Last year, Royole stole the spotlight by revealing the first foldable smartphone, the Royole Flexpai - and at CES 2020, they’re following up with a pair of devices that bring folding screens into new arenas: a smart speaker with a wrap-around screen and a refined smart writing pad.
The first and arguably more exciting device is the Mirage Smart Speaker, which features an 7.8-inch (1,920 x 1,440) Royole AMOLED flexible touch display wrapping about halfway around the device’s cylindrical body. With Alexa integration, this speaker is set up to be an alternative to smart screens like the Amazon Echo Show - except, of course, for folks who want a majorly curved screen instead.
There are simple volume and microphone controls on the top in a transparent disc (you know, for looks). The Mirage Smart Speaker packs a 5MP camera - presumably for video chatting - and two far-field microphones that have a physical mute switch for privacy.
And for audio, the Mirage has three 48mm full-range drivers and a passive bass radiator for 360 audio, per Royole. With its glossy tubular body looking like an old trashcan Mac Pro squeezed into a thinner profile, the Mirage is certainly a different look than the typical ‘airport carpet’-covered smart speakers.
Which makes for an interesting product, but the price might scare away early adopters: the Mirage will retail for $899 / £799, far above even the pricey Apple HomePod and Google Home Max. It will be available in the US and UK (no other region or pricing info currently available) in Q2 2020.
A smaller, slimmer smart writing pad
Royole released its first smart writing pad at last year’s CES, and this year we get the refined version. The RoWrite 2 is nearly half the weight (420g, down from 775g) as its predecessor, and smaller, too, dropping down from 8.5 x 11 to around the size of a standard iPad.
Like the original, the RoWrite 2 uses flexible sensors embedded in its case to transfer text written with the included wireless pen from mundane paper to digital devices. Battery life has been extended to 30 days of standby (lower depending on your use).
The RoWrite 2 will be available in April 2020 for $129 / €129 (around £98 / AU$185) andwill ship in APril 2020, while it will be available in China a month earlier in March 2020 for ¥799.
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