Leica just announced its own phone

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Leica is one of the most storied names in photography, and its red-dot logo is as recognisable as symbols come in that field, synonymous with both quality and price. It’s also increasingly been open to partnerships with smartphone makers in recent years.

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That’s seen its technology appear in Huawei’s top-line models in particular in recent times, lending some prestige to its photography chops. Things have taken an interesting turn now, though, in the form of a newly-announced, Japan-exclusive handset.

The Leica Leitz 1 is a phone that presents itself as 100% Leica, the branding front and centre rather than hiding somewhere in the background. Unsurprisingly, that does mean a superb-looking camera setup, featuring a 20MP one-inch sensor alongside a f/1.9 ultrawide lens for those wider shots.

The first of those is the biggest sensor a phone can get right now, so the results are likely to be impressive. Away from the camera, though, things get a little interesting. The design and specs of this phone are literally identical to the slightly older Sharp Aquos R6, and the camera module might have got a redesign but features the same components, too.

Just like the Aquos R6 you’ll get a nice 120Hz OLED display, then, although it doesn’t sport a fetching Leica lens cap, something that will again mark you out in the phone photography world. So, this one might be more about the branding than anything else, but if you’re a Leica fan that might be more than enough for you.

The price tag it’s got attached, at 187,920 yen (£1,250 or $1700) is also very much a challenge, but as we mentioned, that it slightly par for the course for Leica hardware.

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