Imaging company Kodak’s Ektra has declared the launch of the Kodak Ektra, a new Android smartphone specifically designed for photography lovers. The handset will launch in Europe for £449/€499 (around U.S. $547) this December with the chance of a release in the United States depending on market need.
Kodak enlisted Bullitt to manufacture the Ektra handset which is clad in glass,leather and metal materials. Bullitt is known for making the CAT S60 Android smartphone. The handset separates itself by having a curved grip at the bottom and a dedicated shutter button to make the handset look and work like a traditional camera. This makes the handset quite thick at 9.69 millimeters.
The circular camera lens on the back is huge, but it’s just housing a small 21-megapixel Sony IMX230 sensor. That is a bit of a disappointment considering that this is primarily aimed at photographers. It would have been more impressive if it had a 41-megapixel sensor like the ones located on the Nokia Lumia 1020, as pointed out by ArsTechnica. There’s also no help for interchangeable lenses which will be a bummer for a lot of photogs.
What the Kodak Ektra camera holds a f/2.0 lens, 6-axis optical image stabilization, phase detects autofocus with support for HDR and 4K video recording. Up front, it holds a 13-megapixel camera that has a f/2.2 lens.
On the software side, Kodak made an endeavor to bring in a lot of features for its own custom camera app. There’s a Scene Selection Dial that allows users to change photography modes. It looks like a digital version of mode dials observed on DSLR cameras. The camera app also has Snapseed unite into it, allowing users to add filters and perform edits right on the app itself.
In addition, the Extra will have a widget on its home screen with Kodak’s approved photography apps like VSCO, Prisma, and Adobe Lightroom. There’s one more ,Kodak’s Prints app which allows users to order physical prints of theirs photos.
As for the smartphone part of the Kodak Ektra, it comes including a 5-inch full HD display, MediaTek Helio X-20 processor, 3GB of RAM and 32GB of internal storage. The handset also appears with microSD card support for 128GB cards and a fast charging 3,000 mAh battery.
The handset works near-stock Android 6.0 Marshmallow experience. No word but if it will get Android 7.0 Nougat update, but Bullitt said that it would pass timely security updates from Google, according to Engadget.
The Ektra is Kodak’s second chance at capturing the smartphone market; the first holding the IM5 which was released back in 2014. The problem with this new handset is that there are many other smartphones in the market with pretty capable cameras and also affordable price tags. Perhaps Kodak is hoping to draw in the photography circle by offering an Android smartphone that looks and feels like a real camera.
Although Kodak will only launch the Ektra in Europe this December, a U.S. launch is planned but will depend on market need. The company is hoping for a U.S. launch for spring 2017, according to toFstoppers.