| Motorola, the world’s second-largest cell phone vendor, Wednesday took the wraps off a slim slider phone, which it claims is the ultimate evolution of its hot seller RAZR. |
The 14.8-millimeter-thick model, codenamed Z to show its concept _ the final version of the ultra-thin phone series, was designed and developed in Korea.
As a result, the sleek model was first disclosed in Korea unlike its high-profile predecessor RAZR, a clamshell-type phone that hit the local shops last year only after a big success in the global arena.
"This is the thinnest among many slider phones available here but it by no means lacks applications compared to other handsets," Gill Hyun-chang, chief executive at Motorola Korea, said.
Indeed, the model is outfitted with a 2.2-inch screen, a mega-pixel digital camera and an MP3 player on top of highly customized user interfaces provided on a metal keypad.
Motorola plans to market the Z through SK Telecom, the country’s primary mobile carrier, this month with a price tag between 500,000 won and 600,000 won.
Despite the upbeat expectation of Motorola, some raise suspicions whether or not it will repeat the notable success of RAZR, for which demands once outstripped its supplies.
The first and foremost hitch they present is that the Z cannot savor the status of the pioneer because slim sliders are currently flooding the market.
By contrast, the 14.5-millimeter-thick RAZR was the first wafer-thin handset in the market when it debuted last June and its popularity prompted other domestic producers to roll out copycat products.
On a more negative note for the new item, observers point out the prospects of the Z is uncertain since it is somewhat bigger than competitors.
``My first impression was that the Z is fit for foreigners’ big hands, not for Korea’s smaller ones. Its size is almost similar to that of the RAZR. But, the latter is okay here since it is a clamshell-type phone but a slider is different,’’ a Seoul analyst said.
"It remains to be seen whether tech-savvy Koreans will snap up the new phone as they did for the RAZR,"he added.