At a recent launch event for Japanese cell phone carrier AU, manufacturer Kyocera allowed users to get their very first hands-on with their newest smartphone, the Urbano Progresso, nicknamed the “bone phone.” The phone earned its nickname earlier this year at the International Consumer Electronics Show in January, while showcasing its new speaker-less technology. The Urbano Progresso is able to transmit vibrations through its touch screen to directly stimulate the tissues in the inner ear, providing clear sound regardless of the listening environment.
Kyocera’s model is the first to make use of newly developed Smart Sonic Receiver technology. The speaker-less receiver provides a unique innovation, and could prove useful for the hard of hearing. Jeff Blagdon of The Verge confirmed the phone’s clear audio during the AU conference. The phone “was easy to hear in the noisy hotel ballroom,” he wrote afterwards.
Outside of the Smart Sonic Receiver, the Urbano Progresso has the usual features expected from a high-end Android smartphone. These include a 4-inch display, dual-core Snapdragon MSM8655 1.4GHz processor and an 8-megapixel camera. Unfortunately for those interested in the technology internationally, the Urbano Progresso will only see a domestic release in Japan.