- Dumbphone owners don’t need to bring their charger with them wherever they go.
- I can put my dumbphone in the same pocket as my keys and not freak out.
- I dropped my big old dumb phone, and the floor cracked.
- I can see oncoming cars when I cross the street.
- I don’t wake up in the middle of the night because of some app telling me it’s time to kill zombies.
- My dinner never gets cold while I’m arranging everybody’s food for my Instagram status.
- Couples with dumbphones actually speak to each other during meals.
- Dumbphones only need to get charged like 1-2 times per week, tops.
- Dumbphone owners don’t decide where to eat lunch based on which restaurants offer free wifi.
- Nobody gives me dirty looks when I’m standing in the welfare line.
- My teenager NEVER asks to borrow my phone.
- Or my charger.
- Or my USB.
- Or my AUX.
- Or my earbuds.
- I never have to spend all day searching my teenager’s room for my phone, my charger, my USB, or my AUX, or my earbuds.
- Nobody ever accuses me of taking THEIR charger, their USB, their AUX, or their earbuds.
- A husband, wife, and two teenagers will save about $200 to $300 a month using dumb phones instead of smart phones. No data plans. No monthly insurance fees. No app downloads. No data overages.
- With their extra $200 to $300 a month, The Dumphone family can afford a Caribbean cruise. Every single year.
A few years ago the Casio G’zOne flip phones were a huge hit for Verizon customers. These were some of the most rugged, waterproof, dustproof, shockproof, drop-proof, practically indestructible phones money could buy. And they looked pretty cool too.
Many office-bound tech reviewers complained that they traded features for durability, but those criticisms completely missed the point.
Sigh…that’s what happens when you design a cell phone for extreme outdoor adventurers and heavy-duty laborers and then hand it over to office boys and girls to write up the reviews.
Now at the tail end of 2014, Casio doesn’t make them anymore, and Verizon doesn’t sell them anymore. But these phones are definitely still in demand.
In fact, their scarcity is actually driving prices just as high as or even higher than their original sale prices from 3-6 years ago. On one popular cell phone e-commerce site, a brand new, still-in-the-box Casio G’zOne Rock listed for $400! That’s double the msrp from when the phone came out in 2009!
Today, these rugged cell phones are as hot as ever!
Casio G Zone Cell Phones…
Casio G’zOne Boulder
The Casio Boulder was one of the best rugged flip phones ever. Designed to meet military standards for ruggedness against the elements, this phone was basically waterproof, shockproof, dustproof, and drop proof and was impervious to all but the most extreme temperatures.
Reviewers literally threw it against walls, froze it into a dish of ice, then thawed out the phone…and it still worked perfectly.
Casio G’zOne Rock
This was a classic design that previous owners look back to with fondness. The G’zOne Rock looked like a cross between a Corvette and the Batmobile. And it was built tough, but surprisingly, some reviewers found it to be not quite as tough as the Boulder that preceded it. Still, it handled hundreds of drops onto concrete and full submersion in water as advertised.
Mark Anders from Surfline.com took his Rock surfing with him and put it to the test. The Rock performed perfectly, surviving crashing waves, smothering sand, and multiple collisions with various ground surfaces. Not many other phones on the market can boast that, even to this day.
Casio G’zOne Ravine
The Ravine took the G’zOne phones in a new direction, aesthetically. While the first designs were more edgy and sleek – like some kind of weapon from a Star Trek movie – Ravine took on a more conservative yet stylish look that could draw a crowd at party and yet would not seem out of place in a boardroom meeting either.
The Ravine maintained the same rugged functionality that earlier G’zOnes exhibited, but with improved sound quality, media options and web interface. It still wasn’t a smartphone, but it didn’t need to be.
The reviewer at PC Magazine gave it a nearly perfect rating, throwing it against walls, submerging it in water, and even running over it 6 times with her car!
Scratches…nothing more than scratches…
Casio G’zOne Ravine 2
Casio’s Gzone Ravine 2 was an improvement in many ways over its predecessor, but some reviewers just didn’t love it like the original Ravine. Reviewers put it through a lot of abuse, and many were satisfied, while others were not.
In all honesty, as the years went by and more Casio G’zOnes came out, many reviewers simply went to extremes to try to break these phones. It’s almost laughable to see how each model had to jump through more hoops than previous ones to get a thumbs up.
But the Ravine 2 was still a damn tough phone, and most negative criticisms were – not surprisingly – from people who wanted more features and weren’t particularly interested in phones that could survive the elements.
Casio G’zOne Brigade (qwerty keyboard)
While outdoorsy types (the G’zOne’s original target audience) absolutely loved every G’zOne that came out, the desk-bound naysayers continued to whine about the phones’ lack of bells and whistles, and Casio was listening.
The Casio Brigade was the first G’zOne to come with a full QWERTY keyboard for easy text messaging. So…now you could flip it open and send a text while…snorkeling? While…rock climbing?
The Brigade received mixed reviews and more criticism than its predecessors.
Because it was leaving its target audience (i.e. rugged, outdoor adventure types) and trying to compete against more fragile phones who boasted lots more functions and apps.
That was a fight it could never win.
Casio G’zOne Commando (smartphone)
The G’zOne Commando is Casio’s first smartphone in the series. It has a touchscreen made from nigh-invulnerable “gorilla glass.” And like the other Gzones, it meets military specs for resistance to wind, rain, dust, shock, impact, water submersion, extreme temperatures, etc.
But this is no iPhone, so again, you have to decide how much of a trade off you’re willing to endure to have a nearly indestructible smartphone.
The Commando is a great phone…nothing else on the market in its price range even comes close. But it is still designed to be a rugged phone first and a high tech interactive device second.
Casio has since released an improved version of the Commando, and it’s looking pretty sweet. If you’re looking for a military quality, yet stylish waterproof smartphone, then you should take a look at the new Commando RIGHT HERE.
If you work in a dirty, dusty, wet, muddy, rough-and-tumble environment, then you’ve probably run into a lot of problems and frustrations with typical cell phones. What you want is a rugged cell phone that’s built specifically for people like you. Pretty, touchscreen smartphones with a million apps are fun to play around with at the office, but out in the field you need something a little beefier…something waterproof…dustproof…shockproof…weatherproof…sunproof…drop-on-the-ground-ten-times-a-day-proof.
You need a tough phone that can get the job done (glass-jawed smart phones need not apply).
There are several such cell phones on the market built for rugged work environments, but many of them will cost you an arm and a leg. And we’re not even talking smart phones here. We’re talking about dumb phones (i.e. basic flip phones, no touchscreens, etc) from brands like Casio and Sonim with price tags well over $100. Those are fine for massive corporations with deep pockets, but small contractors need something this side of the $100 line.
Enter: The Mann Zug S
This hardcore little number was made for big boys and girls with big jobs.
First of all, the Zug S is built to survive Armageddon. When the bomb drops, nothing will be left kicking on this planet except cockroaches and Zug S cell phones. This is one tough phone.
It’s built to military grade specs for durability: IP67. In testing it’s dropped onto concrete several times, submerged in water for half an hour, submitted to extreme heat and freezing temperatures. This phone is a beast.
Oh, and battery life?
How about upwards of 16 hours talk-time and up to 600 hours on standby! Two weeks between charges is not unusual for the Zug S. That’s easily 4-5 times the battery life of your average smartphone.
Additional Specs and Features…
- Carriers: AT&T, T-Mobile and other GSM 850/900/1800/1900 network service providers
- 2” LED display
- Dual SIM card slots
- 5.04 inches x 0.87 inches x 2.34 inches
- 5.92 oz.
- 2 MP camera with LED flash/flashlight (yes, flashlight)
- Bluetooth 2.1 enabled
- Plays MP3, MP4, AVI, WAV files
Ideal for construction workers, fisherman, firefighters, emergency workers, soldiers, lumberjacks and anyone who works outdoors.
For many years my family and I have been using cell phones. I think they’re awesome. Throw in a decent built-in camera, and life is just peachy.
But then we got into smart phones. My wife got one. Then I got one, and our older son was soon to join in on that. Then we followed that up by getting our first tablet. Then a year later, we got three more. And then one more the year after that.
Oh yeah, we have three iPod Touch on top of that.
So altogether, our family of five is currently using…
- 3 smart phones
- 3 iPods
- 2 iPads
- 3 iPad minis
- 2 dumb phones
That’s a lot of tech. And we love them all. Well, the iPods don’t really get used much right now, but I’m keeping them for the future, because I know that we’re going to want them before too long.
These smart phones and data plans are just killing me. If I were to add up all the money I’ve spent on smart phones and data plans over the past 4-5 years, it would be enough to buy a brand new car! That is no exaggeration.
Dumb Phones Are Way Cheaper Than Smart Phones
Over the past year alone, I’ve spent over $3,000 for cell phone service for my family. That’s 3 smartphones and 2 dumbphones. Throw in the 3 tablets that we got “on sale” with data plans…and it’s well over $4,000 in just 12 months.
Holy mother of god that is a crap load of money that I will never have back in my checking account. If I was smart, I would’ve just bought dumb phones and iPads for all of us and no data plans…and I STILL would have over $2,000 of that money in my pocket. And that’s just ONE YEAR. We’ve been using smart phones for over 4 years now.
How smart is that?
We pay for Internet and wifi at home anyway.
We have free wifi available at almost every store and restaurant we go to.
Why the heck do we need to pay $300 for data for 6 devices when 90% of our web surfing is done on wifi anyways?
That makes no sense.
That is just plain dumb.
Dumb Phones Don’t Suck Your Brains Out Like Smart Phones Do
Having that constant Internet connection and dozens of apps in your pocket 24/7 does something else to you besides just sucking the money right out of your pocket. It also sucks your brain right out of your head.
Here’s a fun experiment…
Go out to the mall or something – maybe even a restaurant – and just sit there and watch the people around you for an hour or so. How many of them are stumbling around like brainless zombies, eyes glued to their devices, barely even noticing the world around them? How many almost get hit by cars walking through the parking lot or stepping out into the street? How many sit there at a table with friends or family, totally oblivious to the other person sitting two feet away?
How did we become so insane?
How did we become so out of touch with the world around us?
I love my Internet as much as the next guy. Hell, here I am at my laptop, connected to wifi and banging out another blog post. So I get it. The Internet is cool. I like it too.
But there’s more to life than your IG feed. There’s a whole world of interesting people in your own home, your own workplace, and in your own neighborhood, but when your attention is locked into your smart phone day and night…you’re missing it.
Dumb Phone + wifi = Best of Both Worlds
I have an iPhone and I love what it can do. But after a year and a half, I’ve finally realized that it’s just not worth the money I’m paying for it every month. I’m stuck halfway through a 2-year contract, and I want out really bad.
I held out for a few years before getting my first iPhone, and I loved it immediately. I wondered how I ever survived without it.
But that was before I started keeping track of the cell phone bills.
Now, I can’t wait to get out of this contract, downgrade to some cheap, rugged, little flip phone, and then dust off my iPod and just use that to take pics and surf the web when we’re out and about…if at all.
I also have that iPad tablet. So I mean, why do I even need a smartphone? I could just carry my dumb phone and iPod around with me, and maybe bring my iPad along too when appropriate.
If I have my wife and kids take the same approach, that’s almost $300 a month that we will be saving.
I am SO looking forward to that.
Paying $300 a month for a service that you can get for free is just not smart.