NTT DoCoMo, Japan’s number one wireless service provider, has made it a habit of unveiling an entire herd of smartphones before the summer season, most of which get to either be exclusive to the Asian carrier or make their global debut around those parts.
Today is the big day for DoCoMo’s latest summer smartphone line-up, though the network’s portfolio seems to be a little less glamorous than usual. Still, there’s an awful lot of top-notch Android handhelds on the list of gadgets introduced a few hours ago, with the standouts probably being Sony’s Xperia A and Samsung’s Galaxy S4.
The Xperia A, also known as the SO-04E, is basically the Japanese version of the recently unveiled Xperia ZR. Sporting a 4.6-inch 1,280 x 720 pix res display and packing a quad-core Snapdragon S4 Pro CPU beneath the hood, plus 2 GB of RAM and a 2,300 mAh battery, the A sits right beneath the Xperia Z and ZL in the Android food chain.
Right beneath meaning it’s not exactly a top of the line device, but it’s still pretty cool, also running Android 4.1 Jelly Bean and having a 13 MP snapper slapped on its back.
Next up, we have Samsung’s Galaxy S4, whose Japanese intro should not exactly be big news anymore. And yet it is, because the “Land of the Rising Sun” is the first to get the GS4 in the snazzy new “blue arctic” flavor, teased for the first time just a couple of days ago.
Number three and four on NTT DoCoMo’s list, we have two phones from OEMs that are unlikely to ring any bells with Westerners. The Aquos Phone Zeta SH-06E and Arrows NX F-06E will probably never hit stores in America or Europe, which is our loss and our loss only.
The Fujitsu-made NX F-06E is a very big and technically impressive fellow, coming with a 5.2-inch Full HD screen, quad-core Snapdragon 600 CPU, Android 4.2 Jelly Bean, 16 MP rear camera (!!!) and 3,020 mAh battery in tow.
As for the Sharp-manufactured Zeta SH-06E, this looks a little bit more modest in some ways, sporting a 4.8-inch display and coming with a 13 MP main snapper, but it also has one very intriguing ace up its sleeve – that Full HD screen is an IGZO (indium gallium zinc oxide) unit, which we’re hearing can help the phone save up valuable “juice”.
Things don’t stop here for Japan’s number one carrier, but the LG Optimus L-05E, NEC Medias X N-06E, Panasonic Eluga P-03E, Sharp Aquos Phone SH-07E and Fujitsu F-07E are far more modest handhelds and therefore not worthy of anything more than a quick mention from us.
Oh, okay, maybe LG’s L-05E deserves a little more than that, but only because there’s more than an outside chance the thing will make it outside of Asia at some point. This is basically the textbook definition of upper mid-range phone nowadays, coming with a 4.5-inch 720p display, Android 4.2 Jelly Bean, Snapdragon 600 processor, 2,100 mAh battery and 13 MP camera.