It’s been nearly four years since the YotaPhone 2, once described as Russia’s answer to the iPhone, was released. However, now we can tell you that the YotaPhone 3 is on the way with an expected fall release. Here’s what you need to know about this handset.
If you were asked to name countries that make smartphones, we’d guess that Russia would be pretty far down the list. However, YotaPhone was indeed founded in Russia, with its first handset launching in 2013. With it came a decent display (for the time) and a power-efficient E-ink rear display. This innovative rear panel showed notifications and enabled the reading of e-books. While the handset was well-received, it did have some problems, such as poor build quality and unreliable software.
As such, the YotaPhone 2 was introduced in 2014, which set some of the previous issues right, but its downfall was its enormous price tag at US$860, which just scared people away to less expensive devices. Fortunately, if you are one of the few who has been waiting for the YotaPhone 3, there’s good news. This past weekend saw the Harbin China-Russia Technology Expo. At the Boali Yota event, the company formed as a joint venture by investor Baoli and Coolpad teased the YotaPhone 3.
If you were unaware of this partnership that has taken manufacturing of the YotaPhone to China, it was put together to keep the company afloat. The main reason that there’s been a four-year wait for the phone is finances. The deal was struck to keep the company from folding and to enable future handsets to be made. It did see the YotaPhone 3’s release date put back nearly one year, but that has resulted in a firm release quarter, if not an actual date being confirmed.
Both variants of the handset will be sold in Russia and China, with preorders expected to begin in early September. Yet again, we do not have firm dates; however, it’s thought this will happen simultaneously in both markets.
What’s almost certain is that you can expect the handset to be released in September. As soon as we know a specific date, we will inform you.
As the existence of the YotaPhone 3 is now official, most people will now be wondering how much it will cost. According to those who attended the trade show over the weekend, a price was not mentioned. However, it has been reported to be cheaper than its predecessor, with its two variants, 64GB and 128GB, being priced at US$350, and US$450, respectively.
Specs and features
If the prices above are correct, it begs the question of why there is such a large price difference between this year’s and 2014’s models. The answer to this question can be found in the chipset that’s being used. Apparently, Boali Yota has decided to keep the handset cost-effective, which means you won’t see the Snapdragon 835. Instead, it’s thought a mid-range SoC like the Snapdragon 625 will be incorporated, meaning that the YotaPhone 3 probably isn’t a flagship device, or at least not one that could take on the Galaxy S8, iPhone 7 or others.
As far as RAM is concerned, there will be a decent amount, as 4GB is expected, as is a fingerprint sensor. However, if you’re expecting a state-of-the-art display, that’s not what you will get. Instead, there’s said to be a 1080p AMOLED display with a size of 5 inches, and there are no further details.
The E-ink rear display has grown in size to 5.2 inches, but overall, it’s not really an improvement. Lastly, there’s a 13-megapixel front camera and a 3,200mAh battery, which should give a decent amount of usage.