Smartphones are super powerful devices that you can use to post photos and video to social media, get emails and other messages, shop online, and way more. But sometimes all of those notifications and social networks can be overwhelming. For those times that you want to be distraction-free but still available to communicate if necessary, the Light Phone 2 is an option.
The Light Phone 2 features a 2.84-inch E Ink display and a stripped down version of Android called Light OS. It supports calls, texts, and alarms at launch, but Light is planning to add tools like a mobile hotspot, calculator, directions, ride sharing, and a simple music player by the end of the year.
The phone has 4G LTE, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, and GPS, and it works with AT&T, T-Mobile, Verizon, Cricket, and Metro by T-Mobile in the U.S., and the North America model includes support for LTE bands 2, 4, 12, 13, 17, 25, and 26. If you're not ready to commit to fully living the Light Phone lifestyle, the Light Phone 2 works with T-Mobile's DIGITS plan that allows you to connect the Light Phone 2 to your main phone number so that calls and texts for your main phone will also go to the Light Phone. According to Engadget, it'll work with Verizon's NumberShare service in September and AT&T's NumberSync by the end of the year.
When you're using the Light Phone 2, calling works like you'd expect and you can have a contacts list, though you'll have to manually update it each time you want to add a new number. Texting works when you turn the phone into landscape mode, though it's worth noting that while you can receive emoji, you can't send them.
Unlike most other Android phones, the Light Phone 2 doesn't have a status bar that'll fill up with notifications when you've got incoming calls or texts. Instead, you'll see single asterisk next to the clock if you've got a notification, and you can even disable that if you want to de-stress further. You can even disable the clock if you'd like, and messaging can be turned off as well if you want.
The Light Phone 2 is now available for pre-order following a successful Indiegogo crowdfunding campaign. You can pre-order the Light Phone 2 for $350, and orders are expected to be delivered before the end of October.
A minimalist phone like the Light Phone 2 isn't for everyone, and even for those looking to lessen a smartphone addiction, it may be difficult to switch to this device full-time. However, it could be a nice option for helping you to disconnect a bit on the weekends or when you're on vacation, giving you calls and messages if you need them and eventually some simple tools like directions. At $350, it's not exactly cheap, but for those looking to minimize distractions, the Light Phone 2 is a nice-looking device that'll still let you communicate with others when you need to.