Nextbit’s cloud-focused phone is shaping up to be something special

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Just one look at the technology market over the last few years would be all you’d need to tell that everyone’s focus is being put on the cloud and mobile devices, which is why it’s odd that nobody has really combined the two yet. Don’t get me wrong, the cloud and mobile devices intersect all the time, but they’ve never been combined into something new, which is why Nexbit’s upcoming smartphone is so interesting. Known as the Robin, this cloud-focused smartphone will be the first of its kind, as it focuses almost entirely on cloud storage instead of physical storage, and if what we saw at CES is anything to go by, it’s shaping up to be something pretty special. 

At CES 2016, our own Nirave Gondhia interviewed Nextbit Head of Product, Scott Croyle. Together, the two discussed how much progress the Kickstarter-backed, cloud-centric Robin has made in the last few months of developments since our first hands on last September. Nextbit really is putting together an interesting product with the Robin. The $399 device is unique because instead of focusing primarily on internal storage, owners of the Robin will get 100GB of free cloud storage upon purchase. The idea is to make cloud-storage the default method of memory storage instead of physical storage. In the interview, Croyle really shines when he begins discussing the physical, aesthetic design of the Robin, which has turned some heads with its unusual boxy shape and circle motif. In a world of curved edges and concealed sensors, the Robin really does stand apart in an eye-catching way. Croyle credits Nextbit’s smallness for this design, noting that larger companies tend to land on more samey aesthetics because of the number of hands involved in the design process. The Robin is much more of an auteur product, the vision of a small number of people who are passionate about what they are doing.

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