CNET Top 5
Awful cell phonesIt's hard to find a bad cell phone these days -- unless you buy one of these.
It's a great time to be alive and communicating. Excellent cell phones of all kinds abound. These, however, are not among them. Top 5 phones you should pass up for something, anything, else. #5 Moto Flipout (6.7) Lesson one: When making a touchscreen smarpthone make the screen large enough to touch. This chunky little thing has the Android OS crammed into it, but not enough interface area to really use it in spite of a nice slide out keyboard . Hint: The screen is square, the web is not. Speakerphone is also crap as was its 3G radio. Pass. #4 Sony Ericsson Vivaz (6.3) Touchscreen products pretty much all use whats called a capacitive touch screen these days. Except the Vivaz, which uses resistive technology that is more like the buttons on a gas pump and that ain''t cool. Coupled with the hoary old Symbian OS and slow internal guts, you'll have plenty of time to contemplate what else you should have bought. #3 Samsung SGH-a107 (6.0) This is the most basic phone in our list of losers today, and frankly too basic. It doesn't have an external display, so you have to flip it open to do anything. Other than making it a great prop for a movie set in the 90's, that's just a mess. Oh, and it's missing the single biggest innovation in phones since the flip: Bluetooth. #2 ZTE Agent (5.3) Yeah, ZTE, is who makes this dud. I'd never heard of them either. I think this quote from our review says it all: "Design, features and call quality all leave much to be desired." We done with this one? Before we get to our #1 phone to avoid, a smartphone in general is not something we are staying away from: Nielsen research indicates that the number of smartphones in use in the U.S. will equal the number of ordinary cell phones by around Q3 of 2011. #1 Dell Aero (5.0) Running the ancient Android 1.5 OS doesn't start things well, but then Dell, that paragon of user interface design, skins it in a way that makes it frustrating and unintuitive. Add sluggish internals and mmmmm, sounds nice. If you want to see the secret 6th loserphone that vied for #1, or to catch up on all the CNET Top 5's, head to top5.cnet.com. I'm Brian Cooley.