How to pick a simple cell phone?
May 17, 2006 9:27 AM   Subscribe

I am tired of being connected and available all the time. To that end I have decided to drop my Treo PDA phone and just get a simple phone that will give me access to my calendar and contacts - but no email - no web - mobi-video - just plain old POTS. Any recommendations for simple cell phones?
posted by eaglemoon to Technology (16 answers total)
dibs on the treo! email in profile ;)

at my local Target (centerville, UT), they have TONS of pre-paid phones on clearance, usually in the $15-$50 range. Said pre-paid phones can usually be unlocked. Typically these are as close to POTS as you'll find. Also check 7-11 for clearance phones.
posted by neilkod at 9:30 AM on May 17, 2006

The Motorola Razr actually suits that need quite nicely. I keep my calendar and my contacts in there (Syncs very nicely with Mac, the PC sync app is only good if you use Outlook, and it's a bit buggy). It's lightweight and possible to have hours-long conversations on it without getting tired, and it's easy to use as Just A Phone(tm).

I actually have two phones, and because I have t-mobile service, I can just swap out the SIM card from my PDA phone into my Razr when I don't want the data service and/or don't want to carry the giant brick around.
posted by SpecialK at 9:42 AM on May 17, 2006

Why dont you just stop paying for data service on the Treo?
posted by omnidrew at 9:45 AM on May 17, 2006

I recently made a similar decision. Our provider is Verizon and after my research I decided to try the Motorola v325. It still has it's slew of add-ons, but it gets bonus points for having numerous reviews like this: "Dood this fone doesn't have enuff cool stuff, it's for old people!"

I'm not sure how you get access to your calendar and contacts... I don't do that. (It does have USB access, though.)

Selling points for me:

- Speakerphone
- Black and White External Display (can't stand those dim color ones)
- GPS Navigator (a VZ feature that unlike video casting or mp3 playing, I might could find use for on road trips)
- Lowest res camera phone out there (don't need it and don't want a flash eating up the battery) Does VZ even sell a phone w/o a camera these days?

It's okay, but nothing beats the phones (that are long beaten up and broken) from the mid-nineties IMO. They were basic and did a great job being a phone (and only that).

There's another post on MeFi about phones for the elderly that has some good low tech phone options.
posted by 10ch at 9:51 AM on May 17, 2006

I'll second the recommend on the V325. It has a very nice "phone" feel to it, but doesn't do anything else (besides 2D games) particularly well. In fact, it's camera is HORRIBLE, so you won't even be tempted to use that.

Nokia also sells some very simple candy-bar phones you might want to investigate.
posted by selfnoise at 9:55 AM on May 17, 2006

I second the RazR. Nice, thin phone w/ good speaker and reception but with features that are less sophisticated than my first Nokia so many years ago.
posted by gnash at 10:12 AM on May 17, 2006

Nokia 8260
posted by omidius at 10:22 AM on May 17, 2006

my LG VX8100 with BitPim does a decent job of managing my contacts and Calendar. BitPim is essential because you can import vCards and iCal files. The phone does have web stuff, but I don't have that service on my plan, and so can't use it.
posted by blue_beetle at 10:29 AM on May 17, 2006

I would recommend the PhoneScoop PhoneFinder utility.

Plug in your wants, your don't-wants and your carrier, and you're set to go.

Remember: the phones people are recommending above may not be available with all carriers!
posted by twiggy at 10:49 AM on May 17, 2006

I second omnidrew's suggestion. I love my Treo, and I think that, if I had to get a non-Internet phone, I'd drop my data plan. The contacts work out great, the calendaring works well, and, on top of all that, you've already got it.

An interesting alternative would be to get the cheapest phone you can, and (if you have one) use your iPod for contacts / calendar.
posted by fogster at 12:23 PM on May 17, 2006

The user interface on the Razr is beyond awful. Avoid.
posted by joeclark at 12:41 PM on May 17, 2006

I just got a Samsung A920 (Sprint) and love it.
posted by Taken Outtacontext at 1:51 PM on May 17, 2006

Just get some random Nokia off ebay
posted by cellphone at 2:31 PM on May 17, 2006

Keep the Treo and ditch the data plan. It's still nice to have a real keyboard!
posted by jewzilla at 3:22 PM on May 17, 2006

Instead of changing devices, why not change your behavior? You don't have to answer your phone/email/IMs/etc, you know. You should use your featuriffic phone as a convenience, not feel enslaved to it.
posted by me & my monkey at 4:05 PM on May 17, 2006

I curious to check out this one: PEBL - "less phone"
posted by boost ventilator at 7:47 PM on May 17, 2006

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