THE PUBLIC HAS reached a collective opinion on phone notches - the little indent in the top of the screen that houses the selfie-camera - and they're not fans. Yet manufacturers have continued to plough away with them, assuming that if Apple can get away with it, it's probably fine. They're right, of course, but it remains an aesthetic travesty.
Sharp, a company you likely haven't thought of in a while, has a brave answer to this problem. Perhaps the public isn't keen on notches because there's not enough of them? The company is putting this optimistic hypothesis to the test with the Aquos R2 Compact, an upcoming smartphone that sports a notch at the top for the camera and the bottom for a fingerprint reader.
If you're thinking that's to make everything symmetrical and more pleasing to the human eye, you're in for disappointment followed by bafflement. While the upper notch is a small, round pigeonhole, the notch at the bottom is a slightly rounded rectangle, wide enough to support a thumb.
Otherwise, it's a pretty decent-sounding handset. Like every other expensive Android device this year, it sports a Snapdragon 845 processor, and it's backed by 4GB RAM, a 1080p screen and a 22.6-megapixel f/1.9 rear camera. It's only 5.2in, so as current smartphones go, it's on the dinky side (how times change: the original Galaxy Note was only 5.3in, back in 2011), which might go some way to compensating for its weedy-looking 2,500mAh battery.
When can you buy one? Well, you probably can't unless you're willing to fly to Japan, where it will be on sale from mid-January. The rest of the world is rarely treated to Sharp smartphones, but that does hopefully mean this dual-notch madness will be safely contained to the Pacific. µ
It's on the naughty Liszt
Three models will debut in September
That's the irony klaxon going off again
This is sucky-sucky for five dollar