REAL PHONE MAGIC
AFTER FINALLY getting our hands on the Motofone – Motorola’s flagship product for targeting the emerging market – it’s clear that the company has produced a marvel of modern engineering. Instead of just cutting features from an existing design, Motorola has produced a cellphone that offers basic functionality in a cost-effective but still cutting-edge design. You won’t find a camera or a video player – or even a colour screen – on the Motofone. In fact, the menu has only six options: send a message, read messages, call history, change ringtone, set alarm and change time.
I can already hear the cries of joy from those who bemoan the proliferation of functions on modern cellphones and long for those days when all you had was SMS and voice calling. If all you want is a phone, then your day has come.
The one area that sets the Motofone apart from the pack is its screen. Instead of an LCD display it uses a reasonably recent innovation called electronic paper for its display. It’s massively more power efficient and enables the cellphone to run for longer in environments where people may not have regular access to electricity. Combined with clear voice prompts in both English and French, it’s for all levels of users.
The best part of the Motofone is its price. With a recommended retail price of between R250 and R300 and a slim profile, it would be hard to justify any other cellphone if all you want is to talk and send SMSs.