Presence of a notch in the display of a smartphone has divided the users and the tech community alike. It all started with Apple iPhone X, to decrease the bezels and increase the screen real estate. Since then, most of the other manufacturers have adopted the notch-design. As a result, devices with various sizes of notch are now readily available in the market. Sharp, in an utter ‘notchsense’, has now introduced a phone with two notches – one at either end!
Dual notch design
Termed Sharp Aquos R2 Compact, the top notch housing the selfie camera is smaller in size compared to the one below that holds the Home button with a built-in fingerprint scanner. I wonder if the 2 in R2 is for the number of notches. Rest assured, Android OEMs will not be able to scale up this number, thanks to the restriction by Google.
Sharp Aquos R2 comes with an impressive set of hardware. The display is a 5.2-inch panel with 485 pixels-per-inch and 2280×1080 pixels resolution. Powered by Snapdragon 845 chipset, the phone features 4 GB RAM and 64 gigs of internal memory (expandable up to 512 GB). The primary camera is a 22.6 MP f/1.9 shooter. The front camera is an 8 MP f/2.2 lens. A 2,500 mAh battery is deployed, which can be charged via the USB-C port. The headphone jack is retained.
The smartphone runs on Android Pie, thus taking advantage of the notched-display support available in the operating system.
Availability and pricing
Sharp Aquos R2 Compact is most likely to be available only in the Japanese market, so you can either take a sigh of relief or disappointment depending upon which side of the notch-war you are on. It is supposed to go on sale in 2019, and the price is likely to be announced in the future.
Talking of two in number, the industry has already implemented dual cameras (on either side), and then scaled up to include three, four, and even more lenses to date. Even dual displays are a reality – LG had put a smaller display on top, and Meizu had used an e-ink powered always-on display at the rear. Although these applications make sense, adding more notches does not. It is like making an already unattractive thing even uglier. Dear manufacturers, notch is a bug, not a feature. Stop marketing it as one.