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Red quits the smartphone business after a single terrible phone



Red, a high-end movie camera company, started teasing the world with its first smartphone in 2017. The red "Hydrogen One" was a giant, $ 1,300 smartphone plate, with aluminum or titanium body, ribbed hand grips, a holographic 3D display and a modular system that one day promised to put a real red camera module on your Red smartphone. Red said the phone would "break the mold of conventional thinking," calling it a "holographic media machine in your pocket."

Red, it turns out, is all the talk.

After the release of one phone and zero camera modules, the Red smartphone division is now dead. Company founder Jim Janard has announced the death of the project – and his retirement – in hydrogen forums. Janard simply writes: "I will close the HYDROGEN project" without offering any other thoughts on its flow to the smartphone market.

The hydrogen phone was nothing but a string of broken promises and distractions for the Red. The company couldn't make the initial launch date of "Q1 2018" and instead released the phone in November 2018. Until then, Red released a $ 1,300 smartphone with specifications per year, delivering the Snapdragon 835 when other companies were on the 845 and Android 8.1, when other companies deliver 9.0. Verge's review called the holographic display "blurry and bad", noting that there was hardly any 3D content anyway.

The whole attraction of a phone from Red was the promise of a phone with Red technology for the camera, but the Hydrogen One was released with a camera component off the shelf and average camera performance. Initially, Red promised buyers of his $ 1,300 smartphone that the modular back connector would be home to a "movie camera module", power packs and storage accessories, just like the company's professional cameras. However, these modules were never produced and in March 2019 all the drawings and references to the modules were deleted from the Red website. At the time, Janard – who seems to be in the habit of backing the frustrating message with a new distraction – acknowledged the death of the modular program and began teasing a second smartphone, the Hydrogen Two, which would now never see the light of day.

To hear Janard say it, the blame for the failure of Hydrogen One lies with Red's ODM (Original Design Manufacturer) of China. In a July post, Janard said: “We selected ODM in China to prepare hydrogen for production at Foxconn. While Foxconn was fantastic, our ODM was responsible for mechanically packing our design, including new technologies, along with all technologies. software integration with the Qualcomm processor has dropped significantly. Getting our ODM in China to complete the tasks involved and troubleshoot some of the Hydrogen One problems has proven to be difficult. In fact impossible. "

As early as July, Janard continued to super-hydrogen. With a new design partner, he introduced it as an apology for customers who bought the first Red smartphone. "We fully understand our customer dissatisfaction [Hydrogen One]," he said, promising these customers "significant preferential treatment" in the "distribution of supplies and prices" for the new phone. With Hydrogen Two dead, how does Red now apologize to Hydrogen One customers?

In his funeral post, Janard states that Hydrogen One "will continue to be supported in the future." But given that the phone was last updated in January and the phone is still running a two-year version of Android, we don't expect much in the way of ongoing support.

Image Listing by Red


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