brick. The 1,000 mAh edition (with half the standby and talk time) comes in at £50. If you really want to go the whole hog, leather and silicon cases are available from Binatone too. The Brick goes on sale in the UK in October.

Binatone’s new ‘Speakeasy’ mobiles – Great phones for the grandparents in our lives

Despite the huge success of iPhones, mostly due to the multitude of multi-media capabilities they provide, there are some who dislike the ‘fiddliness’ of modern mobiles, such as iPhones, and have a disinclination towards all the ‘unnecessary’ features many modern mobiles possess.  In-light of this surprisingly rampant abhorrence to the seemingly endless technical capabilities of modern multi-faceted mobiles, Binatone, a leading consumer electronics company, has expanded its range of Big Button Mobile Phones – a refreshingly simple, stylish alternative mobile.

Binatone

Following on from the huge success of the Big Button range which was launched in 2010, Binatone has introduced the Speakeasy 300 GSM phone, which costs £59.99 and its ‘top of the range’ Speakeasy 600, priced at £79.99.

As the name suggests, the mobiles are designed to make calling and texting easier than ever. Large, sturdy keys means accidentally pressing the wrong number when you make a call is virtually impossible, whilst large, easy to read displays make reading texts a whole lot simpler. And for those a little hard of hearing, an amplified sound and speakerphone creates a clearer sound and improves call quality. Accidental calling may burden us no more, as the Speakeasy 600 has a built-in slider screen, resourcefully concealing the keyboard, ensuring misfortunes like ‘accidentally calling the ex’ are avoided – Yes we’ve all been there!

Although for those yearning simplified phone usage whilst maintaining some sophisticated features, the Speakeasy 600 is Bluetooth enabled, meaning users can safely use their phone handsfree when driving a Bluetooth enabled car. Binatone’s ‘top of the range’ model also features an in-built camera, meaning there’s never an excuse for not capturing those precious moments on camera.

The LG verdict? Whilst the Speakeasy 600 may be mildly in-keeping with the present decade, the Speakeasy 300 GMS may make a good present for our grandparents, notorious for their inability to send text messages and even answer their phones!

Binatone iHomePhone: Android comes home for the first time

After the excitement of the launch of Windows Phone 7 and the iPad this year, there’s another development about to hit the technology market – and this time there’s nothing mobile about it.

Binatone has launched the first Android-powered home phone – the iHomePhone. The device will use the landline allow consumers to surf the net (through an existing broadband connection), chat to friends, listen to music and even download apps – all on a home phone.

ihomephone

The aim of the phone, which also boasts Wi-Fi functionality, is to reduce the number of gadgets people need to use at home. The DECT cordless digital phone has a full colour touch-screen, Android 1.6 (shame it’s not a later version) and internet browser, so can be used to watch videos, view photos and even read eBooks. Stereo speakers are built in to the docking station and it also offers access to internet radio.

The iHomePhone offers eight hours of talk time and eight hours on standby, as well as handsfree speakerphone, digital answering machine and a contacts manager that can hold 300 contact numbers. It has a clock, alarm and calendar, and an ‘email client function’.

Prices start at £99.99 for one handset, which looks rather like a smartphone, and has a stylish round docking station. The device is available from November.

Luke Ireland, Managing Director of Binatone said: “ With the iHomePhone, we’ve taken a smartphone, MP3 player, internet radio, netbook, tablet, cordless home phone and an e-reader and packaged them up into one neat, modern and sophisticated device, available to consumers at an incredible price.

It remains to be seen whether the iHomePhone offers decent performance on each of its functions, and whether people really want to pay out for a home phone with these functions, if they already own MP3 players, computers, mobiles and ereaders. However, for homes that don’t boast any of these gadgets – for the elderly perhaps – this could be a one-size-fits-all way to gain access to the kind of technology that many of us already own.

Oh – and let’s see if Apple’s lawyers sit back and say nothing about the name!

More at here.