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Introducing the Manta X7: The completely button-less smartphone

Chinese smartphone manufacturer Manta is planning to announce a handset without any physical buttons at all.

Instead, the X7 is reported to use a proximity sensor to intuitively shift on-screen buttons around so that they are always within reach.

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While a number of handsets have already done away with front-facing buttons, including the LG G3 and Google’s Nexus 5, they’re normally found elsewhere on the device. The Manta X7, however, claims to be completely button-less, forcing owners to operate the smartphone in a slightly different way.

Manta has incorporated a proximity controlled system into the edge of the handset, which means that users should never have to stretch for an on-screen button ever again. Sources indicate that the device will automatically detect how the user is holding the phone and shift on-screen panels and keypads to be closer to their thumbs.

Other larger-screened devices have demonstrated a similar feature, but usually any on-screen buttons have to be moved manually. If the Manta X7 can improve the user experience in a similar way intuitively, it could become a major selling point for the handset.

The phone also reportedly comes with touch sensitive panels on the its side, which can be used to adjust the volume.

The remainder of the phone’s specs are still unconfirmed at this point, but it is expected that the handset will run a modified version of Android designed by Manta itself.

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The device is also unlikely to see a release outside of the firm’s native China, but if the button-less approach proves successful, it might not be long until we see other manufacturers implementing similar features.

Image Credit: MTKSI

Barclay has been writing about technology for a decade, starting out as a freelancer with IT Pro Portal covering everything from London’s start-up scene to comparisons of the best cloud storage services.  After that, he spent some time as the managing editor of an online outlet focusing on cloud computing, furthering his interest in virtualization, Big Data, and the Internet of Things.