I want a not-so-smart phone.

I’m getting to a point where I would trade all the bells and whistles of these “smart” phones for some seriously long battery life. I’m on a computer all day long, I have a big beautiful plasma TV to watch movies on, and a really nice camera if I want to snap a few shots of the kid. Do I really need all these battery sucking options on my phone? The only time I use them is for killing boredom while standing in line or waiting for my wife to try on clothes. A paperback book would suffice.

I feel like I play a never ending game of “battery bars” where I’m always losing. My ancient cell phones used to last for DAYS! God forbid I get an important call in the middle of the night, because chances are my current phone is dead as a door nail, since I don’t ALWAYS remember to plug it in at night.

Is anyone feeling me? Would you prefer a phone that was an awesome PHONE, with lots of range, clarity and battery life? A couple simple features like a phone book is fine. I just want it to live for a week without being tied to a wall.

I just want it to live for a week without being tied to a wall.

Feels more like a leash, to me… .

Totally feeling you, did the same thing.

I was a smartphone geek; snatched up the G1 on preorder and so on. The battery life was a contributing factor, but I had just finished reading Walden and I was (and still am) on a mission to simplify my personal life.

Anyway, I looked at the Nokia C1 series. The C1-00 was sexy with about 6 weeks standby, but it only worked on GSM network in india.

The C1-01 works on USA GSM networkwith about 3 week standby. It’s also durable as hell (nokia brick) and costs $50.

I can live without apps, but its pretty useful to always be connected to the internet on my smartphone. Im curious as to where all the battery life goes to, is it the large screens or the multitude of apps running on your phone, or is it always having 3G or Wifi on? I had a Nokia N82 before my current smartphone, i used to surf the web with it using wifi, even still my phone lasted me a good 3 days.

I’m on a similar page. I have two smart phones, and have used smart phones for about nine years, ( Orange SPV ) since getting a tablet, I use none, zero, of the smart functions of the phone. It is all clutter. What I need next is a cool base function phone. I find that physical phone size matters, like watches, it has to be big.

Smartphones are over for me.

That is an interesting point nxackt, btw which tablet are you using?
I agree, most smart functions on my phone are indeed clutter, aside from the basic browser, im, and map apps, I really have no need for the rest. However, these clutter of apps are definitely more user friendly since it is optimized for mobile, which I see as the main benefit for apps.

Nxackt, werent feature phones = cool base function phones?

I early adopted into ipad1. Feature phone definition is maybe closer. What i need in a phone is voice, messaging, clock, alarm, camera, good battery, worldwide compatibility, and ownership status.

I can see the appeal of more battery, slimmer, sleeker, etc. but I can’t imagine not having the basics of email and internet at the very least. I could likely do without apps, maybe the camera (though maybe not, as the best camera is the one you have on you), and maybe a few other features, though the more I think of it there are more must haves than I initially would think, ie. maps/GPS, music, etc…

I work from my loft so am in most days, yet when I’m out I need to be connected. iPad is great on the sofa or in bed, but I’m not lugging it around every day (though it has made travel a breeze, I don’t carry a laptop anymore).

I don’t actually really notice it so much until I travel and have my data turned off. I feel lost. Worst was a trip to Germany recently where the hotel had no wifi and I couldn’t even find a single place in town that had some for free. I was unconnected for 3 days and it felt crazy.

I am an early adopter (got the first iPhone in the US when it wasn’t here in Canada, drove to the US to get the 1 gen iPad, etc.), but also miss my old Samsung (edge series?) that was maybe 6mm thick. It was just there and had two swappable batteries, decent camera with video, etc.

Maybe nostalgic, but also miss the old Nokia bricks from 10+ years ago. Lasted forever, texting was the latest thing and could be dropped off a building and survive.

Nah, scratch all that. I still want me the latest iPhone.


The network providers in Germany all sell prepay cards, about 25 euros for a month. You need your passport in hand to get one. I have a punch that turns the normal SIM into microSim, but some providers sell the micros. Tell them you want the data plan for the iPad and you are all set. Don’t arrive on Sunday, nothing is open…

Getting flipped into a urinal…

I cannot, will not look at the internet on a screen smaller than 7 inches.

I’ve done the euro pre pays. But doesn’t make much sense for a 2-3 day trip. Plus afaik. Data not incl.


Mine from O2 was 1 or 2 GB of data over the month. Given my current data/connection/omninetwork addiction it seemed a small price to pay. If you purchase one refill the card gets extended to six months validity.

A tip on remembering to charge every night: get a good dock and place it by your bed. It’s so much more convenient to take the phone out of your pocket and drop it in the dock when you go to bed, than having to fiddle with a cable. And if you see an empty dock it functions as a reminder to find the phone and put it in its place. Seriously, it works.

I agree with R, I need to be connected all the time. I’ve moved to IM (google talk) to replace text messaging, use maps quite often to find clients’ office or a shop or bar (just look up directions roughly and rely on the phone for the rest). +email and killing-time-stuff. QR codes getting ubiquitous. So nah, smartphone stays in my pocket.

All in all, I had to double check if this thread was recent and not started ~2007. The point that tablets replace the smartphone is new, albeit one I don’t agree with. I find that smartphones are for communication, navigation, and to some degree information. Where’s a tablet is for entertainment, information, and to some degree productivity. But I guess it depends on your way of life, if you travel a lot, bring a bag everywhere etc…

BTW @cdaisy: funny you said that it lasted for DAYS. The dumbphone I have now - $50 Nokia - has a standby of one month. I find that I run out of battery more often on that one because I think I never have to charge it. Compared to the smartphone I charge every day.

I like the Nokia C1 too. Very cheap.

Don’t forget the Motorola Fone F3

Sounds like a good idea, yet here I am dropping more money on a band aid fix. Plus the biggest hassle is usually when I travel.

I know a lot of people won’t want to give up the features of an iphone, but I would place a bet that there is a market for a stripped down version of these phones that are less clutter, higher performance (like a sports car). You could still have a handful of useful features including the web, but I’m never going to watch Iron Man on a 4 inch screen, and while it is nice to see an actual website instead of a mobile version, I don’t NEED it all that much.

Give me something durable, slim enough for my pocket and pump it full of juice. Make sure it looks cool too.

Or… wait for a super battery to be developed and forget everything I just said. :laughing:

I used to use the Nokia 7280 for 3 years, then replaced it with the 7380 for another year.

The battery was small though so not the best battery life. If it has a better texting feature I’d be using it again but it takes forever to text on it. Besides that, it’s super small…any other phone I use seems big. I can’t even imaging lugging an iPhone everywhere because of its size. Funny when people 1st see my phone they think it’s some future phone, then I tell them it’s been out of production for 5 years already :laughing: Most people don’t even know how to dial on them, I told them it’s like a rotary phone, turn the wheel to select.

Ya, so for me, size is important. But that has its drawback as well: small size = small battery

I’ve never seen those Nokia 7280s. Wild stuff! I sorta miss my old Motorola Razr. If there was an easier way to text on it I would love a thin clamshell design again. You never pocket dialed or accidentally answered a call you didn’t want on those models.

I also miss real buttons. I have a hard time ending a call or turning on the speaker when it’s sunny out and I’m driving.

Its a simple, rugged, brick of a phone, but hands down the best phone I ever had:

I have a hard time ending a call or turning on the speaker when it’s sunny out and I’m driving.

when you’re driving!?.. bad toad. :wink:

I’ve had email on my phone for a long time having had 3 Blackberries and 2 iPhones at this point. I could never go back, especially as a frequent traveler who has to stay connected to studios in multiple locations and with clients in different time zones. Email, web, calendar syncing, multimedia viewing is a must.

That said, I also believe the market is big enough (for now) for there still to be quality feature phones, but know that the number of people who’s primary and only access to the web and email is a smartphone is growing rapidly across the globe. There are not any indicators that will slow at this time. You can always mod an old phone :wink:


I bought a Bose Sound Dock years ago to sit on my nightstand, I never forget to charge because that thing is right there. It has become part of my behavior.

I was thinking about this last night flipping through some junk mail- all but one phone advertised in the prepaid/ outright section was a touchscreen smart phone or a candybar with a tiny querty keyboard.

No clamshells.

Last 3 favourite phones were Samsung clamshells- smaller than Iphone when folded, and unlike Iphone I wasnt paranoid about keys alongside it in my pocket, or my kids jumping on me and smashing it- it is really like having a brick in your pocket.

I also had an NEC N512- advertised as worlds thinnest phone. Terrible interface but it was like having a credit card phone.