We like the rounded corners and the “kawaii” feel to it
Balmuda, a Japanese company known for making appliances as well as pretty expensive toasters, has created (and not just taken from another company) their own smartphone called the Balmuda Phone. As seen from the image above, it’s uniquely designed. It’s also quite small, having a screen measurement of 4.9in., but still remained a punch hole. We can’t help but look at how cute it looks, like a typical anime girl.
The phone has a very curvy design reminiscent of phones released back in 2016-17. The reason for the small compact screen is that, according to CEO Gen Tarao, every phone is so large now that a typical smartphone is hard to use with a single hand. And that’s how the Balmuda Phone was born.
It has a 4.9in. FHD+ IPS LCD with a 16:9 aspect ratio and a pretty large punch-hole cutout on the top right corner. Unlike typical phones with similar sizes that usually have a classic “bezelled” screen, this one managed to use a full “bezelless” screen with a punch hole. As a compact phone, measurement is everything. The phone is 12.3cm tall, 6.9cm wide, and 13.7cm at the thickest point. It’s pretty lightweight too (as expected for a compact phone) at 138g and has a curvy design. It uses plastic for the build, quite obvious from its back design. This screen size is comparable to the iPhone SE with a 4.7in. screen.
In terms of chipset, the phone is surprisingly capable. It uses the Qualcomm Snapdragon 765G chipset paired with 6GB RAM and 128GB internal storage. This is still similar to many usual midrangers released today.
In terms of camera, there’s a singular 48mp camera situated uniquely at the right portion of the phone at the back. The selfie camera sits at the punch hole cutout and has a resolution of 8mp. On the left of that camera is the fingerprint scanner. Because of how compact this phone is, the high placement of the fingerprint sensor is actually not too bad.
It has a pretty small battery for a phone released in 2021, let alone very late in the year. It has a capacity of 2500mAh that charges through USB-C or wirelessly through any Qi charger.
The phone doesn’t use stock Android. It uses Balmuda’s own skin based on Android 11, complete with its own calendar, notes, calculator, and camera software. In spite of its size, it has a lot of gesture-based toggles.
Currently only available in Japan, the phone sells for JPY 104,800 (~Php 46.2K). This price is crazy expensive for Filipino standards as phones with this price are normally flagship level. Then again, this is a phone sold mainly for Japanese users who wanted a compact phone without sacrificing camera quality or performance. Though, it had to sacrifice the battery because of how cramped the phone already is. Pre-orders start on 17th November while official retail sales start on 26th November.