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Smartphones, smartphones everywhere!
Most of us have grown accustomed to pulling out our personal pocket computers in waiting rooms, trains, and airports, but I often hear from friends and family who’ve avoided getting caught up in the smartphone era altogether.
Some folks don’t find smartphones to be simple enough to use, and others would rather not introduce yet another glowing rectangular screen into their lifestyle. Plenty of people, too, find the price of smartphones—even the more affordable ones—to be far too expensive to justify.
Fortunately, flip phones (remember those?) are standing the test of time. Whether you’re looking to unplug or you just find smartphones to be far too fussy, here are some of the best flip phones you can buy right now.
1. A simple phone for young-at-heart seniors
In addition to being a truly happenin' style of swing dance, Jitterbug is a well-known brand of simple, approachable phones for seniors. In addition to having large, easy-to-read buttons and an extra loud speaker, this particular variation of 'Bug features a dedicated emergency button that puts people in contact with health and safety experts immediately.
The Jitterbug's menu software distills everything down into simple, yes-or-no prompts—perfect for people who'd rather not navigate the often-complex menu systems of modern smartphones.
And yes, this Jitterbug is sporting a camera. At just 2MP, it's certainly not going to be capturing any mindblowing shots anytime soon, but it's certainly nice to have—especially when so many flip phones don't come equipped with a camera at all. It's available in both red and "graphite."
2. A no-frills flip phone for those who crave simplicity
There's not much to say about the LG Revere 3. It's small, affordable, and offers exactly the type of barebones experience you'd expect from a phone that looks like it showed up in a time machine from a decade and a half ago—and I don't mean that disparagingly!
There's something sort of elegant about the Revere 3's no-frills design. When closed, the LCD display on the front keeps the date, time, and battery status displayed. When opened, the main color display is nicer than some of the more lackluster screens you're bound to find on contemporary flip phones.
And although I've characterized the Revere 3 as a "no-frills" flip phone, there are a couple of very minor frills (for very minor thrills): a 1.3-megapixel camera and GPS navigation support.
3. A flip phone designed with emergencies in mind
Similar to the Jitterbug, this flip phone is built for people who want a little extra sense of personal safety. There's an SOS button on the back of the phone, but unlike the Jitterbug (which contacts health and safety agents), the Jethro's SOS button can be programmed to contact up to six people at once, and you can even opt to have the mode of contact take the form of a customizable text.
The Jethro flip phone's M4/T4 hearing aid compatibility makes it a great option for the hearing impaired, and due to its lack of bells and whistles, it's also a perfect first phone for kids—especially given its helpful SOS button. The charging dock that comes with the Jethro flip phone makes charging a cinch, too.
Note: This phone is only compatible with Jethro Mobile, T-Mobile 3G/2G, AT&T 3G, or similar networks.
4. A flip phone with some extra features for Verizon users
At around $88, the LG Exalt 2 is the priciest flip phone on the list, but for good reason: It's stocked with features that make it better than your average flip phone, and it's all packaged within a sleek, modern design.
In addition to web access, GPS navigation, and a respectable display, the Exalt 2 also comes equipped with a 5-megapixel camera. When it's closed, the dotted-light display on the front of the Exalt 2 indicates the time and/or contact information of those who are trying to get in touch with you.
There is a catch, however: The Exalt 2 is a Verizon-only flip phone. If you don't belong to the Verizon network, you should steer clear.
5. A rugged flip phone for off-road lifestyles
The Samsung Convoy 3 is as durable as its moniker implies. Its easy-to-grip, tough-as-nails design meets military specifications for shock-, dust-, and heat-proof performance.
The Convoy 3 features a camera, a push-to-talk button, and dual microphones for noise cancellation. It also supports voice commands for those times when you can't be bothered to juggle your phone.
Samsung's Convoy flip phone is the perfect companion for people who don't demand much from their phone but still want it to keep up with their active lifestyle. For less than $60 on Amazon, you really can't go wrong.