Leica phone announced by SoftBank in Japan
SoftBank has announced a Leica-branded phone for the Japanese market. Leica has lent its name to the camera systems of phones before, but this Leitz Phone 1 is the first time the Leica brand and the iconic red dot have taken over a smartphone.
The camera system will of course be paramount for a device like this, and the hardware here is certainly unusual. There’s a single 20-megapixel 1-inch sensor – the largest of all phones – with an ultra-wide f / 1.9 lens equivalent to 19mm, which means other focal lengths need to use digital zoom.
If this sounds familiar to you, well, Sharp announced the exact same thing a month ago. The Aquos R6 has the same Leica-branded camera system – although the Leitz Phone 1 makes it a lot bigger – and other specs like its 120Hz Pro IGZO OLED display are a match, too.
On the other hand, the Aquos R6 does not come with a lens cap and a matching case.
SoftBank also sells the Aquos R6 alongside the Leitz Phone 1 and doesn’t try to hide the similarities between the two phones. Instead, it positions the R6 as a model for someone who just wants the Leica camera, and the Leitz Phone 1 for those who appreciate Leica’s hardware design. And besides, what could be more in line with the Leica tradition than refining existing products with a red dot?
Pre-orders for the Leitz Phone 1 begin tomorrow in Japan. It will cost 187,920 yen, or about $ 1,700.