We imagine that it’s not easy being a smartphone developer, considering that, aside from building a fully-functioning phone, you also need to make it meet or exceed the so-called “smart” requirements. Of course, you can just carry an old phone and say that you don’t care as long it can call and send text messages. But then again, if you’re a busy person and lugging around a laptop is becoming more trouble than it’s worth, then you may want to invest on a good smartphone. Now, we know that choosing a smartphone is not that easy, especially when there are certain factors that you need to really think about like what carrier to choose, what OS fits your needs, and so on. What would really help your search, though, is knowing what NOT to buy; in which case, let us list down the smartphones that are definitely unworthy of your precious money.
Oh yes, this baby is durable and is well-armed against dust, rain, humidity, and other elements that could easily break a non-ruggedized phone. But, if you’re after a great media experience, this smartphone is going to disappoint with its relatively low 800 x 480 resolution and 220 lux brightness rating (Note: The average smartphone registers 299 lux on a typical light meter). In terms of software, the Galaxy Rugby Pro runs on an older Android Ice Cream Sandwich OS, which is too bad since most of its competition already comes with Google’s Android Jelly Bean software. Also, the camera needs to be faster since a one-second delay could mean the difference between getting the shot that you want and the shot that you’ll have no choice but to trash.
So you’re looking for a budget phone with “smart” features. That’s okay; after all there are some inexpensive smartphones that impress even if they don’t quite offer the luxury experience that an iPhone (for example) does. The problem with the Pantech Burst is that it fails where call quality is concerned, which is, to put it mildly, disappointing given how budget phones are expected to nail it as far as basic features go (i.e. call and text). One reviewer even said that there was a bit of dropout, “where the call is still connected but you go through periods of a few seconds each where one party can’t hear the other.”
For a device named Viper, it sure doesn’t look dangerous or sexy. It just looks awkward “with a chassis so engorged that you’d expect Sprint to bundle it with a mini in-home 4G LTE cell tower just to accommodate its capaciousness.” There’s also an issue with the battery life (it comes with a 1700mAh battery), at least according to one reviewer who says, “You cannot use the phone’s functions for half an hour without the battery draining significantly. I spend most of the day constantly recharging it.” Expect also some choppiness in terms of Internet and connectivity, even if does feature a dual-core 1.2GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon S3 processor with 1GB of RAM.
Another budget phone that doesn’t quite deliver is the Kyocera Milano, with its “below-average display and reception problems.” Design-wise, it’s a bit small compared to more recent Android phones; but it does feel comfortable to hold. What’s annoying, though, is the 320 x 240 resolution, which makes both images and text look grainy and the colors on the hazy side. As for installing apps, users may find it a somewhat frustrating experience as most fail after a few minutes. This could be due to the phone’s ridiculously small internal storage, which may be good enough for browsing the web and navigating menus but not for other performance-related functions.