You can’t access the internet. And it doesn’t have a camera or games you can play. In fact, this new mobile phone doesn’t even let you send text messages. The designers of ‘John’s Phone’ have created a device that has only one function: it lets you make calls. Hailed as the world’s simplest phone, it is designed to be a tongue-in-cheek ‘basic backlash’ by targeting users who do not want the flashy features of next-generation models. Dubbed the ‘anti iPhone’, the £67 device with a brightly coloured facade and big buttons resembles a toy.
The phone’s Dutch makers, advertising agency John Doe, are hoping it will be a hit with technophobes and children buying their first phone. The manual is only one page long and, unlike its battery-hungry smartphone counterparts, the makers of ‘John’s Phone’ claim that a single charge will provide users with three weeks’ battery life.
Even the phone’s ‘built-in’ address book is old-fashioned – concealed behind a flap at the rear of the phone, it’s a physical pen-and-paper notepad used to store your contacts. For those in a rush, the device does have the ability to record ten speed dial numbers. The phone’s designers wanted the phone to have ‘no frills and no unnecessary features such as a camera, text messaging and an endless number of ringtones’.
Designer Diedriekje Bok said: ‘At a time when there is an abundance of choices and oppressive channels, we wanted to develop a simple gadget. It is also a useful phone while travelling, exercising or weekend sailing. You always reach for your close family and friends, so John’s Phone is for when the rest of the world does not matter.’
It remains to be seen whether all mobile phone users will be rushing to swap their hi-tech phones for this new, pared-down model just yet. I can almost see Azerbaijanis here buying these phones for their kids or old parents. The price (transferring into our national currency) would be about 53-55 manats. Pretty cheap. So, we can wait until this “John’s Phone” arrives in Azerbaijan (Baku in particular), and we just might buy ourselves one. Or maybe two…