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What a find: An eco-friendly smartphone with vegan leather

By KATHY MORAN, The Philippine STAR Published Aug 01, 2020 8:42 am

One of the first aspects of the Oppo Find X2 Pro that caught my attention was that the phone has a back cover of orange vegan leather.

Curious about the choice of vegan leather, I learned “the vegan leather edition Oppo Find X2 Pro adopts top-grade environmentally friendly material, with a delicate and soft touch as well as a fashionable color, which is visually appealing and a delight to hold,” says Yuxian Lin, the Oppo Find X2 Pro designer. “Its premium-quality design, which adopts the highest quality control production in the electronics industry, is waterproof, oil-proof, and resistant to high temperatures, humidity, as well as general wear-and-tear.”

I wondered how Lin got into such a complex design for the Find X2 Pro. I found out his approach embodies Oppo’s commitment as a user-centric brand where function meets aesthetics. As Oppo’s industrial designer, Lin has already gained a well-rounded experience from entry to mid-range product lines for Oppo.

Vegan leather is in

The quality and durability of the materials that go into making the body of a cellphone are important. I learned that vegan leather is often a lot thinner than real leather and much more lightweight, which is great for fashion as it makes it potentially easier to work with. Vegetarians refer to vegan leather made of polyurethane plastic as "pleather."

Italian-based furniture brand Cassina found inspiration in bio-based waste while collaborating with French designer Philippe Starck. They upholstered the Volage EX-S sofa, Privè collection, and the Caprice + Passion chairs with Apple Ten Lork.

New types of vegan leather are constantly coming to market. French footwear brand Veja launched cruelty-free sneakers made from corn leather, made from 50 percent corn waste left over from the food industry.

New innovations are always coming to market as technology improves and more seek to make their lifestyle cruelty-free.

Stella McCartney introduced the world to the very first vegan Adidas Stan Smith — a milestone for everyone involved and especially those looking to get into the sneaker game without harming animals.

Did you know that there are vegan leather sneakers? Stella McCartney partnered with Adidas to launch vegan Stan Smith shoes.

German brand Nat-2 makes vegan-leather sneakers from coffee grounds and mushrooms. Luxury shoe brand Veja made sneakers from corn leather. And there is also Brooklyn-based ethical vegan label Brave GentleMan, which makes vegan leather belts in addition to shoes. Hunger Games actor Liam Hemsworth rocked one on the red carpet.

As more people opt to make their wardrobe cruelty-free, even furniture companies are beginning to launch vegan-leather home decor.

Vegetarian French designer Philippe Starck also makes vegan leather furniture using waste from the apple industry. Called Apple Ten Lork, the innovative textile uses the fruit’s cores and skins. It’s manufactured by Italian firm Frumat, which upcycles biological waste into eco-friendly products.

Car companies are also going into vegan leather, which used to be unheard of in the past. Animal-free interiors are becoming increasingly popular as more consumers demand sustainable, vegan alternatives.

Electric car brand Tesla uses vegan leather for its vehicles. Other companies have followed its lead. Audi makes an electric SUV with animal-free seating. BMW unveiled its electric SUV, complete with a vegan-leather interior. Nissan’s newest electric vehicle is also friendly towards the planet and animals. Volvo’s new Polestar has a vegan interior as well.

Just knowing that no animals are harmed in making vegan leather makes all the difference to me.

What you'll find in the Find X2 Pro 

I study the Oppo Find X2 Pro closely, and though I don't notice the technical aspects at first glance, I am in awe at the beauty and feel of this orange phone and the smoothness of the vegan leather.

We all know that perhaps 50 percent of the beauty of a cellphone is in the eyes of the beholder (at least, as far as I am concerned). The other 50 concerns how well the phone functions.

Like, can it take good photos? Does it keep connections well? Are there dropped calls and stuff like that? More so nowadays, our phones have become 50 percent of our lives. With a good cellphone we are able to keep in touch with people who matter, yet maintain social distancing and don’t have to use a mask.

Oppo is committed to creating a better smartphone experience centered on user needs. “Find X2 Series is designed for the ultimate experience that pleasures the consumer’s senses, from visually pleasing for the eyes to texture for the fingertips,” adds Lin.

And, using leather on the Oppo Find X2 Pro is a way of giving a premium feel to a flagship product. Another advantage of leather is that it can prevent fingerprints.  Its trendy orange hue gives off the same vibe as a luxury designer product, helping any user stand out in a crowd.

But, beyond the vegan leather, what else does the Oppo Find X2 Pro have to offer?

Here are features you won’t want to say hello without:

Oppo strives to provide consumers with the strongest level of protection while offering high-end design styles. The Oppo Find X2 Pro is equipped with IP68 protection: not only can it withstand daily splashes and spills, users can also bring it with them on outdoor adventures.

It’s the first to expand consumers’ usage scenarios and enhance their experience. Lin said that, based on user’s feedback, they’d still like to use their device when exposed to water. With IP68, users can keep using their Find X2 Pro on occasions such as going to the beach, swimming pool, and boating, which can ease their worries about water damaging the smartphone.

It aims to provide the best screen experience. Lin decided to utilize a flexible light guide to hide the front color sensor under an extremely narrow gap, which the Find X2 Pro is the first in industry to use. “This is an excellent solution to place a color sensor in the front without losing any screen space,” he says. “Based on in-depth pre-research in the early stage, we collaborated with many departments such as structure team, product team, engineering team, procurement team, and display team."

Find X2 Pro adopts the largest X-axis motor in Android phones on the market, providing responsive and comfortable vibrations. Using keyboards, calculators, compasses, and other applications with sound effects becomes a very pleasant experience.

The Find X2 Pro pays more attention to users’ experience and practical needs, including water and dust resistance, imaging and other performance tasks. Besides, based on user demand for large-screen mobile phones, Oppo offers one of the best screen experiences in the industry. It is an industry-leading, all-around powerful flagship.

So, with all of the cell phones on the market today, Oppo is a choice that must not be overlooked. Find X is Oppo’s flagship series, which carries the brand’s most advanced current technology, as well as R&D achievements.

Technology is the new normal — yes, let's get hi-tech with Oppo.