Cell phones have become a part of everyday life, and they often transform into the perfect fashion accessory to enhance your everyday look. From the popular Instagram flat lay of a variety of beautiful Apple products laying next to a pretty latte, to the futuristic Samsung Galaxy 9, it is not hard to find a beautiful mobile phone. Most smartphones look pretty similar to one another, for the most part, obviously many are pining after the classic iPhone look as most phones today have a giant clear screen and shiny metal backs. However back in the day, this look was not as coveted and well-known as it is today, which means some cell phone creators had to get really creative with their designs. Compared to the hits we have at our disposal now, there were a lot of misses going on in the early 2000s. The need to create something innovative and exciting was often met with some pretty terrifying results. Check out this list of the ugliest cell phones from years past.
Samsung NPH-N270 Matrix
During the height of The Matrix franchise popularity, Samsung decided it would be a good idea to infuse all that monster-esque green light into a cell phone creation. The idea was for the phone to look futuristic and make you feel like you were using something from an action movie. The irregular shape, bulky edges, and horrendous green light ended up making this phone seem more like a prop from Battlestar Galactica, you know, after they lost all their “good” technology to the Cylon invasion.
Vertu Signature Cobra
Vertu creates luxury cell phones, even though having a cell phone is already a luxury. With this fun and flirty little device, you would be sure to turn heads while talking on your irregularly shaped and tacky colored cell phone. The phone was modeled after the Cobra, a beautiful animal, but as it turns out, not so beautiful of a phone. To add insult to injury, this “luxury” phone’s price tag would set you back $310,000… in 2006.
Another swing and miss by Samsung, this time in the form of a swiveling mp3 player. The idea of this phone was meant for people who loved music, and the name is perfectly suited to that standard. However, the swiveling top made the device hard to handle. “Oh, you can just flip your phone open to answer a call? Well, give me one second here while I turn this device into the proper position…” Bad design, all the way.
Virgin Mobile Lobster
Much like the Vertu Signature Cobra, the name of this device says a lot about how it is going to look. It doesn’t look exactly like the creepy, crawly, delicious crustacean, but it does have a “lobster claw.” The design of the phone makes absolutely no sense. Though that may be because it carried a lot of storage space, had a place for a micro SD card, and included a 1.3 MP camera. Those were some great features in 2006 and they might have caused some techies to overlook its obvious exterior flaws.
This phone looks like a mix between a Tamagotchi and the first ever Game Boy. The idea was to create a plastic cell phone that is blue, then finish off the look with some rubber buttons and subtle dalmatian print. Overall, it was just a little too much; the design scheme went over the top and then some. Easily this was one of the ugliest, most absurdly designed cell phones ever.
Siemens Xelibri 6
I imagine this (male) mobile phone creator was fired immediately after simply lazily recreating a woman’s compact and adding some buttons. The outside looks like an ordinary compact, and the inside is designed like a generic birth control pill packet.
Motorola StarTAC Rainbow
This brightly colored flip phone has been aptly named the rainbow for its misuse of color. Instead of taking a minute to look at a color wheel to find some complementary colors, Motorola just decided to take the worst colors and slap them on a plastic clamshell. The saddest part is that the phone could have been very appealing if there was just one person on the design team who hadn’t fallen asleep during the color theory lecture.