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The strange Turing Phone is ditching Android after already taking preorders

The strange Turing Phone is ditching Android after already taking preorders


The phone will supposedly run Sailfish OS — if it ever ships at all

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When we first saw the Turing Phone seven months ago, it was touted as an ultra-secure Android smartphone constructed (partially) from liquid metal. Well as of today, only one of those things remains true. Turing Robotics Industries has sent out an email to customers who already preordered the company's phone with news that, when it ships in April — way later than first promised — it won't be running Android at all. In its place will be Sailfish OS, an operating system developed by ex-Nokia engineers under the company name Jolla.

That's some pretty terrible news. Jolla itself has struggled to actually ship products running its software, and only recently admitted that it's "still very tight financially and currently negotiating with its creditors for extended payment terms so that all the available financial resources could be efficiently used to secure the needed OS development." The company has completely abandoned plans to release the tablet it crowdfunded on Indiegogo two years ago.

Somehow Turing still thinks Sailfish OS a better option than going with Android. It's pretty hard to fathom, but that's the move Turing is making. "Sailfish OS runs exceptionally fast on the Turing," the company said in its email to preorder customers. "You will not have to worry about performance issues with Turing’s Snapdragon 801 because Sailfish OS has been optimized to run fast on your Turing Phone."

Turing justifies the bizarre switch by claiming that "the Turing Phone will still be able to run Android Apps on the Sailfish OS without issue. An Android application store will be available for you to download your favorite apps." Let me just remind you that this phone ranges in price between $610 (16GB) and $870 (128GB). And now, after delaying the device and failing to make good on another promise to ship in Q1, Turing believes that customers will get their money's worth with a second-rate Android experience running on a totally different operating system. Color us deeply skeptical, as you should be, too. If I had preordered this device, or even shown interest in purchasing it, I'd probably be trying to figure out how to cancel right about now.