One of the more interesting technologies to emerge from this year’s Consumer Electronics Show was a bone conduction speakerphone system Kyocera had to demonstrate. Rather than getting sound from the phone to our ears by using a speaker to create audible pressure waves in the air, this technology causes the phone itself to vibrate such that it directly transmits sound when held up against your head. The potential benefits are numerous, from helping keep calls private to making it possible to hear someone in a crowded environment. Now we get our first look at how Kyocera will bring the system to market, with the Urbano Progresso Android handset.
Slated for Japan’s KDDI, the Ice Cream Sandwich phone has a four-inch WVGA AMOLED display, an 8.1-megapixel camera, and runs a 1.4GHz MSM8655 Snapdragon. For the commercial release of this bone conduction technology, Kyocera is branding it as the Smart Sonic Receiver.
With plenty of Japan-specific features like its TV tuner, we won’t see this Urbano Progresso make much of an international splash when it goes up for sale later this month. Kyocera does have plans for bringing this tech to handsets in other markets, but that may take another six months or more.