When good cell phones go bad

The Nokia 6131 fails an important durability test.

The cursed Nokia 6131 Nokia`

The Nokia 6131 always seemed liked a decent cell phone. I never got the chance to actually review it, but when I examined its AT&T cousin, the 6126, I gave it a "very good" rating.

So last week, when I was waiting to receive a new phone that I had ordered, I dusted off a spare 6126 that we had around the office. Unless I'm on vacation, I'm one of those people who has a hard time going without a cell phone.

My broken button. Kent German/CNET Networks

For the first few days, the 6126 worked fine. Though it's not the fanciest handset around, it delivered on call quality and battery life. But that all came to a crushing end two days ago when I dropped the 6126 (as I tend to do). It bounced off my shoe and hit a concrete floor. While it continues to make and receive calls as normal, the flip phone will not stay closed. Each time I try to close it, it just pops back open. That means I have to carry it around in the open position, which needless to say is more than inconvenient. The problem seems to be with the small button on the hinge that you can use to open the phone. The button is stuck in the "pressed" position and I've been unable to pry it free.

Both the Nokia 6133 and the 6126 also feature the hinge button. Have any Crave readers encountered the same problem? I doubt I'm alone but even if I am, that button and the spring-loaded hinge seem to be design flaws.

Update: In response to the naysayers below, I'm quite responsible for my own actions. But a phone's hinge should not break after one drop, even after bouncing off my shoe onto a concrete floor. I've seen the iPhone drop on a sidewalk and come with just a few scratches. And if a button is designed so that it can interfere with the phone staying closed, then that is a design flaw.

 

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