Chris Hannah


Minimalist Phone #

Marc, from, writing about digital minimalism in the context of a phone, and the experience of using a budget Android phone (Nokia C2 2E):

A few months on and the C2 is the most fun I’ve had with a smartphone since I got my first one over a decade ago.Using a phone that’s this budget I don’t feel constrained, I feel focused. There’s just enough space that I can install the odd app I only use occasionally but not so much that anything that vaguely takes my interest can be installed. Battery life is better than expected but just short enough to make every unlock mindful of its purpose. In the rare moments where web pages or apps lag, it’s a reminder that this is probably something better done on a desktop. And to top it off, in a strange twist, this will also be a phone with the best chance of longevity given that replacing the battery is as simple as popping the back off.

The whole piece was interesting, because I for one, haven’t thought about digital The whole piece was interesting, because I for one, haven’t thought about digital minimalism in regards to phones. Except for using fewer apps. But this is more about being constrained physically.

And it sort of resonates with me, because a while ago I decided to use an iPhone 7. And I also found it to constrain me with what I could do. It was a smaller screen, the battery life wasn’t that good, and it was running an old OS, so some modern apps wouldn’t run on it.

Despite that, I would also say I felt more focused because of the constraints. It slimmed down the list of tasks that I felt the phone would be useful for and made it more of a tool for specific uses.

I eventually went back to using an iPhone 13 Pro, but the idea of using a more lean device still interests me.

The Ultimate Minimalist Phone #

Greg Morris, on what he thinks is the best minimalist phone:

After experimenting with older devices, I felt unfulfilled and sometimes caused more hassle than they are worth. Recently, I tried a ‘dumb phone’ in the Punkt MP02, which left a lot to be desired considering its £300 price tag. Couple this with the realisation that I need to be able to access some apps occasionally (How on earth do you do banking nowadays when the branches are hardly open?) – I was stuck. That was until I realised I had the best minimal device to replace my phone the whole time – my Apple Watch.I’ve been in love with the Apple Watch, particularly a cellular version, for as long as I can remember. It allows me to leave my phone at home when I don’t need it but still be contactable, yet I couldn’t see its real usefulness until I took a step back. I truly think this could be the best minimalist approach to a world that seems to demand a smartphone.

It’s an interesting idea to have the Apple Watch be your “phone”, and after reading Greg’s piece, it sounds like a very viable option.

I’m not an Apple Watch wearer anymore having switched to a “real” mechanical watch recently. However, this idea of a more discreet device which performs the fundamental functions of a phone without most of the distractions is very attractive to me. I guess it’s somewhere in the middle of being cut off from the world, and being wired-in to the internet.