An environmentally-friendly mobile phone debuted in Japan, which is now enjoying an "eco boom." It is Sharp Corp's "Solar Phone SH002" released by KDDI Corp. as one of its summer 2009 models of the au brand mobile phones.

The SH002 is equipped with a solar cell module on the back of its chassis, which can be used as an auxiliary power source when the remaining battery level is low or at zero. Though Samsung Electronics Co. Ltd. and LG Electronics Inc. announced handsets with similar concepts at Mobile World Congress 2009, which took place in February 2009, Sharp is the first company that released such a product in Japan.

According to KDDI, the official release date of the SH002 is June 4, 2009, but the date differs depending on region. Just in case, we checked with the nearest outlet store for au handsets and received an answer that the SH002 will be launched in Tokyo on June 5 but only nine units (three units for each of three colors) will be available at the shop.

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Photo of the SH002 via Tech-On!