Three gray things that may just change Android forever

Three gray things that may just change Android forever

Gray, probably one of the most underrated areas in the world of color theory, was, surprisingly enough, a really interesting part of this year's Mobile World Congress for me. Yes, the event was that exciting. In a world of high resolution, ultra-pixeled color saturated displays, there were three presentations in Barcelona that really stood out for me, and they all involved a healthy serving of gray.

YotaPhone v2
Who would have thought so many interesting things could happen in shades of gray? / © Yota

YotaPhone's e-ink display

Just as we were at the Yota booth, trying to shoot a hands-on video of their new, second-generation dual-screened Android smartphone, the award for best device of the MWC was awarded to Yota, the Russian company that looks set to bring dual-screened e-ink smartphones to the masses. Not surprisingly, the hands-on attempt was a wash out but the device's slick rear cover with an e-ink touchscreen seamlessly integrated made a sufficient impact on me. Not only does the rear screen never turn off, even if your battery dies, it's updated in real-time, so you can get Twitter or RSS feeds updated continually, as well as gray-scaled photos, notifications and much more on the back display, which is, of course, fully customizable. If the more dual-screened e-ink displays coming soon to a flagship near you.

AndroidPIT Samsung Power Saving Mode
How is it AMOLED displays have waited this long for a feature like this? / © NextPit

Samsung's ultra power-saving mode

One of the most impressive but underrated features of the new Galaxy S5 is the new ultra power-saving mode that will get you an additional day, yes, a full day, on just 10% battery charge remaining. When the feature is turned on, the S5 drops to gray-scale and limits the number of apps available, but you'll still have access to the internet, messaging and dialer. As if this wasn't good enough as an emergency feature, you can switch it on anytime you like. So if you know you'll be driving for several hours but still need your phone on for incoming calls or navigation, you can switch it on and maximize your battery life in gray-scale. Keep an eye out for variations of this idea to appear on other AMOLED screened devices soon, it's guaranteed to change the way we think about power saving.

blackphone teaser
The Blackphone offers super-private communications to everyone interested in security. / © blackphone


Ok, the gray theme kind of ran out after the first two on this list, but the Blackphone was a standout presentation at the MWC, even if, like the YotaPhone, we kind of already knew about it beforehand. The Blackphone takes the Android platform we all know and love and adds a layer of security to it like no one else, providing ultra-safe communications for anyone interested in their personal or corporate privacy. PrivatOS offers encrypted communications, Smart Wi-Fi management, app permission management, Silent Circle's suite of secure apps, anonymous web search and secure cloud storage. Whether you live your life in the shadows or simply don't like the idea of handing over all of your personal data to anyone who cares to snoop on it, the Blackphone may well just change the privacy landscape for the better.

What was your favorite announcement or feature during MWC? Were you expecting more Earth-shattering innovations to be revealed?

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  • Sorin Apr 9, 2018 Link to comment

    Android remains Android, as it is, with its problems, with its strange, smaller or bigger ones.

  • if you can't come out with a better battery ... then why not come out with apps which do not use up as much battery power as they used to ... increasing the use of electronic devices with minimal battery usage could be the future of telecommunication ...

  • As I now use my galaxy s3 as a book reader and often run low on battery on lazy reading days the one thing that will convince me to upgrade is a mode like the s5 or an E ink display of sufficient resolution and size

  • It's very interesting too look those three gray things. I like the simplicity.

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