The Sharp Android One S3 embodies stock Android goodness in a tough shell

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Sharp Corp., Japan has announced the company’s next Android One phone, the Sharp Android One S3. As the name suggests, it is Sharp’s low-cost Android One offering and will be available in Japan via Y! Mobile in four colors. The phone comes with Android 8.0 Oreo out of the box and sports a fairly modest spec sheet. The Android One S3 is a successor to the Sharp X1, which was part of the Android One program in 2017.

The Android One S3 is powered a Qualcomm Snapdragon 430 SoC with 3 GB RAM and 32 GB of storage that can be expanded via microSD card. The phone features a 5-inch 1080p IGZO display, which has not yet embraced the (near) bezel-less philosophy. However, the company is touting vivid images thanks to the S-Pure LED backlight. A 13 MP rear camera and a 5 MP front-facing camera help with the imaging. Rounding off the specs is a 2,700 mAh battery that should last for a typical workday considering the low-end SoC and the bloat-free OS.

Sharp

The S3 is restricted to the Japanese market for a price of JPY 32,400 (US$300). Apparently, there’s no fingerprint reader (an oddity in this age) but the phone is MIL-SPEC rated for drops and is dust and water resistant. That should explain why the price is a bit higher for the specifications on offer.

Google’s Android One program used to have lackluster offerings at best but thanks to devices such as the Xiaomi Mi A1 and the HTC U11 Life, we are seeing some good phones with stock Android at competitive price points. Sharp was one of the initial partners of the Android One program in Japan, with the Sharp 507SH being the country’s first Android One device. The Japanese OEM followed it up with the Sharp X1 in 2017 and now we have the Android One S3. This is not the supposed Aquos S3, however. We should hear about that model in the weeks running up to MWC 2018.

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