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The Astro Slide! (sliding keyboard phone competition from planetcom)


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On 4/9/2020 at 10:13 AM, EskeRahn said:

I'm very pleased too. Note that going for a non-curved screen would mean

- Higher price

Can you elaborate on that? My suspicion is that this screen was chosen because it's an off-the-shelf model that the factory could easily produce, and thus cheaper. But if we'd go for a phone a bit smaller (5") like the LG q6, how would that make the price higher?

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MediaTek doesn't release any open source code. So custom roms like Lineage etc. are very difficult to make. So you are stuck with stock. And further, given that it's all closed source Chinese code, I'

>MediaTek fucking DROPPED No possibility to boot Maemo-Leste, no buy.

On the other hand, I'm happy someone finally made a keyboard slider for someone with big hands and thumbs like me.  I hated my work issued BBs-- I could never type on them, I also remember rejecting t

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6 hours ago, michael.bosscha said:

Can you elaborate on that? My suspicion is that this screen was chosen because it's an off-the-shelf model that the factory could easily produce, and thus cheaper. But if we'd go for a phone a bit smaller (5") like the LG q6, how would that make the price higher?

Well as you said off the shelf product. At some point they told us that it is simply harder to find displays that are not curved at the same price. I have not done any research to check if it is right, but I assume so.

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On 4/9/2020 at 9:13 AM, EskeRahn said:

I'm very pleased too. Note that going for a non-curved screen would mean two thing

  1. Higher price

ūüėģI didn't expect that

On 4/9/2020 at 9:13 AM, EskeRahn said:
  1. Lesser Screen-to body-ratio. (larger body or lesser screen)

I don't mind that much...

On 4/9/2020 at 9:13 AM, EskeRahn said:

So personally I think it would be MUCH better to at a deep hardware-driver level at the users choice offer the display to the system as

  • Full, 2160x1080 (18:9)
  • slightly reduced keyboard side only, 2160x1035 (18.8 : 9)
  • slightly reduced¬† both sides, 2160x990 (19.6 : 9)
  • substantially reduced¬† keyboard side only, 2160x990 (19.6 : 9)
  • substantially reduced¬† keyboard side, slightly on opposite, 2160x945 (10.6 : 9)
  • substantially reduced both sides, 2160x900 (21.6 : 9)

A VARIANT of the above could be that it concerned touch only, not the displayed area. (Similar to the Edge Null hack, but implemented in the system) This generally works, but can course troubles interacting with some edge elements, depending on each app.

I like the reduced screen option as an alternative. Both sides screen reduction would be my usual favorite.
Even way better of both worlds if I could trigger any of those automatically!

I wonder if we can get root access (with proper locks) in the signed and locked phone too....

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On 4/8/2020 at 4:51 PM, Slion said:

@Luke I understand your frustration concerning the delays but surely you realize our world is facing its toughest challenge since WW2. Most planes world wide are grounded people are dying, grasping for air by the thousand. I'm sure you will find in yourself the strength to wait a few more months for your shiny electronic gadget. In the worst case scenario you loose a few hundred dollars surely that's not such a big deal for someone of your stature.

TBH at this stage we could count ourselves lucky if Fxtec survives COVID.

If they ever manage to really restart production I will definitely buy another unit. It is that good. For a startup first product that is.

Slion,

You are right. I concur. Let's support this team as they take on the world during an unprecedented world crisis.

Luke

 

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  • 7 months later...

Meanwhile Astro slides IGG campaign is still¬†running¬†and they are still prototyping ūü§£¬†They raised more cash than Pro1 X campaign but they have been running for much longer, like 6 months longer. I'm pretty sure if we were projecting growth¬†the FxTec campaign would be way ahead of the Astro.

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49 minutes ago, Slion said:

Meanwhile Astro slides IGG campaign is still¬†running¬†and they are still prototyping ūü§£¬†They raised more cash than Pro1 X campaign but they have been running for much longer, like 6 months longer. I'm pretty sure if we were projecting growth¬†the FxTec campaign would be way ahead of the Astro.

Somehow I'm not surprised that they a mere seven months after the campaign ended are still prototyping....

The idea of sliding the top all the way and then tilting is interesting, to allow for a larger keyboard area. But to be practically useful they will have to find a clever way to also synchronise the two 'rails'. Not to mention how to make such a complex mechanism at the least somehow resistant to pocket lint.

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I'd like that, too. I loved the tiny Xperia X1, for example. But then again, I've become used to the large screen, and wouldn't want to miss much of that, either. Without someone finding out how to distort space-time in a controlled way, I fear I can't have both!

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3 hours ago, Rob. S. said:

I'd like that, too. I loved the tiny Xperia X1, for example. But then again, I've become used to the large screen, and wouldn't want to miss much of that, either. Without someone finding out how to distort space-time in a controlled way, I fear I can't have both!

At least a little smaller. I see no reason why you need an enormous screen when you have a dedicated keyboard as well not taking up any screen space. I always thought the pro1 should've had a 5.8 inch or even 5.5 screen to make it easier to handle

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4 hours ago, npatel1050 said:

I thought the pro1 was big and this is even bigger. Do people not care about using their phones with one hand anymore? Wish they would work on trimming these phones down and making them more compact.

This is a really hard dilemma. We want the keyboards and keys large, and also the display large, but our hands and pockets are not growing at the same pace....

The only possible solution I see is at totally rethought set of design-guidelines for the OS, so that apps and OS have a larger display area than interactive area. That is the only way we are getting one hand operable devices back, while also having large screens and keyboards.

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16 hours ago, EskeRahn said:

Somehow I'm not surprised that they a mere seven months after the campaign ended are still prototyping....

The idea of sliding the top all the way and then tilting is interesting, to allow for a larger keyboard area. But to be practically useful they will have to find a clever way to also synchronise the two 'rails'. Not to mention how to make such a complex mechanism at the least somehow resistant to pocket lint.

Well the Video in the newest astro slide update does not show anything promising in to keep the two 'rails' in sync. There may be more to come though

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17 hours ago, Slion said:

Meanwhile Astro slides IGG campaign is still¬†running¬†and they are still prototyping ūü§£¬†They raised more cash than Pro1 X campaign but they have been running for much longer, like 6 months longer. I'm pretty sure if we were projecting growth¬†the FxTec campaign would be way ahead of the Astro.

They got most of there backers in May though and that 2535 current backers value hasn't changed in ages.

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I was just thinking its actually bad for business leaving a campaign running long after you have secured funding in this particular case.  As there really is a finite amount of people interested in this type of hardware so you will be lowering your profits. 

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2 hours ago, Doktor Oswaldo said:

Well the Video in the newest astro slide update does not show anything promising in to keep the two 'rails' in sync. There may be more to come though

I just saw their video again where he so struggles to both open and close it 1:05 to 1:20 in.
Imagine how the Astro will be in real life, if this is the least bad the inventor himself can make the mechanism work for presentation.... that they have not replaced the footage with something more convincing over the last half a year sort of says a lot IMHO.

For comparison look at the post in here where Elysia shows how super easy it is for her to open&close the Pro1, despite it certainly isn't super easy for all first time users.

One could claim that Pro1 is being over-sold and the Astro under-sold, in this aspect, but frankly I doubt that to be the case... 

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1 hour ago, EskeRahn said:

I just saw their video again where he so struggles to both open and close it 1:05 to 1:20 in.
Imagine how the Astro will be in real life, if this is the least bad the inventor himself can make the mechanism work for presentation.... that they have not replaced the footage with something more convincing over the last half a year sort of says a lot IMHO.

For comparison look at the post in here where Elysia shows how super easy it is for her to open&close the Pro1, despite it certainly isn't super easy for all first time users.

One could claim that Pro1 is being over-sold and the Astro under-sold, in this aspect, but frankly I doubt that to be the case... 

 

Well I was talking about the latest update:

https://player.vimeo.com/video/491140062

You can see, that it wedges pretty fast, and an alternation between force on the left and right side is needed to open it in multiple pushes. This could work way more stable, once the rest of the phone is done, but I don't see anything suggesting a mechanism to prevent that.

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46 minutes ago, Doktor Oswaldo said:

You can see, that it wedges pretty fast, and an alternation between force on the left and right side is needed to open it in multiple pushes. This could work way more stable, once the rest of the phone is done, but I don't see anything suggesting a mechanism to prevent that.

Indeed, it is very obvious how out of sync the two sides easily gets with uneven pressure

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I also think that the Pro1's opening mechanism is much more robust.

However, let's be nice among keyboard-lovers and recognise that the AstroSlide will have the much better keyboard -- probably more or less identical to the one its precursors had. From all that I have read, it seems to be as close as you can get to a "real" 10-finger keyboard in a PDA.

In all honesty, I find that the Pro1 is some "in-between" solution that seeks to be compatible with, both, thumb-typing as well as multi-finger operation (when the phone sits on a table). As a result, it fulfils both roles pretty badly (for me at least): I could thumb-type much faster on my (smaller) N900, and I am not really able to use more than two fingers in "desktop-mode" either.

I do not like the fact that the AstroSlide will be even larger than the Pro1 and therefore will not get one. However, unlike its predecessors, it will actually be useful as a phone and hence have the potential to be a true competitor for the Pro1, especially as it is much more powerful.

But make no mistake: the true adversaries out there are not the few other keyboard phones. It's the billions of pure touch devices that have established the idea that smartphones are mere entertainment appliances that do not need to support real computing tasks. In that sense, I wish the Astro all the luck it will need.

Edited by claude0001
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10 minutes ago, claude0001 said:

In all honesty, I find that the Pro1 is some "in-between" solution that seeks to be compatible with, both, thumb-typing as well as multi-finger operation (when the phone sits on a table). As a result, it fulfils both roles pretty badly (for me at least): I could thumb-type much faster on my (smaller) N900, and I am not really able to use more than two fingers in "desktop-mode" either.

I couldn't agree more, I want a mini version of the Pro1 or the Cosmo (or both).

I often see people bashing vertical keyboards on this forum but with some training you can type reaaaaally fast on those thanks to the short distance your thumbs travel and when necessary you can even type one handed. Off course horizontal keyboards win on the special keys...

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On the other hand, I'm happy someone finally made a keyboard slider for someone with big hands and thumbs like me.  I hated my work issued BBs-- I could never type on them, I also remember rejecting the original Droid way back when because the keyboard was just too tiny.  I do hope FxTec thrives enough to get another model for you folks who want a smaller keyboard, but this is the most comfortable phone keyboard I have ever used.

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2 hours ago, Hook said:

On the other hand, I'm happy someone finally made a keyboard slider for someone with big hands and thumbs like me.

Oh indeed let us have variety, the more the merrier. There are no single model that are ideal for everyone.

Just as those seldom using a keyboard should keep on using their slabs.

Different users different usage patterns and needs. ūüôā

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18 hours ago, flx said:

couldn't agree more, I want a mini version of the Pro1 or the Cosmo (or both).

I can sell you my Sony Ericsson Vivaz Pro

Hell even Nokia E7 is tiny next to Pro1. I'm happy with the Pro1 large screen which is standard on today's smartphones really.

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