My old phone finally died this weekend. It was nothing special and an inch thick (ugh). I hope to find something better this time around. I went to the local store just to see what kind of dismal options I had for a new phone.
First of all there were only 3 phones that weren't "smart phones". (I include anything with a big touch screen in this designation.)
Of those 3 options, 2 had music player buttons up the front. This excludes them on principle, since I already have a real music player & amp in my other pocket I don't need a shitty music player on my phone. The last option was huge and had monster buttons for blind people or something. I'm not blind and I don't want a ginormous cell phone but it was the best choice there! It was the only thing not bloated with tons of crap I don't need or want.
I really hate all these popular cell phones, which should actually be called "all-in-one" devices since 95% of their features nowadays have nothing to do with phoning. To my mind a cell phone should be small, durable, able to send/receive phone calls, and I guess probably text messages as well since they have become so engrained in society now.
But these "smart" devices reek of amateurism. A cell phone camera won't appease anyone who knows anything about photography and has a real camera any more than a cell phone music player will appease any Head-Fi member. Similarly a 3" mobile browser won't appease many people who use the internet productively (I guess there could be some exceptions, but they're not well implemented). Taking pics of your dipshit friends, listening to Justin Bieber and updating Facebook/Twitter is about the extent of the usefulness of these devices and the mentality of the audience they are created for.
To anyone intelligent who appreciates the paradigm of separating tasks and hates bloated software or hardware, these "smart" "phones" are about the representation of everything we hate. Rather than performing one task well, they perform every task poorly. They are the final commercialization of technology for amateurish audiences of brainless teenagers and adults with about the same mentality. They are not only bloated in size, unnecessary features, short battery lives, low durability, but they also tie you in with complex plans, locks all over the phone, and they cost a lot!
The final nail in the coffin is all the headaches surrounding locked phones, crappy proprietary cables & software required to interface with the phone, and all these ridiculous "data plans". I wouldn't use one of these things if I got it for free. It is alternatively funny and sad that there are tens of millions of fad-following brainless dolts out there who are constantly chasing after the newest and greatest and most stylish phones.
So, Head-Fi, I dearly hope there is a Cellphone-Fi somewhere or at least some products designed for the higher intelligence or more tasteful members of society, as there usually is in every market. Please enlighten me.
I felt mostly the same as you, and I've always hated Apple. Yet I caved in and bought myself an iPhone 3GS about 1 1/2 years ago, and I honestly don't know how I lived without it. I'd say get over your misconceptions and give a smart phone a try. I'm no "brainless teenager or adult" and they certainly are not as bloated as you believe. The data plans and less-than-stellar call quality are the only two negatives I can think of.