Following tablet and PC announcements from earlier this week, Lenovo released two new Vibe smartphones that emphasize original design, nifty features, and self obsession. Evidently, selfies are more important than ever.
The flashy Vibe X2 smartphone is the lower-end model of the two new entries, but it captured the most attention. Although the X2 boasts some very zippy features, it’s the physical design that caused the most talk: Designers fashioned three multicolored layers of metal and even wood, and melded them together for something of a layer-cake phone. The X2 will ship in numerous vibrant schemes including gold, bamboo, white, and red variations.
Users can also clip custom modular accessories onto the X2. One of the so-called VIBE Xtensions is a pop-on speaker powered by JBL that doubles as a kickstand for the phone. Another looks like a very thin phone case, but is actually a disguised external battery for 75% more juice.
The selfie-obsessed will have a ball with the X2: With front and back cameras and a batch of "beautification" modes, this smartphone is ready and willing to cater to your every vain command. A 5MP wide-angle front camera activates as soon as you tilt the phone—no fumbling around for a camera app. In addition to the tilt-trigger, there are also gesture controls; merely the flash of pearly whites flips the camera on. Once you've snapped a photo of yourself using the touch-anywhere screen, a beauty bar pops up to erase age lines, add a flattering glow, and so forth.
The X2 will run Android Kitkat 4.4, and house a MediaTEK MT6595 4G LTE True8Core processor. A 5-inch FHD screen offers plenty of space for scrolling fingers, and the intuitive system learns which apps you use the most; the home screen populates accordingly. The X2 will arrive in China by October for $399, followed by Asia Pacific, Eastern Europe, and the Middle East.
A 64-bit flagship Z2 was announced as well. This smartphone bests the X2 in terms of guts, with a Qualcomm Snapdragon Quad Core processor, a 1280x720 HD screen, and even dual SIM support. Like its less-expensive sibling, the Z2 is also ready for your closeup: A 13MP rear camera with optical image stabilization and an 8MP front-facing camera stand guard, and the same gesture and tilt commands as on the other model make shooting quick and easy. The Z2 will hit the same markets as the X2 in the month of October for $429.