Foldables or dual-screen devices are already here whether you like it or not. The latest examples would be recently released Moto Razr, Galaxy Fold, Huawei Mate X and Surface Duo from Microsoft. However, these devices come with a hefty price tag of over USD 1500, which is a straight no for most of the people. The good news is, there is another option to experience the “dual-screen” tech for an affordable price with this new crowdfunding campaign castAway.
Design and Specs
Unlike other foldables in the market, castAway takes a very much similar approach to LG G8X ThinQ and adds a secondary powerful display to your smartphone with a case. Wait, there’s a catch, your phone has to be either Apple’s or Samsung’s; Apple’s iPhone 6, 6 Plus, 6s, 6s Plus, 7, 7 Plus, 8, 8 Plus X, XS, XS Max, XR, 11, 11 Pro, and 11 Pro Max, or Samsung’s Galaxy S7, S8, S8+, S9, S9+, S10, S10+, Note 7, Note 8, Note 9, and Note 10.
The castAway comes in two different sizes; 5.8 inches modeled as castAway One and 6.3 inches modeled as castAway One Plus. Under the hood, castAway packs OP1 Hexa-core chipset clocked at up to 2.0GHz aided by Mali-T864 graphics, 4GB RAM, 32GB of storage, and 32WHr battery. And top of that, you’ll find a 5MP rear camera and 2MP front-facing camera.
Speaking of the connectivity and the ports, the case has in-built Wi-Fi and Bluetooth 4.1, and comes with horizontal and vertical USB-C ports, and a 3.5mm headphone jack. And these all hardware are set in harmony with the Chrome OS running.
How does castAway works?
By now, you must be aware castAway is more than just a case or a secondary display, in fact, it’s like another smartphone attached to your existing smartphone, only this one runs on Chrome OS.
The castAway and your phone run on the proprietary MultiTask+ app which connects the devices and enables the communication between them over an encrypted Wi-Fi channel. To understand, take it in the same way you would use a second monitor with a PC. Besides, should you even detach your phone from the case, the castAway will continue to function as a standalone device while continuing to communicate with the phone.
More than that, once connected, any of the USB-C ports can charge both devices simultaneously and also, can use castAway as a power bank to juice up your phone’s battery.
Adding up an almost full-fledged device to your phone might sound bulky. But as per its creators’ claims, the castAway adds about only 180 grams of weight, which should not be much of an issue.
Pricing and Availability
CastAway is currently in its crowdfunding stage (has already met the initial funding goal) and if everything goes as planned, the cases should ship worldwide in May 2020 except in the US.
For the early adopters, CastAway One for both the iPhone and the Android is priced at 129 USD, and the bigger CastAway One Plus variant for 139 USD. However, when the cases come to the market, the prices are expected to go a little higher, 249 USD for the smaller CastAway One and 269 USD for the larger “Plus” model.
castAway Full Specs Run-down
|Variants & Dimensions||CastAway One: 14.6 x 8.5 x 1.5cm
CastAway One Plus: 16 x 9.4 x 1.5cm
|Display||Multi-Touch QXGA Screen
CastAway One: 5.8 inches
CastAway One Plus: 6.3 inches
|SoC||OP1 Chipset, Made for Chromebooks,
Hexa-core (Dual ARM® Cortex®-A72, Quad Cortex®-A53 big.LITTLE™ configuration) Processor, 1.5 GHz (up to 2.0 GHz
|RAM||4GB LPDDR3 1866|
|Cameras||5MP Rear Camera
2MP Front Camera
|Battery||35 WHr battery Li-Polymer, 1S2P|
|Sensors & Audio||G-Sensor, Gyro & Stereo Speakers|
|Connectivity||WLAN 802.11 [email protected]/ 5GHz, Bluetooth 4.1|
|Ports||Horizontal & Vertical USB 3.1 gen1 Type-C Ports (Full-function, support PD+Alt. mode+BC1.2, Support NB charging)
1X Audio Combo Jack
1 x micro SD card
Upgraded Options: Chrome & Black Leather
|Compatibility||Apple: iPhone 6, 6 Plus, 6s, 6s Plus, 7, 7 Plus, 8, 8 Plus X, XS, XS Max, XR, 11, 11 Pro, and 11 Pro Max
Android: Samsung Galaxy S7, S8, S8+, S9, S9+, S10, S10+, Note 7, Note 8, Note 9, and Note 10