Earlier this year, in what could be the best or worst decision ever made, Chinese smartphone maker ZTE turned to the general public for ideas for its next smartphone.
The whole project was given the name CSX, which stands for ‘Crowd Sourced X’, and involved the company gathering wisdom from the masses for a mobile device that it would produce and sell, as early as next year.
It was a rather unorthodox approach, as crowdsourcing, albeit for money rather than ideas, is usually the realm of start-ups, and flat-out insane people, and not the usual method for an established company to develop a commercial product.
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But, for better or worse, the enterprise has now resulted in a final design idea, and it’s not quite as crazy as you might expect.
ZTE will now produce a smartphone with eye-tracking capabilities, allowing users to enjoy a hands-free experience. Also, it sticks to walls.
The ZTE Axon Mini
As the company explains in a blog post: “Using eye-tracking, users don’t need to use finger gestures to scroll. But the team went beyond eye-tracking and thought of the complete user experience.
“If it’s hands-free, then the consumer should be able to position the device somewhere that he or she doesn’t have to hold it.
“Thus, the team created the concept of a self-adhesive backing that allows the phone to be mounted to a wall or flat surface.”
The device will also come with a ‘split-screen’ feature that allows only the user to see what’s on-screen, according to the company.
Other ideas that didn’t make the cut include an underwater, VR interactive diving mask and, perhaps the most novel submission, a “Stock Android Flagship Phone” – unthinkable.
We’ll apparently get our first look at a physical version of the eye-tracking sticky phone at CES 2017, if all goes to plan, so watch this space for the latest come January.
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Let us know what you make of ZTE’s upcoming device in the comments.