Project Tango Comes to Mobile With The Lenovo Phab 2 Range

Several years ago this video introduced Johnny Lee to the world. Not long after, Google hired Johnny and he would go on to lead Project Tango. For those of you who may not know, Project Tango is a computer vision platform that allows a Phone/Tablet/Device to know its position relative to the world without using GPS or external signals. This positional awareness is accomplished with a second wide angle camera and a depth sensor. We’ve seen Project Tango demos for a couple of years now, mostly with tablets, but this is the first time in a consumer phone.

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Today at Tech World 2016, Lenovo introduced the world to the first consumer “Project Tango” device – The Phab 2 Pro. The Phab Pro 2 is the top-end version of Lenovo’s’ Phab product line which consists of the Phab 2, the Phab 2 Plus, and the Tango capable Phab 2 Pro. The three devices all share a similar design language and size. Like the Phab 2 and the Plus, the Phab 2 Pro has a gigantic 6.4” display sporting a “2.5D” glass covered 2560 x 1440 LCD display. Lenovo claims the display is an “Assertive Display” that “can adapt to variable lighting conditions like sunlight or light reflections.”

Spec wise, the devices are stratified as expected. Both the Phab 2 and the Phab 2 Plus end Phab models come equipped with MediaTek processors (8735 and 8783 respectively.) The Phab 2 Pro however, comes equipped with a Snapdragon 652, 4GB of RAM, 64GB of storage, and a large 4050 mAh battery with “2.4x turbo charging.”

Phab2-pic7-bigThe body of the Phab Pro 2 is an 8.9mm thick aluminum unibody. The device looks nice enough, but it doesn’t really stand out in a sea of familiar metal phones. Interestingly, up front we have a set of (correctly ordered) capacitive keys with Marshmallow iconography. The speaker and microphone are on bottom in a traditional set of drilled speaker grilles. Unlike the Moto Z, the Phab Pro 2 retains a traditional 3.5mm headphone jack up top.  

Around back, the Phab 2 Pro has a fingerprint reader right below the two necessary Tango cameras. The main camera is a 16MP and is flanked by an additional 8MP sensor. These two Tango sensors are what enables the magic-like augmented reality features like accurate distance measurement and games that overlay the physical world.

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The entire Phab 2 lineup can be purchased directly from Lenovo or other retailers in september. The Phab 2 comes in at $199, the Phab 2 Plus at $299, and finally the Phab Pro 2 for surprisingly reasonable price of $499. Additionally the Phab 2 Pro will be available at Lowe’s home improvement stores. In the meantime, head over to the Play Store to have a look at the Tango capable apps.