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The mobile, or cell, phone has had a meteoric rise from being an interesting and expensive concept to an essential and affordable necessity. The first commercially-available handset, the DynaTAC 8000x (not quite as catchy a name as ‘iPhone’) was released in 1983 and cost just a shade under $4,000. Bargain.

In the almost-30 years since then phones have changed by a massive amount, with bricks being replaced by slimline affairs (and then big being considered beautiful once again) and an age of simplicity being replaced by an age where your phone is smarter than you. Which prompts me to wonder which era of mobile phones did you enjoy the most…?

This Week’s Question…

What Is The Best Phone You Have Ever Owned, & Why?

We want to know what the best phone you have ever owned is, and why that phone captured your heart. It could be that your first mobile changed your life, giving you freedom to communicate on the go. Maybe you preferred the feature phones 10 Apps To Make Your Old Windows Mobile Phone Useful 10 Apps To Make Your Old Windows Mobile Phone Useful The other night, I stumbled upon my old Windows Mobile phone. Why do I have this great device stashed away in a drawer, when it could be put to good use? Even though there's no... Read More of decades past, which focused solely on making and receiving calls.

Or you can tell us why you have switched to a smartphone, why you made the choice that you did, and which operating system/handset manufacturer you went with. I’m already expecting a slew of “iPhone FTW!”-style comments, but please try adding a little meat to the bones and tell us why the iPhone is the best thing since sliced bread. Or why it blows compared to Android and/or Windows Phone 10 Reasons To Buy Windows Phone 7 [Opinion] 10 Reasons To Buy Windows Phone 7 [Opinion] The usual wisdom coming from salesmen and the “experts” among your friends is that Android or iPhone are the way to go, especially with the current decline of BlackBerry. However, a third choice is becoming... Read More .

All comments will be digested to form conclusions in a follow-up post next week.

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We Ask [You] Tell Us‘ is a weekly column dedicated to finding out the opinions of MakeUseOf readers. We ask you a question and you tell us what you think. The question is open-ended and is usually open to debate. Some questions will be purely opinion-based, while others will see you sharing tips and advice, or advocating tools and apps for your fellow MakeUseOf Readers. This column is nothing without you, as MakeUseOf social media obsession with anonymity social media obsession with anonymity Read More is nothing without you.

Image Credit: Harsh Agrawal

  1. Varun Jain
    August 25, 2012 at 9:33 pm

    I've been a Nokia fan throughout my life!

    My Phone History -

    2005 - Panasonic GD-92 ( I loved how it could record two phone calls. :P)
    2006 - Nokia 3120 ( I loved playing Snakes)
    2007 - Nokia N72 ( Oh how much I loved this phone, I felt like a superhero, amazing tech, much-much-much ahead of its time, Snakes again!)
    2010 - Nokia E63 ( I lost it in two weeks. :()
    2010 - Micromax Q5 (Basic Java phone, not worth mentioning)
    2011 - Nokia E5 ( And i love this even more than I loved my N72)

    Things I do with my E5-

    1) Whatsapp - The basic need these days.
    2) Hotspot - I can turn my phone into a hotspot, older Android phones couldn't. I can then use any phone/laptop to connect to this hotspot (except Blackberry, they suck)
    3) GPS/Google Maps - Realtime location of your contacts. :D
    4) Networking - Use my phone as a computer connected on my home network. Access all the files on the network, plus access all my phone's files via my laptop, no need of wires, no bluetooth, everything on high speed wifi, range- entire home, that means, i've unrestricted access to everything stored on my laptop all over my place. So as to say, I use my laptop's 500gb HD as if it were my phone's. :D
    5) Threaded Texting - Because some people complain Nokia doesn't support this, :P
    6) Remote Control Laptop - I love this, remote control your laptop via wifi, resume/pause torrents and much much more.
    7) Record all my calls, outgoing as well as incoming WITHOUT THE BEEP SOUND.
    8) Dropbox sync, access to all my files anywhere, anytime.
    9) SKYPE! Free VOIP Calls! Although it doesn't have a front-cam, but then also, voice is enough for me, :P
    10) I used to use my phone as an ip-cam, it works, but I don't use it anymore.

    Basic Features like Office/PDF/Dictionary toh hai hi.

    Finally I've customized my screen to look like an HTC device, with live weather updates. Wish I could attach a screenshot of my homescreen here. :P

    Will use it till it wears off because I don't like touchscreen devices, but my next update will be a Nokia Lumia with Windows Phone 8. :D

    I agree the number of apps on both symbian as well as windows phone is very limited, but it doesn't bother me, the device should work for me.

  2. Riya
    April 12, 2012 at 4:24 pm

    Android vs. iPhone vs. Windows Phone 7 - Polls & Voting - TechDiscussion

  3. Tez
    April 12, 2012 at 12:11 am

    Well has to be my 3310 I still own and use it now just ordered a new battery for it as its starting to lose charge. Brought this phone way back in 2001 to replace my old Alcatel one touch (awful phone) and its been with me ever since. I don't need a phone to check emails on I have a laptop for all those sorts of things. My friends used to tease me about sticking with the phone but it does what I ask of it, sure i'd love it to be able to hold more than 20sms's but its no big deal I just delete them once its full. It amazes me of the looks I get when I go shopping when it beeps with its mono ringtones everybody looks and actually smiles when I get it out. The friends that used to tease me now call it retro and cool again. Dont get me wrong I think all the smartphones are brilliant and I love the Iphone 4s but its just not what I need from a phone plus its damned expensive to buy! I'll stick with this phone untill it dies or when it no longer accepts my sim card.

    • Dave Parrack
      April 12, 2012 at 11:44 am

      Good for you. I'd say there is definitely an element of retro cool there :)

      If it's working for you then that's all that matters. I miss the old ringtones!

    • james
      April 28, 2012 at 2:40 pm

      I still use my 3410 (only as back up), got a spare battery and charger cheaply of amazon it still works well.

    • Lin Jun Lee
      July 19, 2016 at 4:17 am

      Would you buy the new Android Powered Alcatel OneTouch?

  4. ali
    April 1, 2012 at 7:46 pm

    my best phone ever is the HTC ONE X i used it today its super ultra fast in everything
    and it has got the best camera ever made it shot's 5 photos in 1sec
    its the best phone in the world to day // alot beter than iphone 4s and galaxy s2 and all NOKIA phones .
    HTC roooooockssssssssssssss

    • Dave Parrack
      April 12, 2012 at 11:43 am

      HTC has gone back to the drawing board and started over. And I must say I'm impressed with the One X and and One S.

  5. Humza Aamir
    March 25, 2012 at 12:27 pm

    The best phone I've owned and still own is the Sony Ericsson Xperia Arc S, the design is lovely, not the usual square, etcher sketch of a thing. Its a single core affair but that doesn't concern me as long as it keeps stuff rolling smoothly. The only fact that bothers me about it is the lack of attention it got. The recent brand name change to Sony is not going to improve matters either but put it in further oblivion.

    • Dave Parrack
      April 12, 2012 at 11:41 am

      The Arc S is a nice-looking phone. Have fun with it :)

  6. MozillaMan
    March 18, 2012 at 9:39 pm

    Samsung Galaxy Note. Best phone I've ever used.

    • Dave Parrack
      March 18, 2012 at 9:57 pm

      But is it a phone or a tablet? Or a little of both?

  7. Aaron Couch
    March 15, 2012 at 3:10 pm

    LG Lotus (first one)

    It isn't a smartphone, but it had a great battery life, good durability, impressive photo quality for its age. In fact it never "broke," I just couldn't take it with me when I switched carriers.

  8. Cocoablini
    March 15, 2012 at 5:27 am

    Sidekick LX. Easy

  9. Randy Pencin
    March 15, 2012 at 5:00 am

    I liked the Sidekick 2 and the Sidekick Slide, the latter for it's battery life.  Yes, the browser was barely usable and yes there were just a tiny selection of apps, but the call quallity in the SF bay area was incredible on the Sidekick 2.  And I loved the keyboard and responsiveness of the UI.  I type want and that's that.  No mashing of keys and endless autotext suggestions of what I could have possibly meant.

    I should probably add that when I had those phones, I worked for Danger, with fantastic colleagues -- it was something special.

    • Dave Parrack
      March 18, 2012 at 10:16 pm

      Thanks for commenting, Randy. Can I ask what phone you have now?

  10. Keith Collyer
    March 14, 2012 at 9:02 pm

    Nokia 6310. Best PHONE
    Of course, if you are talking about gadgets that make phone calls, then...

    • Dave Parrack
      March 18, 2012 at 10:02 pm

      Feature phones and smartphones, they all count.

  11. Varun
    March 14, 2012 at 4:15 pm

    I have had only an s40 from Nokia.. Its the best i owned due to financial reasons..

    • Dave Parrack
      March 18, 2012 at 10:01 pm

      You're far from alone in making a phone choice based on your financial situation. Thanks for commenting.

  12. Priit
    March 14, 2012 at 2:44 pm

    HTC Artemis - it is still working - wifi, gps, calendar, todo lists- all i need. Highly Customizable. Creat for note taking. (Bad camera - but i dont need it). Works great with my car through Bluetooth - calls and audio. Synsc my pc calndars and etc.

    • Dave Parrack
      March 18, 2012 at 9:58 pm

      If a phone has all you need then I'd say that's a good match :)

  13. Prateek
    March 13, 2012 at 8:15 pm

    I have a Nokia Lumia 710 and I love it more than anything else I owned. The windows phone os is so refreshing and intuitive to use so it keeps me gripped. The user interface is amazing and its fast n zippy. The only thing it needs badly is an Instagram app :P

    • Dave Parrack
      March 14, 2012 at 12:25 am

      You may be the first to mention Windows Phone 7 on here, Prateek. I like the look of it, but the lack of apps is a turn-off. Judging by how long Instagram is taking to come to Android I wouldn't hold your breath ;)

  14. Bill
    March 13, 2012 at 10:00 am

    Nokia 6230i fantastic phone nice size and weight no frills still works well after 7 years and battery still holds charge.

  15. Harshal Desai
    March 13, 2012 at 5:53 am

    I would say one of the old nokia phones from back in the day, they were built like bricks...I'd throw them around and they'd work just fine....but now.....Iphone 4s all the way, my first iphone and I absolutely love it...always wanted one but could never afford it but now I can and I love it, there's so much you can do on it and it's so easy to use and the retina display is mindblowing and also the hd recording and the camera is pretty cool aswell, although the zoom sucks...

    • Dave Parrack
      March 14, 2012 at 12:24 am

      The only problem with the iPhone is the insatiable desire to upgrade each year ;)

  16. Nkitt Dirtybit
    March 13, 2012 at 4:29 am

    blackberry bold 9780, the bestest and awesomest overall

    • Dave Parrack
      March 14, 2012 at 12:23 am

      Blackberry gets a lot of hate but I know a few people who were perfectly happy with theirs. They still eventually switched to iOS or Android though.

      • Aurumgirl
        May 2, 2012 at 3:47 pm

        All blackberry would have to do is come up with better access to the internet (faster, at least, and far more dependable) and figure out how to make a phone with a larger and clearer screen. Blackberry should change nothing about its security, it's keyboards, its messaging/emailing/texting systems, and its functionality for business and just figure out how to offer everything the touchscreen phones offer on top of what they've got. I switched over from a blackberry to a samsung galaxy about two months ago, and man am I missing my ability to actually communicate with this phone. The touchscreen keypad is NOT FOR WRITERS. If you're going to text/email/message in Princespeak (UR 2 Gud 2 B 4 gotten), fine; but I used to use my blackberry as a writing instrument in my work. I needed better and more reliable access to the net for information and research (which I get easily enough on the Samsung) but writing on this thing is just depressing. I also miss getting my email instantly. I'm hoping that by the time my contract runs out, blackberry will have picked themselves up by the bootstraps so I can see what they've got on offer. The end of the touchscreen keypad cannot come soon enough for me.

  17. Chris
    March 13, 2012 at 3:52 am

    The original black Motorolla (the one after the huge one with the fat battery). It always worked, never hung up, re-booted, froze on you when you need it most.

    Smart phone would be great if the worked like a phone should, too much focus on apps. and dumb stuff for children than the phone actually working when you need it.

    • Dave Parrack
      March 14, 2012 at 12:22 am

      Someone really should make a smartphone with the focus on the actual calling aspect. It would sell well!

  18. Morris Shasho
    March 12, 2012 at 6:24 pm

    The Droid Incredible OG definitely 

  19. Bill
    March 12, 2012 at 5:29 pm

    Laugh as you may, I am rather happy with my nearly three-year-old Samsung SCH-u430 'flip phone'. It's running with the original battery, which I have occasionally swapped for recharging purposes with an identical one from an earlier incarnation of the phone style. I'm a reluctant user, so not having the phone splayed open, flashing and making for noises for 12 hours a day may be partly responsible for the battery's longevity.

    In all honesty, a phone like this can still meet the needs -- not to be confused with expectations -- of most people. It offers basic mobile web connectivity, has a standard-grade camera, VZ Navigator GPS, and offers a host of other useful features which I never use. I should be making Geico commercials, TechnoTrog™ as I am.

    Samsung has earned its prominence in the market, and that's essentially the result of progressive little victories with innovative product introductions and successions. After all, Smartphones weren't delivered to the World's doorstep by the Stork.

    I've mused about getting an Epic 4G, partly because I adore Samsung as much as a Geek-poser can love a tech manufacturer. Still, suffice it to say that the myriad provider and plan options, long-term contract obligations, along with known and potential problems collectively keep my virtual tin-can-on-a-string looking as attractive as it did the day I parted with $150 for it at a Go-Wireless store. 

    I recently entertained the idea of acquiring the Epic 4G with the grand, surreptitious intention of rooting it and using it as a wireless hub for Internet service at home. I wanted to 'Frankenstein' it into the omnipotent tool that the hype whispered in my ear about Smartphones promises that it can be. The potential pitfalls I've alluded to, along with the basic matter of expense and an admonishment from a friend who is an 'IT Computer Genius Pro' will keep a Smartphone out of my clutches for a while yet. So will the fact that this phone works perfectly well as, of all things, a phone.

    I've been telling my nephews who are in varying stages of activity and hiatus as they assess college and the post-graduation landscape that there's something to be said for living simply. For the most part, the thrill of merely but miraculously being connected when necessary has been enough to keep me satisfied with a non-trendy squawk box for a long time.

    I've had a few phones, each of which I liked for their own virtues, so an absolute favorite would be tough to appoint. Almost three years on, this one's a keeper of which I've grown fond. It's just fine, simple as that.

    • Dave Parrack
      March 14, 2012 at 12:21 am

      Great comment, Bill. Thank you. Stick with the phone that works for you, seriously. Everyone has different needs and the Samsung fits yours perfectly.

  20. as005
    March 11, 2012 at 3:34 pm

    I-Mate JAQ : A strong windows phone, still works. :D

  21. George
    March 10, 2012 at 11:07 am

    Nokia E51 got it in 2008, still using although I have an iPhone 4 and an android 4 device. I like true multitasking, perfect contraol of hardware resources, working blacklist and recording applications, free office app, excelent reception and many more

  22. gattaga
    March 10, 2012 at 12:08 am

    Nokia E75..
    has all the features i want(personally not a big fan of touchscreen phone)
    and its built like a brick..

  23. smartguy05
    March 9, 2012 at 6:20 pm

    Galaxy Nexus All the Way!

  24. Nalk
    March 9, 2012 at 2:01 pm

    I have not had my favourite phone yet. All of my phones have missed one essential feature:

    A pin code for charging. When a phone is stolen the thief only needs to change the SIM and go on using the phone. With a pin code you have to use before being able to charge the battery less people would lose their phones.

    As for my favourite among the phones I have owned? My newest phone. I adapt to my phone and dont give it a second thought.

    My first was a Motorola. I dont remember the model name but it had a flip lid that covered half of the front and a retractable antenna. No text message capability and I only had to charge the battery twice a day in the giant table stand charger. It looked like the International Micro Tac 7500 but was older. I think it was numbered 3500 or 3600.

    My next was the Philips Diga. What a piece of crap that was. I could text someone but reading the answers was a pain. The message scrolled cross the screen and the back light usually turned off in the middle of the message which meant that I had to go stand under a lamp to read the entire message.
    It had a soft slider lid to protect the buttons but it always came off and got in the way.

    Next I got the Nokia 3210. Nice phone but I had major trouble confining myself to using only 180 characters in my messages. My phone was a nice red one. :)

    Next I jumped to the 3510i. Nice phone and no 180 character confinement. I had it until it started cutting out. Changed the key pad 3 times. I still have a brand new pad for it some where in my drawer. Sturdy and reliable. Made stop wearing wrist watches.

    Then I changed brands. The Sony Ericsson W810i. Another sturdy Phone with the "betamax version of memory cards". I never used my phones as jukeboxes but the camera was a nice addition. MMS was useful. 
    Once I took a photo of my coffee cup and sent it to someone who kept "text message pestering" me about the time I might arrive at her place to fix her PC. :)
    Recently it started turning itself off so I bought my latest phone. Xperia Mini Pro with a qwerty key pad and Android 2.1. 

    Next time I buy a phone I´m gonna see to it that it has qwerty but I think I´ll opt for one with a bigger screen. The small screen is crap on the net but with the Barnacle app I can use it as a hotspot for my laptop computer.

    So what is your next question? Our favourite computers we have owned? :) 

    • Dave Parrack
      March 14, 2012 at 12:19 am

      That may well be a future question, Nalk ;)

      You have quite the phone history. I find it interesting that you just adapt to your latest phone without thinking. But that you can remember old handsets in detail :)

      • Nalk
        March 14, 2012 at 2:28 pm

        I may have exaggerated slightly when I wrote "without a second thought". 
        I meant without too much trouble. It usually only takes me about a week or less to stop missing my old phone and  to stop swearing at and adapting to a new phone and over the years (48 of them this summer) I have found it increasingly easier to adapt myself. I think it is because phones doesnt really impress or intimidate me.After all a phone is for calling and SMSing someone.E-mail on phones? I have used e-mails since Windows 98 (my first computer predated Windows. It was made by Texas Instruments.) Internet on phones? Had it on my PC since W98. I actually upgraded from W95 to W98 just to easily go from modem to broad band. The phone is just a new platform but the technique of writing never changes and the button is still marked "send". :)As far as thinking back on the phones of my past I have had a few other phones, a yellow and black Sagem and a couple of Siemens, but I tend to have phones for a very long time. Those mentioned were just the ones sticking out in my memory.
        It helps that I have a lot of teen nieces and nephews. I have 11 brothers and sisters all with kids. They tend to go through a lot of phones and I am the goto guy when it comes to phone and computer repair and adaptation in my family and I always get good deals on their second hand phones and computers. This abundance of teens sparks long and fruitful conversations about phones when they have to convince someone (like an uncle) to buy a new phone for them for their birthdays or xmasses. This also means that phones good or bad are remembered easilly.

        The only thing I have had major trouble coming to terms with through the years is ringtones. I hate to have to get used to a new ringtone because the "old" ones arent in my new phone. Thank God for the invention of the internet and mp3´s. :)

        My W810i eventually got to sound like my old Nokia until I made my own ringtone. That spawned some great conversations at parties. :) 

        As far as my memory now ask me about my first music purchases. (a single with Bad Moon Rising and Lodi) :)

  25. Dave Parrack
    March 9, 2012 at 2:41 am

    Sturdy and functional aren't bad qualities. In fact I wish some of the modern phones were a little more of both at times.

    Thanks for the pic. It's very yellow ;)

  26. Dave Parrack
    March 9, 2012 at 2:39 am

    Are you finding iOS is looking a bit, well, ragged around the edges now too? That may be the subject of a future We Ask You ;)

    That's an intriguing concept. I'm sure it'll be possible one day. iPhone 12 perhaps? ;)

  27. Rajaa Chowdhury
    March 9, 2012 at 1:44 am

    My very first phone the Samsung R220 (purchased in January, 2001). very light weight and small dimension, a basic phone with great battery life with around 6 days standby and 5 hours talk-time, great reception, it served my purpose during those days. In December, 2008 I bought the Blackberry 8800 and am still using it. I actually love the trackball instead of the track-pad in the newer models. Great battery, still going strong, great reception, great messenger and email access, great sound quality, never crashed a single time. I am still using it and still going strong. And not having a camera actually reduces the nuisance value and I am allowed in the production floor with it. I am simply loving it. :)

  28. dsoonshi
    March 8, 2012 at 10:54 pm

    My First phone which I still have fondness to this day for was the first fllip phone the Motorola Startac. While all the sheep were rolling with Nokias, I rocked the startac on the beltclip.   All black, sleek and could out signal any phone at the time -- I could even get a phone signal at some underground subway stations.

    You could drop the thing many times and it did what a clamshell was supposed to do which was protect your phone.  It also reminded me of the Star Trek tricorder , which back in those days (90's) tech wasn't that advanced and there was nothing like it.

    The update was the fat v.90 which I hated, though it looked nice in its metallic clam shell.   But the RAZR was the bomb, though I never really dropped it.

    These were the days when a phone was a phone, and all real men needed was to make phone calls and not updated their facebook status or twitter accounts.

  29. Jason Ivey
    March 8, 2012 at 9:50 pm

    My old Samsung flip phone, with a palm looking screen it was great for a couple reasons.  1.  the battery would last me almost a week, no need to make sure I had chargers with me everywhere I went, different rooms, cars etc.  2.  was too inconvenient to text on, which is a good thing, wasn't obligated to answer every question, people knew if they wanted to me. 3. if I dropped it, I didn't have a *gasp* moment, hoping it didn't break. it was cheap and easy to replace. 4. I didn't have to remember to sync it, my contacts were on my sim card. 5. I took pictures with a real camera.

  30. Sam Percy
    March 8, 2012 at 8:45 pm

    Seriously, no love for Nokia 5110 in here? Those colorful and artsy plastic casings that you can put on depending on your mood rocked my world in the late 90's. Oh, and the antenna was awesome back then.

    I'm loving my Samsung Galaxy Note now - it's made for doodling.

  31. Spencer2302
    March 8, 2012 at 7:06 pm

    I will have to go with My Palm Pre (hacked) running at 1ghz. This OS is the Best! I have used every phone OS out and the Iphone  is ok. But how fluid the Palm is to use if I need to search I just start typing I dont have to click on anything if I need to switch from internet to send a text just back swipe and boom done. This phone is a multitasking monster. This is the only phone that can work as hard as I do.

    • Spencer2302
      March 8, 2012 at 7:19 pm

      My second would be 
      Sanyo SCP-6000.  
      It work in places most other phone do not. I love the features such as the call screen and the voice memo.  This phone was tough  it had a Magnesium Alloy Front Plate and could take abuse.  You can store up to 6 - 18 second voice memos and a really cool feature called "screen call" that lets you create your voicemail greeting that is stored digitally on the phone. You can decide if you want to answer an incoming call with this feature by selecting the meny button and then selecting "screen call".   You then hear the digital message that you recorded on the phone play and you can hear the caller leave a message. If you want to answer the phone you can by pressing talk, or just let the phone save the message digitally.  With the snapsync,multi media master software I had the coolest ringtones yea they are Midi but no one had custom ringtones back then.

  32. Bob
    March 8, 2012 at 6:40 pm

    myTouch.  It was free and it can do pretty much anything. Including playing hundreds of Super Nintendo and Gameboy Advanced games.

  33. Nikro000
    March 8, 2012 at 5:46 pm

    When I still lived in Austria, my second cell phone ver in 2001 was a Siemens
    M35i (yellow edition). It was small, had great rubberized keys, a very
    functional display and was virtually indestructable. I would demonstrate that to
    friends by letting it it drop from a table, being absolutely sure that nothing
    would happen to it. It had a great feel and good sound quality. Internet was
    WAP, which was not really useable, but for calling and sending texts it was
    unbeatable. Unfortunately I ahd to leave it behind when I moved to the US, as it
    was not compatible with the standards here. But I left it to my mother and she
    continued using it for many years.

    • Dave Parrack
      March 8, 2012 at 6:04 pm

      That's another phone I hadn't previously heard of. Let's be honest WAP was dire. I guess it did the job for a few years though.

      • Nikro000
        March 8, 2012 at 6:51 pm

        Siemens did a version of it for the US market. TMobile carried it for a few
        years. It was the C35. Basic phones by today's standards, but very sturdy and
        functional. And WAP in Europe was not only dire, it was unaffordable. Just
        checking your email was counted in dollars since it did not bill by data volume,
        but by time the the user spent online. And if you pressed the internet access by
        accident and didn't notice -  better have a well stuffed savings account. The pic is a M35i

  34. Jason L. Esman
    March 8, 2012 at 4:59 pm

    Original Nexus... broken power button, dropped, kicked, lost and found.  Still running.  I have since moved to HTC Sensation but the Nexus lives on now as my daughters phone.

    • Dave Parrack
      March 8, 2012 at 6:02 pm

      Are you liking the Sensation? I'm glad the Nexus lives on in usefulness :)

  35. Jay
    March 8, 2012 at 4:47 pm

    As of now, the iPhone 3GS/4 and my HTC Desire HD are equally up to par in terms of what I would say are my favorite phones of all time. iPhone, as always, has captured my attention with its wide array of apps. This is something I believe Android needs to work on, as the Market usually doesn't put out a lot of impressive apps as often as Apple. However, the Desire HD's hardware is excellent (not to mention the software part-- I'm running ICS on it now). The screen size is great, as it actually fits in my pocket (smartphones seem to be getting larger as they get smarter?)!

    • Dave Parrack
      March 8, 2012 at 6:00 pm

      Is the superior quality of apps the main reason you love your iPhone? Do you prefer ICS to iOS?

      I'm not sure I like the trend for larger screens. Somewhere between 3.5-inches and 4.5-inches suits me just fine.

      • Jay
        March 8, 2012 at 8:48 pm

        Dave, yes, you would be correct that it is merely the apps that has captivated me to use the iPhone. However, I do prefer ICS over iOS mainly because of its openness (being a graphic designer, Android has always been more open to customization and personalization). 

        I agree with you. Although the Galaxy SII and Galaxy Note are great phones and have superior features, it seems a little too large for a phone today. Not sure if this is possible, but a screen that could extend and shrink in future smartphones and at the same time fit in the pocket would definitely be nice!

  36. Coffeeman112
    March 8, 2012 at 4:02 pm

    I have owned Nokia 5130 Xpress Music and was pretty pleased with it, but I have had a Nokia 1600 and that phone awsome, had an option that I miss very much: send later for sms.

    • Dave Parrack
      March 8, 2012 at 5:58 pm

      I am discovering phones I have never heard of before here. Thanks for commenting.

  37. Delarge
    March 8, 2012 at 2:58 pm

    From the analog ages, Motorola 8162 "Vader". One of the smallest phones ever. flip-phone, external antenna, and that orange dotted screen!!!.

    It is still with me, I have it on a drawer at my office, it is still a big conversation topic.

    • Dave Parrack
      March 8, 2012 at 3:33 pm

      I bet it is! Some of these things should be in a museum, and I mean that in a good way :)

  38. Dave Parrack
    March 8, 2012 at 2:39 pm

    You're one of the few to name a current phone as your favorite. I'd actually still buy an S2 over a Nexus... especially with ICS on the way to the former.

  39. Dave Parrack
    March 8, 2012 at 2:38 pm

    They're a different breed though. You'll probably find the switch to the S2 or iPhone difficult to get used to. Let us know which way you go in the end, and why you choose one over the other.

  40. Dave Parrack
    March 8, 2012 at 2:36 pm

    The StarTAC was hot at the time, and sold extremely well before everyone and their mother had a mobile.

    I miss the days when a phone would last three days on a single charge lol.

  41. Zeesh86
    March 8, 2012 at 1:58 pm

    Galaxy Nexus for both amazing hardware and the much improved Android ICS OS.  Hands down the best phone in the market. 

  42. isonuZ
    March 8, 2012 at 1:43 pm

    I've had pretty shitty phones compared to the current market..
    the best oen I've owned is Nokia 5130 Xpress Music.
    I currently own a X3-00.. it's not that good.
    planning on getting a samsung galaxy s2 or an iphone, now those are phones!!

  43. SuperJdynamite
    March 8, 2012 at 1:32 pm

    I loved my Motorola StarTAC.  It was super hot (at the time).

    It had a nice speaker on it.  You could talk to somebody while inside a bar and actually hear what they were saying.

    Without a 1GZ processor and massive display I was able to get several days use out of it without a recharge.  If I didn't use it much I could go about a week between charges.

    When folded closed it had no exposed glass or buttons or anything.  It was nearly indestructible.

  44. Rotem Rave
    March 8, 2012 at 1:02 pm

    SE P900i - considering the market at the time it had the optimal blend - quick navigation buttons, keyboard, big touch screen and a very reasonable battery life. Not to mention a "market" of applications and add-on's

    • Dave Parrack
      March 8, 2012 at 1:10 pm

      Interesting choice. Do you still have it?

  45. Amir
    March 8, 2012 at 12:15 pm

    Definitely my dearly loved Nokia N95. Despite a lot of complaints and criticism on the phone, especially the price and battery life, this phone has served me extremely well.

    Dropped it like 25 times already and it never broke down, never sent to any repairs too!(Except for change of the phone cover).

    Furthermore, the 5 megapixel camera captures beautiful picture and video for a phone this old.

    Tried to change to Galaxy Ace, but didn't seem to satisfy me. Maybe a Galaxy Nexus will help.

    But the best phone for me is definitely the Nokia N95.

    • Dave Parrack
      March 8, 2012 at 1:09 pm

      You switched to Android and then back to your Nokia? That's rare. Another indestructible Nokia :)

  46. Nokia 1100
    March 8, 2012 at 12:12 pm

    Nokia 1100 which I still use. Standby time 5 days and sports a very useful LED flashlight..

    Very tough unit. That thing survived many a fall and even made it through the washer unscathed.

    • Dave Parrack
      March 8, 2012 at 1:07 pm

      Wow. I'd love to see how an iPhone coped with such an incident!

  47. Prasath
    March 8, 2012 at 11:35 am

    I am having LG optimus V from Virgin Mobile for an year.  Paid $150 for buying this phone. It is the best one. Paying only $25 only per month. It includes 300 min anytime and unlimited data (around 2.5 GB). 

    • Dave Parrack
      March 8, 2012 at 1:06 pm

      Thanks for sharing, Prasath.

  48. alsingingteacher
    March 8, 2012 at 11:31 am

    I now have an HTC Android phone, and I like it a lot. I especially enjoy the many apps that are available. But when it comes to having a phone that is simple to dial and with excellent sound quality on both ends, I miss my BlackBerry Tour. :-(

    • Dave Parrack
      March 8, 2012 at 1:04 pm

      I do think Blackberry phones were underappreciated at the time. I'm glad the HTC is working out for you :)

  49. Allan
    March 8, 2012 at 11:30 am

    Nokia 2600, it's the only phone i have owned.

    • Dave Parrack
      March 8, 2012 at 1:03 pm

      Can you see yourself ever making the switch to a smartphone?

  50. Einar Einarsson
    March 8, 2012 at 10:41 am
  51. g???g
    March 8, 2012 at 10:32 am

    The best phone that I ever owned was definitely the Nokia 1208. I'm still using it now :D It's unbreakable phone :P

    • Dave Parrack
      March 8, 2012 at 1:02 pm

      Older Nokias really are immune to breaking :)

  52. Chris Christodoulou
    March 8, 2012 at 10:03 am

    Nokia 6210. Would gladly still use it if it hadn't died of old age.

    • Dave Parrack
      March 8, 2012 at 1:00 pm

      Nokias only ever die of old age. They're indestructible otherwise! :)

  53. Kevin Rikys
    March 8, 2012 at 9:52 am

    It's a best at the time thing (and it'll show my age as well) These are the phone that left a lasting impression. Theres also been some been some utter crap phones that I've used, some for about 2 days, and passed on.
    1. Nokia 8110 The Matrix phone got it in '96
    2. Nokia 3310 Simple but a classic. Indestructible!
    3. Nokia N95 A phone that could compete with phones today apart from touch. Ahead of it's time (oh what happened to you Nokia)
    4. Samsung Galaxy S2. I've recently gone thru a succession of phone trying to find another classic. This is my current phone and I'm in awe of what this and the Android/Google ecosystem can do.

    • Dave Parrack
      March 8, 2012 at 12:59 pm

      Another tick for the S2 :)
      You were clearly a Nokia man for many years. Are you not tempted by the Nokia/Windows Phone combination? The Lumia 900 could be worth a look.

  54. Bob Henson
    March 8, 2012 at 9:18 am

    As a phone - Samsung A800 - tiny little clamshell phone, crystal clear sound, battery lasted for days.  As a tool - HTC Touch Cruise.

    • Dave Parrack
      March 8, 2012 at 12:57 pm

       "As a phone." You mean for calling and texting?

  55. StoyanDeckoff
    March 8, 2012 at 8:34 am

    HD2 - still using it! On year of (crappy) life with WM 6.5, and still using it with Android CM 7 :) 

    • Dave Parrack
      March 8, 2012 at 12:55 pm

      Interesting choice! Thanks for commenting.

      • StoyanDeckoff
        March 8, 2012 at 1:33 pm

         Mind it, I am talking about a smart-phone, which is on par (or better!) with most of the phones on sale today. It is more than  two years old, thanx to CNM it packs all the functionality of up to date Android! Since it packs snapdragon, it will get Ice cream update. I cant name a lot of smartphones, heading into their third year, receiving updates that wont slow it to death.
        And, as I said, the phone had to live a OS change! This is the 3310 of smartphones

        • Dave Parrack
          March 8, 2012 at 2:33 pm

          I just browsed the specs. It holds its own in most areas. I like your description of it as the 3310 of smartphones!

        • StoyanDeckoff
          March 8, 2012 at 3:47 pm

          It was MONSTER, when it was released. The popular desire, desire HD and HD7 were all released almost an year after HD2, all packing very similar to HD2's specs. 

  56. Indronil Mondal
    March 8, 2012 at 7:29 am

    first it was nokia 7610 > then it was replaced by nokia n70>
    and now Nokia c7
    but i miss that nokia 7610 it was amazing
    I could use it in what ever way i want just it was rough and tough a balance of every feature
    these modern phones are just not that tough...

    • Dave Parrack
      March 8, 2012 at 12:54 pm

      They're getting better but with screens that run almost to the edge modern phones will never be as tough as the old school phones. The Nokia 7610 certainly had an interesting design.

  57. Chris
    March 8, 2012 at 7:25 am

    Nokia e63. Had one of the best qwerty keyboards ever made, had decent multitasking support built in and the battery lasted several days per charge. Could also get a 3g signal in the back of shops, played internet radio (mp3) and handled skype calls really well.

    I still recommend it now to people who want a phone for mainly sms.

    • Dave Parrack
      March 8, 2012 at 12:52 pm

      There are still plenty out there who have no interest in smartphone capabilities. Are you still not a fan of touchscreens for typing?

  58. TMU-Kelly
    March 8, 2012 at 7:20 am

    iPhone 4s currently. Before that. I would have to say the VX7000 on verizon. But then again it would also be a toss up. VX7000 or XV8700 - I had both of those phones for multiple years and never had an issue.   But when the iPhone hit the market, I kind of gravitated to it more.

    After owning many palms and windows phones the iPhone for me just made so much sense.

    • Dave Parrack
      March 8, 2012 at 12:49 pm

      You're bang up to date then. Are you now locked in to Apple or would you ever consider switching to another OS in the future?

  59. Scott Sanders
    March 8, 2012 at 6:10 am

    I've owned G1, Moto Cliq XT, MyTouch 4G, and Samsung Galaxy S2. Galaxy S2 has been by far the best because of its gorgeous screen, quality camera, and the fact the it's always fast and doesn't slow down.

    • Dave Parrack
      March 8, 2012 at 12:48 pm

      A lot of love for the S2, and I can see why. Thanks for commenting :)

  60. Nouman Khan
    March 8, 2012 at 5:43 am

    Not so long ago...when symbian OS was in fashion and Nokia ruled the mobile markets, I owned a Ngage-QD, that phone was the most out-of-the-world kind of phone at that time around 7 years back.

    It was the first phone I had owned, and boy i was proud. People still are digging and searching if someone owns a QD, that kind of an image Ngage QD has left in the market.
    It was a totally different phone, it was like a joystick with dedicated keys for gaming... I loved that layout... no other phone had that kind of layout, playing any game was like a cakewalk, people used to envy the phone, especially when you played with them via bluetooth and thrash them in any game, because you had direction keys in the Ngage which the other mobile owners didn't :-D
    I loved that phone, if the Ngage QD is revived and comes into market, maybe i'll go for it at that instant... 

    • Dave Parrack
      March 8, 2012 at 12:47 pm

      The N-Gage line is interesting because now ALL smartphones are capable of playing games. Owning one must have been a conversation starter at least.

      Would you go back to it purely for nostalgia reasons?

  61. nuXNub
    March 8, 2012 at 5:29 am

    When life was simpler, Nokia 3310 was the phone for me - phone calls and texting only. My needs were simple then. It feels solid in the hand and was durable -rough it up and it'll still work.

    Now I'm on a Samsung Galaxy S II. Since I'm on a smartphone now, I try to optimise  it's usage; no longer just phone calls and texting only but surfing the net and reading with it, amongst others. MUO is now accessible whilst on the go. Time well spent while waiting for my appointments!

    I chose Android over Apple as it's open sourced. Sharing flies with other phones (smart or otherwise) is so much easier.

    • Dave Parrack
      March 8, 2012 at 12:41 pm

      Ah, the Nokia 3310. I think everyone had one of them at some point. Awesome phone (for the time).

      The S2 is a great phone. Reading MUO on it is exactly what you should be doing ;)

      Would you ever consider going with iOS?

      • nuXNub
        March 8, 2012 at 6:14 pm

         Going with iOS? Maybe, but highly unlikely. It seems 'closed' and I'll do what I can to support open source, having issues with 'traditional' Intellectual Property rights. For the time being at least, Android's the way for me! :-)

        • Dave Parrack
          March 9, 2012 at 2:36 am

          I fully understand that way of thinking. Don't let an Apple fanboy hear you diss iOS though. They've been known to turn nasty.

  62. Esteban
    March 8, 2012 at 5:26 am

    Sony Ericsson W810i. Battery lasted more than 1 week. The walkman was a must, and it had a set of little speakers with a long cable that you could use anywhere.

    I really don't think we can compare modern smartphones with anything else, my Nexus S is definitely the best phone I've had, but as I've said, it's on a different category.

    • Dave Parrack
      March 8, 2012 at 12:39 pm

      In terms of tech the latest thing will always be better. But it's how it served its purpose and enhanced your life. I get the feeling a lot of people still want phones that do the basics and have a longer battery life. A week is awesome.

      • Esteban
        March 14, 2012 at 6:38 pm

        Yes... I could do with extra battery and less functions.

        I don't know what happened to Sony, as I've said that phone lasted over a week. I also had a little Sony mp3 player: the box said the battery lasted 50 hours. I never ran out of juice on that small thing. I also never tested it to see if it did lasted 50 hours.

  63. garylapointe
    March 8, 2012 at 4:48 am

    The Samsung SPH-i500 Palm OS phone.  It was a flip phone. a little bigger than the StarTac, and ran Palm OS.  It was a great phone for the time.  A touch screen that supported the graffiti language to write right on the screen.
    While the iPhone is awesome, the calendar and address book are STILL awkward.  The SPH-i500 would let you add people to your appointments so you didn't have to type so much.  It was a great phone.  And you could tether your phone to use the internet too.

    I loved it and I'm sure I paid a fortune for it at the time.

    • Dave Parrack
      March 8, 2012 at 12:33 pm

      A touchscreen you could write on must have felt positively futuristic in 2003. What made you choose the iPhone in the present day?

      • garylapointe
        March 8, 2012 at 5:12 pm

        They eventually discontinued that phone; it was super slow with the data.  They prototyped an i550 that had all the new features faster internet (I don't recall if it was EVDO or 3G?) and SD slot, everyone who had a i500 wanted it, but it never got released (at least not in the US).

        I replaced it with one of the Palm Treo's with the stupid little keys (I always hated those keys) and you couldn't write on the screen any more (they had add ons to fix it, but it didn't fix it enough). It had faster internet (3g?, I think that's what I held out for), better camera and a SD slot and I managed to sync podcasts with iTunes quite seamlessly and could still tether my laptop.  The tethering was much more important back before so many places had WiFi.

        I was on an AWESOME retention plan with Sprint too.

        I used a few of those similar Palm Treo models with Sprint and finally took the plunge with the iPhone 3gs on AT&T when a girlfriend who knew I was itching for it suggested that I get on her family plan and made it affordable for me (AT&T really punishes individual user) although in the end she ended up punishing me for being on her plan...

        Now I've owned the 3gs, 4 and 4s.  With the 4s, I don't carry a pocket camera anymore if it's daylight the still and video cameras are so excellent.

        • Dave Parrack
          March 9, 2012 at 2:35 am

          I'm tempted to ask how the girlfriend punished you for being on her plan, but I won't!

          I know many people who no longer bother carrying a digital camera around because their smartphones does a better job. No one would have believed that possible five years ago.

  64. fumduq
    March 8, 2012 at 4:48 am

    MakeTrollOf, iPhone *

    • Dave Parrack
      March 8, 2012 at 12:22 pm

      But which flavor?

  65. Athisa Taber
    March 8, 2012 at 3:54 am


    • Dave Parrack
      March 8, 2012 at 12:18 pm


      • Athisa Taber
        March 8, 2012 at 3:21 pm

        large 4.3 SAMOLED display is superb,
        Dual core chipset is faaast, 
        Battery, Camera OK.
        OS is Android.
        It's a flagship, truly flagship :-)

        • Dave Parrack
          March 8, 2012 at 3:29 pm

          Not tempted by the Nexus then? Personally I prefer the S2 :)

        • Athisa Taber
          March 9, 2012 at 4:02 am

          Nexus doesn't support MicroSD,no native video calling,no FM Radio,Cam is only 5mpxl.
          MicroSD slot  & native video calling(without third party apps) are must have features to me.

        • Nkitt Dirtybit
          March 13, 2012 at 4:34 am

          how can u like android, it's just a cheap rip-off of iOS ......

  66. Aeiluindae
    March 8, 2012 at 3:45 am

    My HTC Desire Z is my best phone out of the 3 that I've owned, the other being an HTC Desire (died a watery death) and a crappy LG flip phone. The keyboard on the Desire Z is the killer feature for me. It's nice and big and fast for typing, with a logical layout for the non-letter/alt keys. Smartphones with good keyboards are rare and this one was nearly the only game in town for it. The screen is decent and a comfy size for single-handed operation, although obviously not on par with newer phones. The capacitive buttons are satisfactory. I prefer physical buttons because I can press them with gloves on, but the capacitive buttons work fine.

    In terms of speed, the processor can't handle the most demanding games available for Android, but with Cyanogenmod and Launcher Pro the UI is very smooth and responsive. Finally, the phone is built like a TANK. You can drop it from standing, it'll slide open and keep running without even a scratch. My phone has ONE dent on the battery case from when it hit something metal and pointy with a great deal of force. The phone is mostly made out of the trademark HTC grey grippy plastic, so it stays in your hand.

    I got a smartphone for the calender/organization apps and for the web connectivity. I went with Android because its open-source and way more flexible than iOS and Windows Phone 7. I prefer HTC because, in my experience, their phones are super solid in terms of build and feel. They aren't glossy plastic, which allows them to still look fine even after plenty of wear and tear. I'm happy until my contract runs out.

    • Dave Parrack
      March 8, 2012 at 12:17 pm

      Do you think you will always want a keyboard on your phone? With touchscreens getting bigger and better there may come a time when you don't get that choice.

      I also find your need for solid build quality interesting. I guess that means you reject Apple's form over function completely?

      • Nkitt Dirtybit
        March 13, 2012 at 4:33 am

        even i agree, i really hate touchphones, and this craze for touch phones or touch and type phones are really scaring me to death, will i get a great phone or not in future or will have to settle with what the whole world would be using !!!! :(

  67. Dannywill7
    March 8, 2012 at 3:40 am

    Samsung SGH C225  plain and simple "candy bar" phone.  Have had 3 of them and continue to buy up from ebay.  Its a TANK!!  takes a drop and some water.  Battery even after 2 yrs of use will keep phone working for over 3 DAYS.  Basic features only like phoning, texting, and contact lists.  Thats all I need.

    Because I can keep using them and just switching SIM cards, I have long ago run out of contract.  Next one will cost me $15 and I am good for couple more years with no contract.

    With so few features, I have a life outside of my phone, email and Facebook.  I can even talk face-to-face with real people.

    • Dave Parrack
      March 8, 2012 at 12:14 pm

      EBay is keeping you nicely supplied then. Do you ever think you'll make the switch to a smartphone? Do you think we're all too connected all the time now?

  68. Brian Howard
    March 8, 2012 at 3:35 am

    I miss my old Motorola Razr. I didn't use my phone for anything but the occasional text and for talking (do people still talk with their phones?) and the Razr was great for just that. Indestructible little beast too. Dropped it many times and got my share of scratches on it but it always worked. 

    • Dave Parrack
      March 8, 2012 at 12:13 pm

      A phone primarily for calling and texting? That's an alien concept these days.

  69. Paul Harris
    March 8, 2012 at 3:24 am

    Analog Motorola Bag Phone .... with an external antenna, it got reception where many others failed.

    • Dave Parrack
      March 8, 2012 at 12:11 pm

       Wow, that's some phone!

  70. Tyler Nienhouse
    March 8, 2012 at 3:06 am

    My Galaxy Nexus has been amazing. My Droid OG coming in second. The Droid 2 was awful.

    • Dave Parrack
      March 8, 2012 at 12:10 pm

      The Galaxy Nexus, because of the hardware or because of ICS?

      • Tyler Nienhouse
        March 8, 2012 at 2:39 pm

        Mainly because of how open it is, but in combination with the superior software and hardware to my other devices.

        • Dave Parrack
          March 8, 2012 at 3:28 pm

          The whole package then. Thanks for sharing :)

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