German engineering is renowned the world over for being sleek, effective and industry-leading, no matter what it’s applied to. Cars, kitchen appliances… chocolate. It’s all good stuff.
So how does a German-made smartphone sound? The Linshof i8 is the first to ever be created within the country, and we’re both slightly surprised and extremely pleased to say that it’s lived up to expectations.
The first thing you’ll almost certainly notice is that it’s octagonal, so let’s get that out of the way. It’ll appeal to some, perhaps less to others, but either way it’s nice to see a company trying something different. If you can look past the i8’s shape to it’s actual build there’s a wonderfully premium smartphone to be found. There’s a metallic edge running all the way around the device, whilst its backside is made one solid plate of brushed aluminium. It looks great – we’re fans of the ‘white coffee’ colour variant, although plain black is available too.
Its side profile also seems remarkably slim. Unfortunately Linshof hasn’t released the physical dimensions of the i8 yet, so we can only speculate as to how thin it actually is. In fact our only real worry about it is that the bezels look like they could be a touch on the large side, which is a real turn-off for some – especially when considering that the Android navigation buttons are on-screen rather than physical. We do know that it’ll weigh 140g, though – that’s 11g heavier than the iPhone 6, so it’s no lightweight.
The display itself is a 5-inch super AMOLED with full-HD 1080p resolution. The processor is a 2.1GHz octa-core of as-yet unknown origin, whilst there’s 3GB of RAM backing it up. That may seem a touch excessive given that that’s the most RAM current smartphone architecture an effectively accommodate, but there’s a good reason for it: 80GB of internal storage.
Whilst that’s an extremely generous figure it seems that there’s no expandable storage option, so depending on your usual storage habits that may actually be less than you’re used to. If you really want to go crazy there’s also the Linshof i8 Space variant, which is the exact same smartphone but with an insane 144GB of built-in storage.
The rear-facing camera is a respectable 13MP lens with a Sony CMOS sensor, whilst the snapper on the front is an extremely impressive 8MP.
It’s 4G compatible and will also come running Android 5.0 Lollipop out of the box when it lands in Q1 2015.
And what will all of this Vorsprung durch Technik set you back? The Linshof i8 is priced at just $380 (with no price yet announced for the i8 Space). That’s pretty reasonable if you ask us, and should probably come in at around the £300 mark when it hopefully makes its way to the UK.