Technology

Meet Zanco Tiny t1, The World’s Smallest Phone With 0.49-inch Display

Zanco, a UK-based phone company, has released the world’s smallest phone – the Zanco tiny t1 – which is merely the size of a thumb. The retro-looking phone measures 46.7 x 21 x 12mm (1.8 x 0.8 x 0.47 in.) and weighs around 13g or just the weight of two and a half nickels.

smallest phone
Image Source: kickstarter.com (screenshot)

Zanco tiny t1 – world’s smallest phone

With the world going for bigger phones, there is hardly any mainstream smartphone company which has launched – or has plans to launch – a smaller phone. However, Zanco – with this smallest phone – wants to create a unique category of cute yet fully-functional phones, and the Zanco tiny t1 is the first step towards that.

The Zanco tiny t1 has a half-inch screen, which supports a resolution of 64 x 32 pixels. The phone has limited features such as calling and messaging, and supports the 2G network. The handset supports nano-sim cards, and is charged via a micro USB. The phone comes with an alpha numeric keypad along with a D-pad for navigation. Further, its phonebook has the capacity of storing 300 contacts. It can show 50 most recent calls and 50 most recent messages – a remarkable achievement given the size of the phone.

On the hardware front, the phone comes with a MediaTek MTK6261D processor with 32MB RAM and 32MB internal storage. These specifications make this phone capable enough of running all the basic functions. As expected, the phone does not include any camera, and its keyboard is backlit. Powered by a 200 mAh battery, the company claims up to three days of standby time and 180 minutes of talk time. Surprisingly, the device supports 13 languages.

Drawbacks of smaller phones

Zanco has announced that initially they would offer only 1000 units of the device. Those interested can get the Zanco tiny t1 by pledging £30 or more on its Kickstarter. Sure, it is a cute-looking phone, and some might consider buying it as an alternate phone, however, those pledging the money should understand the risks of a crowdfunded project.

In addition, the Zanco tiny t1 could be plagued with multiple limitations. Firstly, the phone runs on the outdated 2G network, which is being phased out in countries like the U.S., Canada, Australia and parts of Europe and Asia. Further, the clarity of voice could be another issue because the microphone would be nowhere near the mouth of the user. Also, the keypad and screen are too small to offer any comfort while texting, notes New Atlas.

Also, smaller phones like the Zanco tiny t1 could even be banned if the argument of UK Justice Secretary David Lidington is accepted. According to Lidington, these phones are small enough to be easily smuggled into prisons.

“It’s pretty clear to me that these miniature phones are being manufactured and sold with the purpose of being smuggled into prisons,” he said, according to Engadget.

Lidington has asked online retailers such as eBay and Amazon to ban sales of the small phones on their platforms. Many of these phones come with the slogan, “Beat the Boss” –  a reference to the Body Orifice Security Scanners (BOSS) deployed by prison officers to scan out the knives, and various other metallic objects.