When we shop for a mobile phone these days most of us will probably look for a smartphone with a big shiny touch screen, and a bazillion apps ready to go from the app store. Carriers and mobile shops as well as the tech media are certainly helping this trend. Everybody talks about smartphones and everybody is trying to sell them, often as part of a relatively expensive two year contract.
So when we look at those old style small mobile phones with tiny keyboards, small screens, and relatively primitive interfaces they seem downright unfashionable, and indeed, dumb! It’s kind of funny how they’ve retroactively earned that title; dumbphone. You might remember thinking exactly the opposite when you were getting a new one back in the day. “Look at all those features! It’s practically a small computer, and it can even play real MP3 files!”. It seemed kinda.. smart!
But that’s how technology goes. Rapid advancement makes previously impressive gadgets look so funny in comparison. And yet, even in this day and age there is a lot to be said of the persisting advantages of these dumbphones, or “feature phones”, as they’re also known as. Many of them have to do with the tradeoffs that we have so willingly made and quickly forgotten in our rush towards smartphones.
So here are 10 ways in which a simple cheap dumbphone can sometimes be a smarter choice than a smartphone.
1. Battery Life
Remember the time your phone battery lasted for more than a day, sometimes almost an entire week? Then you bought a smartphone and had to learn a habit of charging your phone pretty much every night.
This is probably the biggest advantage of a dumbphone. Compared to smartphones it seems to last forever! You can forget to charge it before you go off on a day trip and still have a great chance of it surviving all the way through.
This isn’t because their batteries are so much better because they’re not. It’s simply down to the fact that they spend far less energy. The small screen is incredibly power efficient, and they don’t have powerful processors running fancy apps to drain their battery juice. So they can do much less than a typical smartphone, but you’ve got a phone that is useful as a phone for much longer on a single charge.