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Could this spinning phone design flip Motorola’s fortunes?

Images of a fresh concept “spinning” phone from Motorola have appeared online, leading to speculation about what shape its follow up to the Razr Phone 2020 will take.

Yanko Design, an online magazine, published renders of a concept phone that it dubbed the Motorola Revolve earlier this week. The device is “capsule-shaped”, and comprised of two parts that rotate around a connecting section.

The designer notes that the device clearly wouldn’t be a flagship – despite its innovative design – because the screens are so small that you couldn’t watch a Netflix movie or even browse the internet effectively. But this compromising size means that the hypothetical device would struggle to be realised even as a mid-range smartphone.

Nonetheless, it’s an interesting and distinctive idea that is at least a refreshing change from the glassy slab design embodied by almost all modern smartphones.

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If Motorola really were to adopt a path-breaking design such as this it would be the second time in as many years, following on from the Motorola Razr (2019). In our first impressions of the phone, we were intrigued by the gorgeous, nostalgia-triggering design – but there were some drawbacks too.

Firstly, we thought that it felt like a first-generation device rather than the finished product, just like the Samsung Galaxy Fold, with a seemingly delicate construction. On top of that, some of the specifications are underwhelming given the enormous $1500 price tag, particularly the Snapdragon 710 chipset and the lack of a high-end multi-camera system.

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Foldables are becoming more and more common since the design made its debut last year. Other recent examples include the Huawei Mate Xs, and the Samsung Galaxy Z Flip. We’re yet to see the form factor truly break into the mainstream because the prices are simply so high, but their continued production implies that manufacturers foresee success for folding devices. Perhaps the same could eventually prove be true of spinning devices such as this Motorola Revolve concept – but for now, we remain skeptical.

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