(Pocket-lint) – Cast your mind back to a time before responsive apps, functional cameras and endless group chats – a simpler time, and one where the flip phone was king.
Thankfully, the good old days can return again and you can add some simplicity back into your handset by picking up one of the best flip phones. Unlike more modern smartphones, which have spec sheets a mile long, these devices are largely very similar.
That means the biggest choice you have to make is which pre-paid, pay-as-you-go carrier deal you go with, as well as perhaps what level of cellular connection you’ll require.
Most big-name manufacturers have naturally moved away from the budget, clamshell-style phone, but there are still many devices to pick between. So, let’s flip the script and detail some of the best-rated options on the market.
Best flip phones available to buy today
Alcatel MyFlip 4G Flip Phone
Get a dose of nostalgia in your pocket with Alcatel’s MyFlip, which strips things back and allows you to access everything you need from a pre-paid plan.
It’s worth noting that the device will be locked to Tracfone’s network, but, depending on the month-to-month plan you decide, you’ll still be able to receive unlimited calls and texts, as well as 4G internet access starting at 1GB.
The MyFlip also packs a decent array of features, including a 2MP rear camera, a 2.8-inch display and battery life that can provide up to 6.5 hours of talk time.
Nokia’s 2720 is perhaps the most advanced flip phone on this list, giving you a sleek design, excellent durability and plenty of features.
That starts with support for Google Assistant, but it extends to apps like Facebook and WhatsApp, as well as general 4G access and internet browsing.
For the safety-conscious, there’s an emergency button, which, when pressed, will send a text message and your current location to five pre-selected contacts in your address book.
If you don’t mind spending a little bit extra, AT&T’s Cingular Flip 2 focuses a little more on quality internals and a couple of premium features.
There’s a Qualcomm Snapdragon 210 processor at the core, delivering speedy performance around the phone – ideal for relatively heavy users that spend lots of time jumping between menus and texting.
For those who also like a bit of a browse, the pre-paid device can also access 4G LTE speeds to allow for downloading apps and stream content on the go.
If the 4GB internal memory isn’t enough, you can even add a microSD to expand storage to up to 32GB for more contacts, music and photos.
Big Button Uleway
If you really want to take things back to basics, Big Button’s devices are the way to go.
There’s little by way of cellular connectivity – with only support for 2G – but it’s big on simplicity. The large keypad and loud volume make it a great pick for elderly users and the hard of hearing, which is also bolstered by the SOS button and speed-dial keys.
As with other flip phones, battery life is also very solid. Big Button indicates that the 900mAh battery should last for up to 240 minutes of talk time, and 160 hours on standby.
One of the few options still available from a household name is this LG B470, which comes locked to AT&T as a pay-as-you-go option.
There are no particular bells and whistles here, but it does feature a bit of a step-up in build quality over other flip phones, as well as a 2.2-inch main display, a 1-inch front display and a 1.3MP camera.
For elderly users and the hard of hearing, it also has enhanced max volume. And for those who want some cellular connectivity, 3G support is also available through the carrier.
Easyfone Prime A1
It may not come from a household name, but Easyfone’s Prime A1 is a budget-friendly pick that gives you both a raft of features and flexibility with your pay-as-you-go deal.
There are big buttons and hotkeys for easy dialing, as well as a high maximum volume for the hard of hearing and an SOS button. The front of the red clamshell design features a 1.4-inch display, which is backed up by a 2.4-inch main screen once you flip it open.
You’re also not locked into any particular carrier, either, which is a real bonus.
Kyocera DuraXV LTE E4610
Kyocera isn’t offering the DuraXV on the cheap, but it’s a great pick for those who want something a bit more rugged than the standard flip phone.
You’ll have to make sure you’re happy to sign up to a pay-as-you-go plan through Verizon, but, once you do, you’ll be able to enjoy all that this 4G-capable, waterproof device has to offer.
And that package includes 16GB of internal memory, which is ideal for storing MP3 files, photos through the rear-facing camera and plenty of contacts.
Big Button Artfone
We’ve already outlined one Big Button flip phone above, but the company’s Artfone offers a slightly different feature set and design for pay-as-you-go users to enjoy.
It still has the same large keys, enhanced volume and simple operating system to make it easy to use for the elderly, but this device features a slightly different dual-screen package. The 1.8-inch front display gives at-a-glance looks at the date, time and contacts, while the larger 2.4-inch screen allows the user to navigate through the phone.
When added to the SOS features, 2G ceullar support, flashlight and long-lasting battery, it’s an affordable package that’s well worth considering.
TTsims Flip TT140
If you need an ultra-cheap option to flip and take things back a couple of decades, the TT140 from TTsims is well worth considering.
It’s able to be used as a sim-free device from a range of different UK carriers (not Three, however), and features a crisp 1.77-inch colour screen, Bluetooth, standby battery life of around 4-5 days and a total talk time of roughly 3 hours.
Just be aware that you’ll need to provide your own charging brick, which can be paired with the included USB cable.
Geemarc CL8500 Amplified Clamshell phone
The Geemarc CL8500 Amplified Clamshell phone is the perfect emergency backup phone for those in need.
It is as back to basics as you get, and that’s a great thing. It has a 2.4″ screen, and a cool clock on the outside, so makes pocket watches that much more obsolete.
It features an amplified speaker that allows it to ring up to 90dB, so you won’t be missing it. Match that with it’s compatibility with hearing aids and it makes the perfect phone for those who are hard of hearing.
Additionally, you also get the ICE function, which means ‘In case of emergency’. It has four Pre-programmed contacts that can be accessed in case something goes wrong.
Writing by Conor Allison. Originally published on .