Earlier this month, US startup Nextbit unveiled the Robin: a smartphone built by former Android and HTC employees that uses the power of the cloud to ensure it never runs out of storage. The company took to Kickstarter to sell the device directly to consumers, and has since racked up more than $1 million in sales — double its original funding goal. In response to backers' requests, Nextbit is now offering a version of the Robin that will work on Verizon's network in the US. The CDMA handset will go on sale today at 10AM PT, with the first 300 devices selling for $299, and then $349 thereafter. Backers who have already ordered a Robin can specify if they want the CDMA version or GSM (which works on AT&T and T-Mobile) after the campaign has finished.
Nextbit's big sell may be seamless cloud storage that automatically moves content off your phone when you're running out of space, but the company also wants to impress with its design. The Robin's square silhouette and almost spartan look might not appeal to everyone, but it certainly stands out from other, rounder, mid-range handsets. And so, as well as launching Verizon-compatible phones, the company also announced yesterday that it's holding a competition to find a new color for the Robin, which is currently only available in shades labelled Midnight and Mint. Anyone can submit photoshopped or even hand-drawn suggestions, with the winner chosen by public vote from five finalists at the end of this month.