The Smartphone of the Future by Philippe Starck

By Paul Joseph

What will our smartphones look like in years to come? Some may imagine they will be embedded into our ears like something out of the movie 'Blade Runner', but perhaps the answer will be rather more stylish.

No surprise that the vision conjured by iconic French designer Philippe Starck has focussed on style as much as function.

The result of a partnership between Starck and compatriot designer Jerome Olivet and the electronics company Thomson, the concept phone is called ‘Alo’ and is far removed from the rectangular blocks we are accustomed to today.

In fact, it doesn’t have a screen at all and instead projects 3D holographic images of what you would usually see on the screen, such as messages, images and movies. It is entirely voice activated and has a translucent elongated “gelatinous” shape designed to easily fit in your hand.

“Alo provides a fully vocalized interface in all phone functions, reads SMS and emails, and even allows them to dictate their messages rather than typing them,” Olivet is quoted as saying.

“The phone’s camera acts as an ‘eye.’ Among other things, it allows the reader to read the texts he detects or to identify the faces. It also allows you to project a 3D hologram to view a movie or message.”

The core of the curved device is made of aluminium alloy and is surrounded by a pliable casing that has been designed to function as a haptic interface. It provides feedback through heat as well as vibration.

According to reports, the designers plan to develop a prototype with Thomson this year.

By Paul Joseph