NTT Docomo Unveils 'World's Slimmest, Lightest' Smartphone

Feb 25, 2011
Shinya Saeki, Nikkei Electronics
NTT Docomo President Ryuji Yamada (center)
NTT Docomo President Ryuji Yamada (center)
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The "Medias" (front side)
The "Medias" (front side)
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Its thinnest part is only 7.7mm thick.
Its thinnest part is only 7.7mm thick.
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The pink model of the "Xperia arc" (front side)
The pink model of the "Xperia arc" (front side)
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The pink model of the Xperia arc (back side)
The pink model of the Xperia arc (back side)
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The "Optimus Pad" (front side)
The "Optimus Pad" (front side)
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The Optimus Pad (back side)
The Optimus Pad (back side)
[ If it clicks, the expanded picture will open ]

NTT Docomo Inc announced three new models of the "Docomo Smartphone" Feb 24, 2011.

They are NEC Casio Mobile Communications' "Medias N-04C," Sony Ericsson Mobile Communications' "Xperia arc SO-01C" and LG Electronics' "Optimus Pad L-06C." All of the three smartphones are based on Google Inc's Android software platform. NTT Docomo will start releasing them in or after March 2011.

7.7mm-thick smartphone

The thinnest part of the Medias is only 7.7mm thick, and its weight is as light as 105g.

"This is the world's slimmest and lightest smartphone," NTT Docomo President Ryuji Yamada said.

It features functions such as mobile wallet, 1seg digital TV reception and infrared communication.

"We cannot disclose the details (about the slimness), but we applied all the technologies developed for the 'N' series, which is known for its slim body," an NTT Docomo staffer said. "It has enough durability because an aluminum alloy frame and a resin chassis were combined. We embedded heavy parts in the lower part of the chassis in consideration of the balance of the phone in hand."

The Medias comes with an LCD panel whose size is about 4.0 inches and pixel count is 480 x 854. On the surface of the panel, Corning Inc's tempered glass called "Gorilla Glass" was used.

The smartphone is equipped with a CMOS sensor with a pixel count of about 5.1 million. The capacity of its lithium-ion (Li-ion) rechargeable battery is 1,230mAh. Though it currently uses Android 2.2, NTT Docomo plans to upgrade it to version 2.3 in the summer of 2011, Yamada said.

As one of the smartphones to be launched in the summer of 2011, NTT Docomo is considering releasing a waterproof version of the Medias, Yamada said. But the thinnest part of the waterproof version will be slightly thicker than 7.7mm, an NTT Docomo staffer said.

Pink model for female users

The Xperia arc is a smartphone that Sony Ericsson announced at 2011 International CES, which took place in January 2011 (See related article). It supports the HSPA service that NTT Docomo will start in or after June 2011 with a maximum download speed of 14Mbps. To attract female users, a pink model will be offered in addition to blue and silver models, Yamada said.

The thinnest part of the Xperia arc is 8.7mm thick, and it weighs about 118g. It is equipped with an LCD panel with a size of about 4.2 inches and a pixel count of 480 x 854 as well as a back-illuminated CMOS sensor with a pixel count of about 8.1 million.

The capacity of the smartphone's Li-ion rechargeable battery is 1,500mAh. It is based on Android 2.3. As a model for the summer of 2011, NTT Docomo is planning to launch a new model of the Xperia that supports functions such as mobile wallet, Yamada said.

Tablet PC has no audio communication function

The Optimus Pad L-06C is a tablet PC having an 8.9-inch LCD panel with a pixel count of 1,280 x 768. It was announced at Mobile World Congress 2011, which took place in February 2011. It is not possible to make a phone call with the tablet PC.

Two CMOS image sensors with a pixel count of about 5.1 million are embedded on the back of the L-06C's chassis so that 3D video can be shot. The capacity of its Li-ion rechargeable battery is 6,400mAh. The version of Android is 3.0.