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I’ve used Android phones for 10 years, I hate them the most

I’ve been using and reviewing Android smartphones for at least a decade, and during that time, I’ve spent time with a huge variety of devices that mostly fall into three distinct categories: good, acceptable, and bad. But what about the ones that really moved my feelings in a negative way? Phones that elicited a guttural visceral response? I’m not talking about the people I love, but the people I love Honestly hated.

Here are the six models that bothered me the most over the past 10 years of smartphone use and review, and the reasons why they made this list.

Google Pixel 4

pixel 4 xl backlight coming out
Julian Chocato / Digital Trends

I might start with the phone that a lot of people like, but I don’t really like it. The Pixel 4 was released in 2019, and it did a lot of things right — notably its excellent camera and 90Hz screen. These aspects and the power of the Qualcomm Snapdragon 855 processor helped people bypass the miserable usage time of the 2,800mAh battery, which would regularly last less than a day.

That’s not why I hate her. I hate the Pixel 4 because of how it looks. It’s easily one of the weakest and least attractive phones I’ve seen, with almost no creativity in the design whatsoever. Flat on the back, flat on the front, with massive bezels around the screen. Google even managed to make the glass back look cheap and unpleasant. The names given to the colors—Clearly White, Just Black, Oh So Orange—by a team of marketers who thought they were amusing still make me cringe.

The fact that the Pixel 4 is so boring it ruined the phone for me. There he hides your light under the bushel, and then there he digs a six-foot hole under the bushel, buries the light, and then takes the bushel away too. The Pixel 4 was a great performer, so why not invest some effort to make it look good too? Fortunately, Google recognized this when it launched the Pixel 6 series, and continued the trend with the Pixel 7. We carry these phones around all day, every day. Getting them to look decent is just as important as good battery life, and the Pixel 4 fails at both.

BlackBerry KeyOne

BlackBerry KeyOne with keyboard.
Andy Boxall/Digital Trends

What a complicated history BlackBerry has with Android. The interesting BlackBerry Priv was the first Android phone from the brand, and it tried to combine what made BlackBerry phones special — the physical keyboard — with a big screen. By 2015, when the Priv came out, that big screen was a must for any smartphone. But in 2017, BlackBerry KeyOne hasn’t even started trying. With a small screen and physical keyboard, it was an obnoxious throwback to when times were different. BlackBerry’s attempt to appeal to angry fans who hated recent phones that have moved on, has already shown up on KeyOne.

The fact that it was so expensive upon release wasn’t the problem. The keyboard was, and given the brand we’re talking about, that was a crime. Obviously, ergonomics was a taboo word when designing this awful phone; It was poorly balanced, heavy and vulnerable. Combine this with the keyboard’s tiny sticky keys and the high spacer bars between them, and the whole thing was awkward and not rewarding to type on. The learning curve was ridiculous for anyone coming from a touchscreen.

What might have sparked a resurgence in interest in a phone with a physical keyboard turns out to do the opposite. It was an artifact made at a time when the excellent Samsung Galaxy S8 Plus was around, and only those who regularly groaned “things were better in my day” thought differently. BlackBerry knew it too, as proven by the vastly improved BlackBerry Key2 with its redesigned and more modern physical keyboard. KeyOne was a crushing disappointment at the time, and only the bad BlackBerry guys stood for it.

Astro Slide for computers

Andy Boxall/Digital Trends

While we’re talking about awful nostalgia-driven phones with keyboards, it’s time to talk about the 2022 Planet Computers Astro Slide. Simply put, it was such a bad phone that I couldn’t bring myself to take the time and effort to review it in its entirety. Old PDA-style devices try to appeal to people who fondly remember the good old days and then disappoint them with a sub-par keyboard, hideous design, poor build quality, and outdated buggy software.

I hated the other phones mentioned so far because they could have been so much more, but I hated the Astro Slide because it was really awful. Planet Computers is a small manufacturer, so you’ll always have some leeway. And if it had been a prototype or a work-in-progress I would have been more forgiving, but the people who paid for it were clearly on the phone. I still feel so sorry for all of them.

Huawei Mate 30 Pro

Huawei Mate 30 Pro.
Andy Boxall/Digital Trends

Huawei Mate 30 Pro 2019 was supposed to be an amazing smartphone. It came after the amazing Mate 20 Pro and the amazing Huawei P30 Pro, and it looked amazing. But it was the first device truly affected by Huawei being added to the “Entity List” by the US government. As a result, it did not come with Google Mobile Services. This immediately hurt the user experience, but perhaps even worse is that since Huawei phones and software have reached such a high level of polish, it was a shock when the Mate 30 Pro felt incomplete, suggesting final development had unexpectedly stalled. .

I didn’t specifically hate the phone. I hated that it was so cruelly snagged, that what could have been won’t come true, and that it foreshadowed a difficult time for the brand outside of China. I remember trying to get used to the new world he forced me to live in, but I couldn’t. The Huawei Mate 30 Pro was full of capabilities, but felt half-baked and awkward, and the company itself went into full damage control around it, which means I don’t remember it fondly. I hated that what could be one of the best phones of the year was stolen.

Nokia G11

The back panel of the Nokia G11, based on Lego.
Andy Boxall/Digital Trends

Cheap doesn’t have to mean terrible, but the 2022 Nokia G11 is close to being that bad. It’s another phone on this list that I haven’t been able to bring myself to fully review. This was not only due to the awful screen, creaky processor, aging, and bug-riddled software, but because it didn’t actually meet its big selling point: the three-day battery life.

I tried, it really did, but I only managed 2 days of battery life with general use. It’s not bad, I guess, but when a phone is so heavily touted as having three days of battery life, it’s not good at all. Take that promise away and the Nokia G11 was just a disappointing budget phone. I trash used the G11 and all its faults for a week, only for the battery to repeatedly fail to last longer than two days, and that made me disdain it.

palm (2018)

Palm phone (2018) in someone's hand.
Julian Chocato / Digital Trends

I saved the “best” for last. I haven’t reviewed it, but our one-star rating for The Palm (2018) is completely accurate, and even though I only used it for a few periods, it was enough. I called it “the dumbest product of the year,” which was probably a little bland. Initially launched as a companion phone to your flagship phone, it made absolutely no sense as a product. And that’s before considering its small screen, massive battery life, and poor camera.

I hated that the once-mighty Palm name was slapped on a silly device in an attempt to woo those who remembered the brand. I hated that it was marketed as a phone It prevents you from using your phone much. I hated that the name was basically Palm Tree, and I hated that the company had the audacity to charge $350 for it. Making it work on its own later didn’t stop it from being funny either. The Palm Tree is still a brainless product that I still can’t believe is more than a lazy scribble on a whiteboard.

That’s enough, I can’t go on. I will sit quietly with the Galaxy S23 Ultra to clear my mind and reset my blood pressure.

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