5.2/10
Informr score
The YotaPhone currently has an Informr score of 5.2 out of 10. This score is based on our evaluation of 9 sources including reviews from users and the web's most trusted critics.

What's good

  • Two displays in one phone
  • Decent camera
  • Smooth day-to-day performance

What's bad

  • E-ink display suffers from blurry text and ghosting
  • Camera sensor placement very awkward
  • Capacitive buttons for e-ink display not responsive

With the growing number of Android phones available to the market, it can be difficult for manufacturers to stand out from the crowd. Russian designed YotaPhone sparked the interest of many critics as it offers two 4.3" displays: one regular LCD and the other e-ink. The phone switches between LCD to e-ink when performing tasks such as reading and viewing notifications. The phone manufacturer explains that this transition ultimately improves battery life as the e-ink display only consumes power when changing image. While an interesting idea, reviewers ultimately found the 1,800mAh battery lacking. Trusted Reviews states, "…there's limited reasons to use the black and white screen. You can squeeze about a day's use but that's really pushing it." They go on to mention that the battery does charge quickly and goes from fully drained to full capacity in a little over two hours.

In terms of design, the YotaPhone isn't going to win any rewards. Reviewers describe it as boring and blocky. It is fairly thick measuring in at 0.39 inches and not exactly lightweight at 146 grams. Due to the two screens, Yota opted to move the camera sensor to the bottom right hand corner in the back, which forces you to flip the phone any time you want to take a picture. Once they got over the initial awkwardness, critics found the camera adequate. Engadget states, "The 13-megapixel image output is of decent quality…which is a polite way of saying there's little to report in terms of either flaws or bonuses."

The main focus of the device is its two screens. The main display only offers a 720p resolution though this still translates to a pixel density of 320ppi. While not full HD, experts describe the display as sharp though they also warn that its black levels and viewing angles are mediocre. The back e-ink display garnered more negative criticism due to blurriness of text as well as very noticeable ghosting. Not only that but it also lacks many of the features found in current e-readers such as lack of color, no back-lighting and no touch sensitivity. There is a capacitive area beneath the panel that responds to swipes, taps and holds, but most reviewers describe it as being unresponsive with T3 adding, "…trying to read an eBook becomes a chore as it'll take several swipes to change the page."

In keeping with the general theme, the internal specs of the phone are not inspiring. It's equipped with a 1.7GHz dual-core processor, 2GB of RAM and 32GB of internal storage. Despite only have a dual-core processor, reviewers found that it ran relatively smooth for normal day-to-day use even when streaming videos and multi-tasking. They did notice some slow down and stuttering when playing more graphics heavy games though.

Most critics found the idea of the YotaPhone interesting but its actual execution lacking. CNET sums up, "If a better quality display is used and YotaPhone works much more closely with developers, its next generation device might be worth checking out."


Operating system
Android
Processor
1.7 GHz
Screen Size
4.3"
Camera
13+ MP


What the Critics Are Saying...


Digit

Ever since we heard of the YotaPhone we were quite intrigued with the technology it was bringing to the table but once we tested it, we were left disappointed. YotaPhone has missed its opportunity to bring something that could have been a true game changer. The incomplete implementation of its e-ink...

- Hardik Singh, Digit
Recombu

As much as we love what Yota Devices has gone for with the dual screen concept, the YotaPhone fails first and foremost at being a decent phone. We love the idea of having a second e-ink screen on the back of a phone, given that poor battery life plagues virtually every modern phone out there. The Yo...

- Thomas Newton, Recombu
The Gadget Show

It’s gimmicky, sure, but the YotaPhone also comes with some genuinely handy features that genuinely make this one to consider if you're shopping for a new phone SIM-free (It rings up £419 on the till, which is substantially more than a Google Nexus 5, but less than a new HTC One (M8) or...

- The Gadget Show team, The Gadget Show
The Inquirer

Although the Yotaphone offers some unique design features and feels sturdy, we think that what makes it original also makes it somewhat style over substance.The secondary screen is a great idea that lets users check notifications and read books in brightly lit environments without draining the batte...

- Lee Bell, The Inquirer
TrustedReviews

The YotaPhone is a clever two-screen smartphone, but it needs to get a whole lot smarter and more powerful before we'd consider buying one.

- Michael Sawh, TrustedReviews


Prices (Where to Buy)




Common Questions


Yota Devices released the YotaPhone on December 4, 2013.


Yota Devices backs up the YotaPhone with a 1 Year parts & labour warranty.


If your YotaPhone has problems and is still within its warranty period, you could contact Yota Devices support or the retailer you purchased the phone from. You'll find Yota Devices's contact information here. If your phone is off warranty and needs repair for a physical problem such as a broken screen or bad battery, you should visit an authorized service centre or a local phone repair shop. You can also connect with others in The Informr Community Forum to find and share answers to questions.




Resources


Manuals / User Guides Helpful Links Share / Embed

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Quick view

Screen Size
4.3"

The YotaPhone's screen size is 4.3 inches with x pixels resolution.

Processor
1.7 GHz

There is a Krait Dual core 1.7 GHz processor (CPU).

OS

The phone runs on proprietary operating system firmware.

Camera
13+ MP

You can take photos or capture video with the phone's onboard 13+ megapixel camera.

There is also a secondary front facing camera with 1+ megapixels resolution.

Storage
32 GB

Internal memory is 32 GB. No external card slot is available for expansion.

Battery
1800mAh

The phone is powered by a Lithium-Ion (Li-Ion), 1800 mAh battery. Yota Devices's performance ratings are 13.6 days standby time, 1320 minutes, 348 minutes Wi-Fi surfing.

YotaPhone Specs

Overview
Release date December 4, 2013
Regions available UK
Networks
GSM:
900/1800/1900 MHz
UMTS:
900/2100 MHz
LTE:
800/1800/2600 MHz
Data:
GPRS, EDGE, HSUPA, HSPA+, LTE
SIM card Micro-SIM
Dual SIM No
Operating System

Compare Android Smartphones

Processor Krait Dual core 1.7 GHz
Internal Storage 32 GB
RAM 2 GB
ROM No
GPS Type A-GPS
Digital compass Yes
Flightmode Yes
Hearing Aid Compatible No
TTY/TDD No
Noise Cancellation No
SAR Head: 0.57 W/kg
Body: 0.276 W/kg
Languages English
Manufacturer Warranty 1 Year
Accessories Included AC Charger, Manual, Standard Battery
Power & battery
Type Lithium-Ion (Li-Ion)
Battery Capacity 1800 mAh
Removable Battery No
Wireless Charging No
Fast Charging No
Video Playback Time Up to: 444 minutes
Internet Use (Wi-Fi) Up to: 348 minutes
Internet Use (Celluar) Unknown
Talk Time Up to: 1320 minutes
Standby Time Up to: 13.6 days
Physical Characteristics
Design type Bar
Multi-Use Smart Phone / PDA Yes
Material Plastic
Colors Black, White
Dimensions [H x W x D] 13.4 x 6.7 x 1.0 cm (5.3 x 2.6 x 0.4 in)
Weight 146 grams
Water Resistant / Waterproof Unknown
Rugged design No
IP Rating No
Antenna Type Internal
Changeable Faceplates No
Display / Screen
Type Color
Technology LCD (IPS)
Colors 16.7 million
Resolution x pixels
Pixel density 342 pixels
Size 4.3 inches
3D No
Secondary Display Grayscale E-ink, 360 x 640 pixels, 4.3 inches
Sensors Ambient Light, Proximity, Motion / Accelerometer, Gyroscope
Graphics Yes
Themes Yes
Backlit Illumination Yes
Zoom / Magnification Yes
Screen Orientation Lock Yes
Multi-Touch Yes
Fingerprint-Resistant Coating No
Additional Display Features Capacitive touch screen
Input / Navigation
Sleep / Wake Key Yes
Home Key No
Mute Key No
Input Type Touchscreen
Navigation Type Touchscreen
Predictive Text Entry Yes
Physical keyboard No
Voicemail Key No
Any Key Answer No
Voice Commands Yes
Keypad/Screen Lock Yes
External Volume Control Yes
External Media Playback Controls No
Fingerprint Sensor No
Call Management
Wi-Fi Calling No
Voice over LTE (VoLTE) No
Contact List Capacity Depends on system memory
Multiple Numbers Per Contact Email address, Other fields
Contact Groups Yes
Auto Answer No
Voice Activated Dialing Yes
Photo Caller ID Yes
Web / Email / Messaging
Web Browser Yes
Email Client Yes
Email Protocols POP3, IMAP, SMTP, Microsoft Exchange
Additional Email Features Gmail
Messaging SMS, MMS, Google Talk
Push-to-talk (PTT) No
Connectivity
USB Micro-USB 2.0
USB OTG Support No
Infrared No
Bluetooth 4.0
Bluetooth Profiles A2DP, AVRCP, OPP/FTP, HFP, HSP
Bluetooth Audio Codecs SBC
WiFi 802.11 a/b/g/n
WiFi Encryption No
Mobile Hotspot Yes
WiMAX No
Memory Expansion Slot No
Expansion Slot Info
PC Synchronization Yes
TV Out No
DLNA Support No
NFC No
UMA Support No
Data Tethering Compatibility Yes
Java Applications No
Brew Applications No
ECML / Digital Wallet No
PictBridge No
Camera
Main Camera
Aperture
Unknown
Resolution
13+ megapixels
Dual lens
No
Zoom
Yes
Flash
Yes (LED)
Additional Rear Camera Info
Auto focus, Panorama, White balance, Scene mode
Video Recording Formats
3GP / 3GPP, H.264 / AVC, MPEG-4
Video Recording Parameters
Front Camera
Resolution
1+ megapixels
Zoom
Additional Front Camera Info
No
Video Recording Parameters
Audio / Video
Audio Playback Yes
Audio Formats MIDI, MP3, eAAC+, eAAC, AAC, AMR, WAV
Radio Yes (FM)
Video Playback Yes
Video Playback Formats 3GP / 3GPP, H.264 / AVC, MPEG-4
Mobile TV No
Streaming Video Yes
External Speakers Yes
Headset Jack 3.5mm
Custom Ringtones Yes
Vibration Alert Yes
Downloadable Ringtones Yes
Ringtone Composer No
Ringer ID Yes
Haptic Feedback Vibration Yes
Speakerphone Yes
Apps
To-Do / Task List Yes
Calendar Yes
World Clock No
Alarm Yes
Stop Watch No
Timer No
Calculator Yes
Currency Converter No
Viewable document types No
Weather No
Stocks No
Maps Yes
NotePad No
Voice Memos / Recorder Yes
Games Downloadable
Apps Downloadable ()
Included Software / Apps -
More
Additional comments YotaPhone Manual
Related Links Quick Start Guide (PDF)
YotaPhone Reviews
Where to buy YotaPhone
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Critic Reviews


Digit

Miserably fails as a modern smartphone

from Digit

Ever since we heard of the YotaPhone we were quite intrigued with the technology it was bringing to the table but once we tested it, we were left disappointed. YotaPhone has missed its opportunity to bring something that could have been a true game changer. The incomplete implementation of its e-...More

Ever since we heard of the YotaPhone we were quite intrigued with the technology it was bringing to the table but once we tested it, we were left disappointed. YotaPhone has missed its opportunity to bring something that could have been a true game changer. The incomplete implementation of its e-ink display and average performance for its price weigh the phone down.

Read full review

Less

Recombu

Novel dual-screen design but uncomfortable to hold and has average performance

from Recombu

As much as we love what Yota Devices has gone for with the dual screen concept, the YotaPhone fails first and foremost at being a decent phone.

We love the idea of having a second e-ink screen on the back of a phone, given that poor battery life plagues virtually every modern phone ou...More

As much as we love what Yota Devices has gone for with the dual screen concept, the YotaPhone fails first and foremost at being a decent phone.

We love the idea of having a second e-ink screen on the back of a phone, given that poor battery life plagues virtually every modern phone out there. The YotaPhone is a brave attempt to solve this 21st Century bugbear, but really fails to impress elsewhere. Hopefully follow up phone the YotaPhone 2, with its curved edges and (hopefully) good old-fashioned buttons, will win our hearts and minds.  

Read full review

Less

The Gadget Show

A solid, almost featureless black slab

from The Gadget Show

It’s gimmicky, sure, but the YotaPhone also comes with some genuinely handy features that genuinely make this one to consider if you're shopping for a new phone SIM-free (It rings up £419 on the till, which is substantially more than a Google Nexus 5, but less than a new HTC One (M8)...More

It’s gimmicky, sure, but the YotaPhone also comes with some genuinely handy features that genuinely make this one to consider if you're shopping for a new phone SIM-free (It rings up £419 on the till, which is substantially more than a Google Nexus 5, but less than a new HTC One (M8) or Samsung Galaxy S5. We loved having such easy access to relevant information without unlocking the device, and its svelte frame is a cut above several rival Android makers. The confusing control mechanism can be overcome with a little practice, and might even serve to discourage others from fiddling with your phone in the long run. Overall, we loved the E Ink equipped YotaPhone, confusing controls and all.

Read full review

Less

The Inquirer

An Android smartphone featuring an always-on e-ink display

from The Inquirer

Although the Yotaphone offers some unique design features and feels sturdy, we think that what makes it original also makes it somewhat style over substance.

The secondary screen is a great idea that lets users check notifications and read books in brightly lit environments without draining the battery, but in reality it doesn't work very well and the capacitive touch buttons were not as responsive as we would have liked...

More

Although the Yotaphone offers some unique design features and feels sturdy, we think that what makes it original also makes it somewhat style over substance.

The secondary screen is a great idea that lets users check notifications and read books in brightly lit environments without draining the battery, but in reality it doesn't work very well and the capacitive touch buttons were not as responsive as we would have liked.

Users forking out for the Yotaphone might find that they are paying for the unique design and features as opposed to higher internal specifications, which might have made up for the rather unresponsive back screen. Overall, it's a quirky phone but it's lacking in performance. 

Read full review

Less

TrustedReviews

A phone with a really interesting idea but it falls short in the areas it promised to excel

from TrustedReviews

The YotaPhone is a clever two-screen smartphone, but it needs to get a whole lot smarter and more powerful before we'd consider buying one.

Read full review

The YotaPhone is a clever two-screen smartphone, but it needs to get a whole lot smarter and more powerful before we'd consider buying one.

Read full review

Less

T3

The fact that the Yota Phone even exists is a great thing

from T3

The fact that the Yota Phone even exists is a great thing. Smartphone manufacturers should be more adventurous, testing out new technologies and actually putting them in the hands of the public.

Of course, that doesn't mean they'll get it right first time, just look at the original Samsung Galaxy Gear...

More

The fact that the Yota Phone even exists is a great thing. Smartphone manufacturers should be more adventurous, testing out new technologies and actually putting them in the hands of the public.

Of course, that doesn't mean they'll get it right first time, just look at the original Samsung Galaxy Gear.

In this case the original YotaPhone is a solid first step, but it's not at the stage where we'd recommend it over a single-screen device.

Read full review

Less

Cnet

An interesting dual-screen phone that falls short of expectations

from Cnet

Having an E Ink display on the back of the phone to let you comfortably read books or long articles without quickly draining the battery is a great idea in theory. I'm sold on the concept, but I don't think the YotaPhone is quite there yet.

Its E Ink screen is very low quality, which m...More

Having an E Ink display on the back of the phone to let you comfortably read books or long articles without quickly draining the battery is a great idea in theory. I'm sold on the concept, but I don't think the YotaPhone is quite there yet.

Its E Ink screen is very low quality, which makes doing even basic tasks with it unpleasant. There's a definite lack of support for the display from third-party developers, meaning there's not much you can do with it just yet.

Read full review

Less

Forbes

The Android smartphone from Russia with two screens

from Forbes

Yota have delivered with their first handset and if you do pick it up you;re going to have a solid Android handset that has a delightful twist when you turn it over. Naturally Yota will be working on follow-up devices, but for now they have managed something that many companies would love to do&h...More

Yota have delivered with their first handset and if you do pick it up you;re going to have a solid Android handset that has a delightful twist when you turn it over. Naturally Yota will be working on follow-up devices, but for now they have managed something that many companies would love to do… to take a prototype that captured the media’s attention at CES and bringing it to market during the year. Simply put, e-Ink and a second screen do work on a smartphone, and Yota have done more than enough to be considered as players in the smartphone marketplace.

Read full review

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Engadget

LCD on the front, E Ink on the back, unique all over

from Engadget

This is an unhappy conclusion to reach, given all the technical challenges that Yota Devices has overcome in the past couple of years. But it's unavoidable: The YotaPhone isn't yet ready to deliver on its dual-screen promise due to various issues ranging from poor build quality to short battery l...More

This is an unhappy conclusion to reach, given all the technical challenges that Yota Devices has overcome in the past couple of years. But it's unavoidable: The YotaPhone isn't yet ready to deliver on its dual-screen promise due to various issues ranging from poor build quality to short battery life and, most importantly, an inability to make use of its rear E Ink panel except in a very limited selection of pre-installed apps. Without support for our favorite e-book and magazine platforms, or for Spotify and other streaming apps, or transport updates and Google Now (which we're told is coming soon), there just isn't much reason for us to flip the phone over.

Read full review

Less



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