Softbank already rules the streets of Japan as the only carrier of the iPhone, now the company hopes to lock in the preschool and senior citizen market with what may be the simplest phone in the world.
The new handset was developed in conjunction with China's ZTE Corp. and features a single button used to automatically call parents or other emergency contacts when the child or elderly person needs immediate help. After the call the device automatically sends an email with GPS data pinpointing the person's location. In addition to the digital functions, the handset also features a speak-and-spell style string that emits an alarm when pulled, thus helping a responder locate the child or elderly person in need of help. Despite all these rudimentary features, the phone itself actually looks strikingly futuristic.