• Kodak Ektra camera smartphone.

Kodak Ektra camera smartphone. (Photo : Kodak)

It's a camera-smartphone and not a smartphone with a camera, and this description is an apt description for Kodak's new but retro smartphone, the Kodak Ektra.

Dressed in leatherette, big and thick, the Ektra features a huge 21 megapixel rear facing camera. And, as can be expected, this huge lens protruding from the camera looks every bit like a traditional camera lens people associate with classic cameras. In contrast, the Apple iPhone 7's camera is a puny 12 MP.

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To further the links to its camera roots, the Kodak Ektra features a classic shutter button to trigger the lens. No more swiping the touchscreen to take photos.

The Kodak Ektra carries a sticker price of $551 and runs Android 6.0 Marshmallow out of the box. It will likely support 7.0 Nougat.

The phone uses an on-screen dial similar to that in a single-lens reflex (SLR) camera. Users can manually adjust the settings, including exposure, white balance and shutter speed.

All in all, the Kodak Ektra is truly a "smartphone" built around a camera and Kodak CEO Jeff Clarke agrees.

"This is a phone that really emphasizes the camera ... as opposed to a phone that happens to have a camera with it," said Clarke.

"It's very intuitive, it will be a real hit for people today carry around or use traditional digital cameras. It's going to bring that device to your phone. Nothing out there does that today."

Clarke also justified the camera first concept of the Kodak Ektra as going back to Kodak's century old roots. He noted Kodak "wanted to refresh product line" and that "having an exceptional camera is a market people will want."

A mix of mid-range and high-end components lies under the hood. Powering the phone is a deca-core MediaTek Helio X20 processor and 3GB of RAM.

Ektra comes with 32 GB of internal storage that can be supplemented with a MicroSD card up to 128 GB. Its 3000mAh battery supports "Pump Express" quick charging. It's got a 5-inch, 1080p display.