updated 01:15 pm EST, Tue March 6, 2007
NTT Raku-Raku Phone
NTT DoCoMo bucked trends in cellphone design today by announcing the Raku-Raku PHONE Basic. Rather than dwell on media playback, the Basic uses its intelligence to automatically adjust settings for the hard of hearing, seniors, or first-time cellphone owners. A Slow Voice function automatically slows down incoming conversations to help follow fast callers; Clear Voice, in turn, auto-senses the ambient noise level and raises the volume of calls and ringtones to match. The clamshell will also voice the names of callers or e-mail senders, enlarge fonts, and send pre-made replies to messages.
Even with this emphasis, NTT says, the phone is still advanced enough to receive "push" news and alerts to its secondary display and doubles as a pedometer to track distance and exercise. Prices are unlisted, but the phone should be ready for an April release with the Japanese carrier in black, gold, pink, or white. [via SlashPhone]