Over the years we’ve seen various manufacturers think outside the proverbial box with smartphone design, yielding banana phones, phones with e-ink displays on the rear, phones with two rear camera lenses…
When Alcatel was throwing around ideas for the One Touch Idol 3, one bright spark mused: wouldn’t it be cool if you didn’t have to worry about which way up your phone was?
The result is the “orientation-free” Alcatel One Touch Idol 3, a phone with a microphone and speaker at each end of the device.
Alcatel is quite proud of the One Touch Idol 3's “symmetrical” design, though obviously rigid features like the power button, volume buttons, camera lens and logo mean there is a discernible “right way up” - particularly when taking photographs.
But the idea is that when taking a call, you don’t have to worry about which way up your phone is. Just stick it to your face and start talking. Alcatel suggests that the process of figuring out the “right way up” while hurrying to take a call might cause you to drop your phone, too.
The Alcatel One Touch Idol 3 comes in two flavours, specifically 4.7in and 5.5in, exactly the same as the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus.
The larger model has a 1080p display, 8-core 64-bit Qualcomm Snapdragon 615 processor, 16GB expandable storage, 13MP rear camera, 8MP front camera, Lollipop Android 5.0, and 2,910mAh battery.
The smaller Alcatel One Touch Idol 3 settles for a 720p display, 64-bit Qualcomm Snapdragon 410 processor, 5MP front camera, and 2,000mAh battery.
As for Alcatel One Touch Idol 3 pricing, it comes in at €249 (£181) and €199 (£145) for the 5.5in and 4.7in models respectively.
The Alcatel One Touch Idol 3 release date, finally, is set for April in Europe, May in Latin America, and June in the US.