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RED’s holographic Hydrogen One phone gets even closer to release with FCC approval

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Will RED hit its promised August release date?

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Photo: Dieter Bohn / The Verge

RED’s upcoming Hydrogen One smartphone still doesn’t have a concrete release date, but we’re presumably getting even closer to launch, given that the phone has cleared the FCC’s approval process this week, via PhoneScoop.

In addition to confirming that the Hydrogen One is in fact a real device that RED will legally be allowed to sell in the United States, the FCC filing confirms a few smaller details about the phone: it’ll have a 4,510mAh battery, dual SIM slots, and support for all US LTE bands (except T-Mobile’s Band 71).

The Hydrogen One was originally announced over a year ago when RED offered preorders for both a $1,195 aluminum version and a $1,595 titanium variant (although that preorder period has long closed), and RED has yet to announce what the final retail price will be. The phone itself was originally slated to release in early 2018, but a series of delays have pushed it to to an August release date, although RED founder Jim Jannard recently announced on the company’s forums that issues in the certification process have pushed back that window again, to an unspecified time (as spotted by Studio Daily). That said, both AT&T and Verizon pledging to offer the device whenever it does launch (AT&T’s page now claims a fall 2018 release window.)

RED is pinning two unique features on the Hydrogen One to help it stand out from a field of other pricey smartphones: first, there’s an attachment system that will let the Hydrogen One serve as the center for a larger, modular camera setup. So far, there’s only one such module announced, though — an 8K, 3D camera attachment developed with camera company Lucid.

The other notable feature on the Hydrogen One is the 5.7-inch “holographic display” that will utilize RED’s new 4-View video format to create a 3D effect without the need for glasses. While it’s almost impossible to gauge how well that works without seeing the phone in person, my colleague Dieter Bohn was able to do just that at a RED preview event earlier this year, describing the effect as “impressive,” although not necessarily a reason to go out and buy the phone.

Update August 1st, 5:10pm: Added details of further delays as announced by RED founder Jim Jannard in RED’s forums.