I Love My “Dumb Phone”

June 23, 2010

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I love technology as much as the next person.  Yet, when it comes time to pick a cell phone, I always end up with the model that has the fewest features.  No “smart phone” for me.  Why?

  • Price – Those extra features cost money.  You pay more for the phone, and you pay more for data plans.  Honestly, I don’t spend a lot of “quality time” with my phone, so it’s really not worth the extra cost.  Seriously, I can wait until I get home to check Facebook.
  • Battery life – Those extra features also drain the battery.  My current phone will last about five days between charges.  Honestly, I’d sacrifice some features of the phone if I could squeeze an extra day or two out of the battery.

So, what do I look for in a cell phone, then?

  • Battery life – As mentioned above, I’m always concerned about battery life.  That’s the second thing I look for in the details about a phone (price being first).  If the battery life isn’t at least 100 hours on standby, I won’t consider the phone.
  • Incoming text messages – This is a pretty standard feature any more, but that wasn’t always the case in the past.  I keep up with sports and a few other things via 4Info’s free text messages.
  • A card game – Every now and then, I do find myself with time to kill and nothing but my cell phone to entertain me.  Blackjack is my favorite of the card games, but Poker works pretty well, too.  My current phone has a demo of a poker game.  It lets me play two hands before quitting.  That’s good enough for me, since I rarely play more than a half dozen hands at a time.  Despite not being an expert player, I somehow turned by starting bankroll of $1500 into $20,000.  I suspect that the computer players are really bad.
  • No flip phone – I absolutely hate flip phones.  I much prefer the “candy bar” style.  For the better part of a decade, I used a few different Kyocera models.  My current carrier doesn’t carry Kyocera, so I have a Samsung A-737.  The Samsung is a slider, which I don’t like as much as the candy bar phones, but prefer to the flip phones.

I’m frugal when it comes to my cell phone.  Here are a few more money saving tips.

  • Check for discounts – Nearly every national carrier provides discounts for my company’s empoyees.  The lone holdout seems to be US Cellular.  I actually prefer US Cellular’s service, but withouth the discount, they are a bit more expensive than most other companies.
  • Record your own ring tones – A lot of money is spent on downloaded ring tones every year.  But with the right software, you can easily record your own ring tones.  Take an MP3 and use something like Audacity to take out the best chunk of the song and use it as a ring tone.  I have a rather extensive collection of MP3 (legally obtained from my own CDs) and have created quite a few ringtones.  Currently, my ringtone is Runaway by Love and Theft, and my morning alarm is 1969 by Keith Stegall.  In the past, I’ve used Hello, Goodbye from The Beatles, for obvious reasons.
  • Buy accessories online – Whether it is a car charger or a carrying case (a holster, in my case), I buy accessories online.  You pay a fraction of the cost for an identical item.

5 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Evan @ 40Tech
    Jun 23, 2010 @ 08:35:55

    An interesting take. I guess it really is a personal thing. I spend at least a fair amount of time away from the PC, and while “need” might be a bit of a strong word, I find it is really helpful to keep in touch with the office, and just get things done, to have my iPhone. Of course, it helps that my employer pays for it. When I’m waiting for a meeting out of the office, I get caught up on email, clean up my to-do list, etc. And, of course, I also goof off with it, check in on Twitter and Facebook, etc. That helps my personal life, because if I use my down time during the day for that (time that might otherwise be unproductive), then I have more time with my wife in the evening.

    The battery thing is usually a non-issue for me. I keep the charger by my nightstand, so as long as the phone gets me from the time I unplug it in the morning, until the time I lay down at night, I don’t need multiple days out of one charge.
    .-= Evan @ 40Tech´s last blog ..My Experience Using a Fitness Ball as My Office Chair =-.


  2. poch
    Jun 24, 2010 @ 05:07:29

    And I thought I’m the only one who loves a dumb phone lol
    My dumb phone could carry on more than an hour of talk without problems. How’s that for dumb?


  3. Martin Kelly
    Jun 24, 2010 @ 09:25:11

    So if I am nubmer 3 for dumb phones, is this a movement?

    I’m right with you Kosmo. Cost, Battery Life, Reilaibility.
    It is just a phone after all, not a pet.

    I, however, like the flip phone since it fits in my pocket better.


  4. Prasenjit
    Aug 04, 2013 @ 11:53:39

    I am, be well said, that jumped the bandwagon of dumb phone lovers. It seems like a sort of movement. I use a Nokia candy bar, going against the grain, swimming against the smart phone craze.


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