The Best Flip Phones [October 2020]

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It’s been more than ten years since the original iPhone launched, and in that time, we’ve seen smartphone adoption skyrocket. Just fifteen years ago, smartphones weren’t much more than a utility for white-collar business workers and folks with exorbitant amounts of cash, but since 2007, smartphones have become commonplace. In that decade, your parents have upgraded to iPhones, your tech-addicted friend has switched between a dozen phones, and kids as young as eight years old have begun to adopt their parent’s old smart devices.

Meanwhile, the major players in the smartphone wars of the 2000s—Microsoft, Nokia, Palm, and Blackberry, have all but left the market, replaced by Apple, Samsung, and Google, bought out or replaced and forgotten about in the minds of consumers over the years. And while those companies create flagship devices that can run upwards of $1000, budget smartphones have also gotten really good, allowing access to a powerful new device for on-the-go computing no matter your budget.

In 2019, smartphone adoption in the United States had hit 81 percent according to Pew Research, meaning more than four out of five American adults now have a smartphone in their life. Those numbers have especially increased among adults over 50 years old and lower-income Americans, presumably due to the increased simplicity of smartphones and the ability to buy a good device for around $100. But those numbers still mean one in five Americans have held onto non-smartphone devices, and from a certain perspective, it’s easy to see why. Feature phones tend to get the basics right, with solid call quality, the ability to send text messages, and perhaps the most important feature: multi-day battery life.

Whether you haven’t yet committed to owning a smartphone, or you’re looking for a secondary device to take camping, hiking, or to keep on the side for emergencies, owning a basic flip phone is a great idea for some consumers.

Unfortunately, most technology sites don’t quite keep track of flip phone devices any longer, which might leave some consumers on their own when looking for a new device for the basic necessities. Let’s fix that. This is a look at the best flip phones on the market today.

Folding Phones

Before we dive in, let’s be clear about folding smartphones. Companies like Samsung and Motorola have developed smartphones with the body and build of a classic flip phone. While not every device has been a homerun—both of Motorola’s attempts to revive the Razr to its classic glory have been panned by critics—Samsung continues to make major strides with their folding tech, and this year’s Galaxy Z Flip was a smartphone built into a classic folding chassis.

Still, we won’t be including them on this list, for a number of reasons. First and foremost, these phones just aren’t ready for primetime yet. Even the Galaxy Z Flip received mixed reviews from critics, and while the new Galaxy Z Fold 2 is easily the best folding phone yet, it’s early technology in an ever-evolving field. Second, the cost of these phones is still sky-high, even for premium devices. Expect to pay as much as $2,000 for a folding smartphone, a far cry from the devices featured on this list.

That’s not to say some of these phones don’t feature some basic apps and data connection, and as we move forward into a world with more and more folding devices, it seems inevitable one lands on this list. But for now, they’re just not ready for a recommendation quite yet.

Everyone else

3 thoughts on “The Best Flip Phones [October 2020]”

Avatar Claude Fox says:
Can you tell me which flip cell phones have email?
Avatar Michael S Reiter says:
which phone if any has apps and most importantly bluetooth? Apps like spotify,FB,google chrome,weather, etc.
Avatar Tom says:
Does the Nokia 2720 work on AT&T in the United States?

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