Carbon fiber, for all its great properties, has one major drawback when used on smartphones. It turns out that it is used only sparingly because it blocks radio waves. The German Carbon Mobile team has spent years solving this problem.
The Carbon 1 MK II is the first smartphone in this term with a carbon fiber monocoque (which means that the external shell provides structural integrity and no internal support). This makes the phone very light (125 g) and thin (6.3 mm).
Important is the hybrid radio-capable composite material, a unique HyRECM technology developed over four years. It combines high quality carbon fiber supplied from Germany with a composite material that allows radio waves to pass through.
In 2017, it took 3 hours to create the shell, but the process has been optimized and it only takes 30 minutes. Even after this 6x speedup, experienced engineers still need to manually cut the material and oversee the molding process.
The monocoque design has no internal frame, so all components are mounted on the carbon fiber itself. Plastic accounts for less than 5% of the materials used in the construction of telephones. In addition, all carbon mobile phones can be disassembled and converted into raw materials.
The Carbon 1 MK II features a 6-inch AMOLED display with a resolution of 1,080 x 2,160 px (18: 9). Protected by the thinnest panel of Gorilla Glass Victus, it measures only 0.4mm.
The smartphone will launch on Android 10, but 11 updates are planned for the second quarter. Carbon Mobile promises two years of software updates and monthly security patches.
The MK II is powered by the Helio P90 chipset (12 nm, 2x Cortex-A75 @ 2.2 GHz + 6x A55 @ 2.0 GHz, PowerVR GM 9446 GPU). Paired with 8GB of LPDDR4X RAM and 256GB of UFS 2.1 storage. The hybrid dual card slot can hold a microSD if needed further. A 3,000 mAh battery can charge up to 50% in 30 minutes.
The rear camera setup has two 16MP sensors (S5K3P9), both of which seem to have the same focal length (and the same f / 2.0 aperture). The selfie camera mounted on the classic bezel above the display has a 20MP sensor instead (S5K3T2).
This is a 4G dual SIM phone. Additional connections include Wi-Fi 5, Bluetooth 5.0 with aptX HD, NFC, GPS / GLONASS / Galileo, and USB-C 3.1 ports. There is no 3.5 mm headphone jack, but there is NFC. In addition, a fingerprint reader is attached to the side.
Carbon 1 MK II can be pre-ordered online today. Official site, Shipping will begin later this month. If you want to see it in person, you’ll see the phone in a physical store in Germany within a few weeks.
And now at the price – there is no way around it, the MKII is expensive at € 800. That said, it’s one of the few small, lightweight phones around, and its carbon fiber monocoque is unique.
Note: If not clear, this company is unrelated to Karbonn Mobile.