Even Yandex, the Russian Google, launches its €240 smartphone

Russian IT giant Yandex has created its first smartphone, a mid-range with dual cameras, Android OS and even a dedicated AI named Alice

To emulate Google, which has been producing smartphones for years and in recent times has also had some success with the Pixel family, even Yandex, the Russian online search giant, has decided to make its first phone, which will run on Android OS.

The phone will be called Yandex.Phone and will have a whole series of Yandex applications pre-installed. Neither more nor less than what happens with classic Android smartphones on which we find many Google apps installed by default. The phone will have mid-range features but at a fairly low price, 240 euros, even if the device is unlikely to be released in the European market. In addition to Yandex apps, on the smartphone we will also find all the classic Android applications, such as Goole Play Store, Gmail and even Chrome, the competing browser of the Russian company. The Yandex.Phone will be on sale online and in Russian physical stores from December 7, 2018.

Yandex.Phone: here's how it's made

As mentioned, the technical features of the Yandex smartphone are not exciting but can still satisfy users accustomed to using entry-level or mid-range phones that are a bit dated. The display of the Yandex.Phone is 6.65 inches with FullHD resolution. On board we find the Snapdragon 640 processor from Qualcomm. It does not lack the fingerprint sensor and also NFC technology for wireless payments. As for the photographic compartment we find a dual rear camera with 12-megapixel main sensor and 5-megapixel secondary sensor. In the front instead there is a 5-megapixel camera for selfies. Yandex.Phone runs on Android 8.1.

One of the most interesting features of the new Yandex smartphone is definitely the built-in artificial intelligence Alice. This is a different AI than others that we are used to using on smartphones and Bluetooth speakers such as Siri, Google Assistant or Amazon's Alexa. In fact, Yandex's Alice doesn't run on an app but is integrated throughout the phone. This means that we will be able to use Alice even while we are playing a video game or when we are watching a video. In addition to smart searches we can use, or rather can use the Russian consumers, Alice for many other operations. Also because Yandex has stated that its AI knows how to do about 34 thousand different actions based on user requests, including booking a cab or ordering food at home.