If this phone looks a little similar to you, you’re not alone. At CES last week, well-known, but once-dead camera brand Polaroid announced a new Android phone, with a rotating camera called the ‘Selfie’. This camera setup has been seen previously in Chinese manufacturer OPPO’s N1 smartphone which they launched last year, and it appears that the similarity in design hasn’t gone unnoticed.
OPPO has issued a statement on the similarities advising:
During CES 2015, it was reported that the Polaroid Selfie smartphone has a remarkably similar design to the patented rotating camera phone, the OPPO N1. OPPO has not licensed the design of the rotating camera to any third parties. We will continue to keep track of the situation and reserve the right to take further legal action.
OPPO is committed to delivering our customers the best possible user experience, and we take great pride in our meticulous design and smart devices.
The Polaroid ‘Selfie’ shares many similarities with the OPPO N1 and the upcoming N3, which OPPO hopes to have in the Australian market in Q1 this year. When it comes to ‘patented’ though, that’s a strong word. There are examples of ‘prior art’ when it comes to the idea of a rotating camera, companies like Sony produced the CLIÉ line of PDAs for one, and there are more examples out there, however OPPO is the most recent. The look of the phones overall is similar, but not identical if you take out the rotating camera.
There’s some similarities in design, the specs for all three phones are another story. The Polaroid Selfie will apparently have a 5.5″ IPS display with 720p resolution, a MediaTek Octa-Core processor, 2GB of RAM, 16GB of internal storage (no microSD Card) and will run Android 5.0 Lollipop. The OPPO N1 has a Snapdragon 600, processor, full HD 5.9″ display, 2GB of RAM, 16/32GB of storage (also no microSD Card), but runs Android 4.2 with OPPO’s ColorOS customisations.
|Polaroid Selfie||Oppo N1||Oppo N3|
|Display||5.5″ IPS display with 720p||5.9″ Full HD (1920×1080) IPS Display||5.5″ Full HD (1920×1080) IPS Display|
|Processor||Octa-Core Mediatek Processor||1.7 GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon 600||2.3GHz Qualcomm MSM8974AA Snapdragon 801|
|Storage||16GB||16/32 GB||32 GB|
|OS||Android 5.0||Android 4.2 with Color OS|
While the availability of the Polaroid phone isn’t known, the likelihood of it reaching the market soon isn’t great based on previous Polaroid Android phone announcements. It’s also worth noting that the Polaroid brand is not really the Polaroid we all once knew and loved. Since Polaroid filed for bankruptcy in 2001, they’ve become a shell corporation hiring out the Polaroid name to products that haven’t always lived up to the quality of the once great photography company whcih most people know and love.
Legally speaking, if OPPO thinks they have something to defend, we’ll soon see. We’ve asked OPPO for more information regarding their patents, which will be interesting to read.
Do you think OPPO has something here?