Sailfish was one among many new mobile operating systems that were created to challenge the duopoly of Android and iOS. But with even Windows Phone failing to make a dent despite the backing of Microsoft, Sailfish has been unable to find any success in the market. Sailfish is an open source OS and was taken up by former employees of Nokia who worked on the MeeGo OS, and there has been an extremely minuscule uptake by third-party manufacturers.
But Jolla, the company behind Sailfish, seems to have attracted Intex, as the Indian manufacturer unveiled a new handset that runs Sailfish at MWC 2016. The partnership between the two was formed last year, and has resulted in the Aqua Fish. Like most Intex phones, the Aqua Fish offers mid-range hardware and will be launched in India sometime in April.
The Aqua Fish features a 5-inch HD (1280×720 pixels) display and is powered by a quad-core processor clocked at 1.3GHz and 2GB of RAM. There is an 8-megapixel camera on the back, a 2-megapixel sensor on the front, 16GB of internal storage, dual SIM slots, and a 2,500 mAh battery. The Aqua Fish has support for 4G LTE connectivity, which is a bonus given the expansion of 4G networks set to take place in India in the coming months.
On the software front, the device runs Sailfish 2.0. Sailfish an OS that relies heavily on gestures, similar to BlackBerry 10. Better multitasking is the core feature according to Jolla, and Sailfish also supports running Android apps. It doesn’t come loaded with the Google Play Store, however, so app installation has to be done manually. It severely limits what is available for the end-user, especially since developers put most of their attention on the three big players (iOS, Android and Windows Phone).
Intex has licensed Sailfish OS, so more devices running it should be made available from the company in the future, though it will likely depend on how well the Aqua Fish does in the market. Pricing information hasn’t been revealed, but the Aqua Fish should cost less Rs. 10,000 given its specs.