Hong Kong-based Phonejoy isn't a company you've heard of before, but as its name suggests, Phonejoy is a mobile-based company. Its first product was the Phonejoy Gamepad, a controller for your mobile device. Its latest product encompasses more than just mobile gaming, and what it has to offer could bring it more attention in the coming months.
It's called the Phonejoy Hub, and it makes your phone the center of every digital interaction. Essentially, it makes your phone the main device in the office, on the go, and at home.
The Phonejoy Hub is actually comprised of two devices. The first is what Phonejoy calls the cradle. Users can place their phone on it via micro-USB and then use the HDMI port in the back of the cradle to connect it to a larger display at home or in the office. This way, your mobile device is the only thing needed for productivity, entertainment, and gaming. The cradle also works as a stand, which works well for video calls, and it can also charge your mobile device while it's in use.
The second device is a Bluetooth-connected keyboard, which looks somewhat similar to Apple's wireless Bluetooth keyboard. Aside from the usual tenkeyless setup, it features special Android hotkeys such as the ability to answer and end calls, switching apps, and the ability to activate the integrated wireless headset. It also includes a touchpad so you can easily move around the connected display as well as your own mobile device. Phonejoy said it uses two AA batteries to power the keyboard for about one year.
The third piece is software, which can be downloaded via Google Play. It runs in the background and detects when your phone is placed in the cradle. The app allows you to change various settings such as resolution and screen alignment. It also provides access to cloud services, which the company said comes in handy when working with high-productivity conditions such as video editing or working with graphics. Even with today's technology, the phone's hardware has its limits, and cloud services can help bear the heavy load of productivity.
Phonejoy said the Hub is compatible with many Android-based mobile devices from companies such as LG, Samsung and HTC. Sorry iOS users, but it's still unclear if the Hub will eventually expand to support the iPhone. However, that would mean that the cradle would need a different dock than a micro-USB because the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus use Thunderbolt.
The company is currently planning a Kickstarter campaign with a goal of $150,000 for fine tuning purposes, a pre-production run, and the first consumer products. Phonejoy estimated the consumer retail price to be around $160.
Overall, the idea does sound interesting, and the large amount of supported devices means that should be at least a few adopters. However, the idea of ditching your consoles and PC and putting all your work on a smartphone is a bit unconventional. The way we use smartphones today is independent of these living room and bedroom stations, but the fact that we use smartphones more and more than a PC or console for everyday use certainly makes the case for the Hub. If enough people are willing to part with their PC for work and play as well as their gaming console for living room games and entertainment – both of which are highly doubtful – then the Phonejoy Hub might have a fighting chance.