Astro Slide 5G Transformer Smartphone Comes with a Slide-out Keyboard, MediaTek Dimensity 1000 SoC (Crowdfunding)

Planet Computers has introduced several smartphones with physical keyboards over the last few years including Gemini PDA and Cosmo Communicator with the later recently received its promised Debian Linux images besides just running Android 9.0.

The company is now back with the new model. Powered by a MediaTek Dimensity 1000 processor, Astro Slide 5G Transformer supports 5G connectivity and comes with a slide-out keyboard following on the steps of the company’s previous smartphones.

Astro Slide 5G Transformer

Astro Slide 5G Transformer preliminary hardware specifications:

  • SoC- MediaTek Dimensity 1000 (MT6889)octa-core processor with 4x Arm Cortex-A77 cores @ 2.6 GHz, 4x Arm Cortex-A55 CPU efficient cores @ 2.0 GHz, Arm Mali-G77 GPU, 4.5 TOPS APU 3.0 AI accelerator / NPU
  • System Memory – At least 6GB LPDD4x RAM
  • Storage – 128 GB flash, MicroSD card slot
  • Display – 6.53″ touchscreen display with 2340×1080 resolution, scratch-resistant glass
  • Camera – 48MP rear camera with flash, 5.0MP front-facing camera
  • Audio – Stereo speakers,  integrated ambient microphone, 3.5mm audio jack
  • Connectivity
    • Cellular
      • Dual 5G worldwide modem with fallback support for 2G/3G/4G
      • NSA/SA networks
      • Downlink up to 4.7Gbps; uplink up to 2.5Gbps
      • VoLTE compatible
      • Dual-nano SIM + eSIM chip
    • WiFi 6  (2 x 802.11ax); VoWi-Fi compatible
    • Bluetooth 5.1 with BLE and audio support
    • GNSS – GPS/AGPS, Glonass, Beidou, GalileoBand L1 + L5 GNSS
    • NFC with payment support
    • FM Radio
  • USB – 2x USB Type C OTG ports with DisplayPort Alt. mode support
  • Keyboard – Slide-out mechanical full keyboard using the Planet Computers’ RockUp slider; 24 Layouts available: Arabic, Chinese, Croatian, Czech, Dvorak, Finnish / Swedish, French, German, Greek, Hebrew, Hungarian, Icelandic, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Norwegian / Danish, Polish, Portuguese, Russian, Spanish, Swiss, Thai, English UK, English US
  • Sensors – Accelerometer, compass, light sensor, gyro, magneto-sensor, fingerprint sensor on display
  • Misc – Volume up / down, On / Lock button
  • Battery
    • 4,000mAh Li-Ion battery
    • Wireless charging + Fast charging
  • Dimensions – 16.4 x 7.66 x 1.5 cm
  • Weight – Around 300 grams

The smartphones will run Android 10 OS and will be “Linux OS compatible”, although based on Cosmo Communicator experience, it may take several months before getting a Linux image.

Astro Slide 5G Transformer has launched on Indiegogo crowdfunding platform with a funding goal of 180,000 Euros. Perks start at 491 Euros for the early bird reward, and the retail price is expected to be 819 Euros. Shipping adds 36 Euros to the United Kingdom and 45 to 63 Euros to other counties. Backers will have to wait nearly one year to get their phone shipped (March 2021) if everything goes according to plans.

Just a note of caution. While Planet Computers has already successfully brought to market two such phones, and COVID-19 pandemic will hopefully be under control by March 2021, the economic and financial repercussions are uncertain, and we should expect a fair amount of bankruptcies occurring this year and next, so it’s still even risker than usual to pledge money into crowdfunding campaigns.

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