Sure, MWC gives us an opportunity to check out all the flashy new flagships from some of the hottest companies in mobile, but a trade show this large doesn’t just attract the big players – everyone who’s anyone is also showing up to demo their latest gear. That includes plenty of lesser-known brands – even those that have some big names behind them. You might remember Obi Worldphone from last year, when we took a look at a couple of the first handsets being produced by this company co-founded by ex-Apple CEO John Sculley. Now Obi’s back with its latest smartphone, the MV1.
Like last year’s SF1 and SJ1.5, affordability is the name of the game with the MV1, and Obi intends to sell the handset for just under $140. Of course, when you’re being introduced to a handset that’s priced like that, you know to expect some hardware compromises, and admittedly, the MV1’s specs are on the lower side of mid-range.
The MV1 gets a five-inch 720p display, a Snapdragon 212 SoC, 16GB of internal storage (with the option for microSD expansion), and either 1GB or 2GB of RAM (2GB raises the price to just under $150), depending on configuration. There’s an 8MP main camera, a 2MP front-facer, and dual-SIM support. The phone’s powered by a middle-of-the-road 2500mAh battery.
Like we said, pretty resigned hardware, but at least we’re not talking 8GB storage or anything down in qHD or WVGA territory. Like other Obi models before it, the MV1 has an unusual look with a curved-edge “floating display” above a more squared-off frame. It almost comes off looking like a mash-up of other OEM’s designs – whether the look works for you or not will be a matter of personal taste.
Maybe the most interesting thing about the MV1 is the OS choice it offers: either Android 5.1 or Cyanogen OS 12.1.1. Sales are getting started straight away in Asia and Africa, with Europe and Latin America getting access sometime next month.