What is the worst phone you have ever owned?

Evan Selleck
Contributing Editor from  Arizona
| January 6, 2013

We can all remember our favorite devices. Whether it’s a product you used years ago, or it’s one that you’re still using now, it will forever hold a fond place in your mind as being “the one.” The one device that made you get excited about technology. Maybe it got you excited about a particular piece of software. Or a hardware standard. Our favorite devices are easily capable of putting a smile on our face; whether from memories of better days, or because you’ve never held anything better than what you’re using now.

But there can’t be good without the bad. We need it balanced. And there are usually always plenty of devices that help balance the bigger picture.

At the end of December, Taylor Martin asked you what you thought the worst phone of 2012 was. It was a good question, especially considering your tastes have a lot to do with it. Calling out the worst phone of last year can come down to physical aesthetics, the way software looks or feels based on ten minutes of usage, or a device simply running an operating system you don’t like. 2012 saw a nice climax with phones, but that doesn’t mean they were all great.

What’s more, I think we can all admit that over the years, all the way back to when you had your first phone, there have been a lot of devices that just weren’t up to par. Screen technology. Processors. RAM. On board memory. All of these things have just recently become a huge focus of the mobile industry and what powers it: You. Right around the time that Android began taking off, people really started to focus on the technology powering our phones, and that’s why we’re now so adamant about having quad-core processors and 1080p displays.

Don’t get me wrong, all of that would have happened eventually, but I think our constant demand for “bigger and better” has forced the industry to work double-time to reach demand.

I want to expand on Taylor’s original question a bit. Instead of just focusing on the year 2012, I want you to look back with me into your cell phone past. I want you to look passed the bills, and focus on the phones you’ve owned over the years. It doesn’t matter how many you’ve had, but for this particular question I imagine the more the better.

I’ve always been told that I can find the good in any phone. Sometimes I have to try really hard to do it, but I can usually find something worthwhile in a device. That didn’t happen with one particular device, though. It was released in the winter months of 2006, and it will forever be known as the SLVR (L7). It was designed by Motorola, and it was a device that was meant to attract the multimedia-hungry folks out there, especially those who were smitten with the design nature of their smash-hit, the RAZR.

The SLVR-L7 had a lot of great features. It had iTunes functionality, and it made it easy to store about 100 songs on your phone for easy listening. The battery wasn’t spectacular, but it wasn’t horrendous, either. It was super-thin, lightweight, and when it lit-up it was something to stare at. But you know what? None of it worked exactly the way it should have for me. I can still remember trying to sync music, and hating the experience. I can still remember taking photos with the phone and threatening to never take another photo with a phone ever again. I can remember that terrible, terrible keypad. (Which was a shock, because the RAZR’s keypad wasn’t atrocious.) Basically, I thought the SLVR would be the device to make me drop a dedicated MP3 player. It wasn’t. Not even close, actually.

In theory, it should have been easy to find a lot of things right around the SLVR-L7, but I just couldn’t do it. It made me too frustrated. I don’t remember the phone I switched to because of the SLVR-L7, but I’m pretty sure it was a BlackBerry-branded handset. Yeah, that’s how crazy the SLVR-L7 made me.

But, that’s the worst phone I’ve ever owned, so now I want to hear from you, Dear Reader. I want to know what phone has made you cringe, and what makes you frown just thinking about it. Was it a smartphone? Wasn’t a phone you’ve owned recently? Let me know!

Products mentioned