Sharp, the biggest (in terms of market share) of all eight major Japanese cell phone makers, has been talking about internationalizing its phone business for quite some time now. It makes sense, as the domestic market is shrinking and as Sharp only sold 20% of all their cell phones outside Japan (1.6 million units) last fiscal.
The company is specifically planning [press release in English] to export one of their cell phones powered by solar energy to China. The so-called SOLAR HYBRID SH6230C features a solar cell module, a 2.9-inch LCD screen and a 5MP auto-focus camera.
It’s the first solar-powered cell phone Sharp markets outside Japan. And while Chinese customers can lay their hands on the handset (available in blue or white, price: $500) as early as this February, Sharp says their solar phones may find their way into other global markets as well some day.