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Motorola re-spins MP3-playing Linux cameraphone

Apr 4, 2005 — by Henry Kingman — from the LinuxDevices Archive

Motorola will re-launch its multimedia-oriented tri-band Linux smartphone in the Asia Pacific this month. The E680i offers 2GB of file storage, a VGA camera with 8x zoom, a QVGA touchscreen, and support for bluetooth headphones and other peripherals.

(Click for larger view of E680i)

The E680i appears to closely resemble the E680, which appeared in March, 2004. The “i” model's main improvement over the first-generation E680 appears to be the ability to store up to 2GB of user files, instead of 1GB. The new model also supports video capture. And, according to a Helix Community forum post, it uses a streaming media player from the open source Helix Project, started by Real Networks in August of 2003.

Motorola E680i, front and back

According to Motorola, the E680i supports MP3, WMA, RealAudio/Video, MIDI, WAV, AAC, “and a range of others formats.” Like the earlier E680, the E680i includes rear-mounted stereo surround 3D speakers — reviewers of the E680 were surprised by the device's high volume, especially when placed on a table or other resonant surface.

Like the earlier E680, the E680i includes a J2ME runtime environment, supporting a variety of downloadable Java games and other applications. According to Motorola, the E680 supports landscape-mode games with 8-way navigation, gaming “action keys,” midi soundtracks, and vibration.

Motorola's previous Linux phones have been based on MontaVista Linux, along with Trolltech's Qt/Embedded graphics framework. Motorola did not immediately confirm that the E680i has a similar design.

A Motorola official in Asia said in January that Motorola will introduce eight to 10 Linux phones in 2005.

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