Flipping the Script:
The Resurgence of Flip Phones

Flipping the Script: The Resurgence of Flip Phones

September 7, 2023

Have you observed the recent comeback of flip phones, also referred to as clamshell phones? Back in the 2000s, flip phones and slide phones, now known as feature phones, were incredibly popular before the emergence of BlackBerrys and iPhones. Subsequently, the smartphone wave swept over the North American market, introducing sleek, button-free designs and ever-expanding screen dimensions.

Why a Flip Phone?

Flip phones garnered attention for their simplicity and extended battery life, distinguishing them from many contemporary smartphones. Some individuals valued the tactile experience of answering and ending calls by flipping the phone open and closed. However, particularly significant is their appeal to the Gen-Z cohort. This appeal stems from their desire to step away from smartphones and embrace “dumber” flip phones as an alternative.

Within the community of “dumb” phone users, a noticeable trend has emerged – one that involves employing technology with greater intentionality owing to the inherent limitations of these devices. Embracing a phone with restricted capabilities seems to foster a more mindful and purpose-driven approach to engaging with technology. A viable strategy for curbing the excesses of screen time and incessant scrolling is the complete elimination of tempting digital distractions.

On TikTok, the hashtag #flipphone has amassed an impressive 650 million views, indicating a substantial interest. A significant portion of these videos explore the aesthetic allure of owning a technology piece from the 2000s, aligning with the ongoing resurgence of the “Y2K” style.  Essentially, it’s a nostalgic throwback for millennials and a fashion statement for Generation Z.

Is it cheaper?

Are flip phones necessarily cheaper? Well like everything it depends. If you are looking for ones that are similar to the 90s or early 2000s styles, you can easily find phones for less than $100. However if you want, you can spend a pretty penny on one, such as Samsung’s Galaxy Z Flip 4 which retails for over $900. 

The resurgence of flip phones brings with it a blend of nostalgia and modern-day allure. With their simplicity, extended battery life, and distinct tactile experience, these devices have captured the attention of both those seeking a purposeful break from smartphones and those embracing the fashionable throwback trend. As conversations about screen time mindfulness gain momentum, flip phones provide a tangible solution, inviting users to engage with technology more intentionally. The convergence of generational preferences, from millennials cherishing the past to Generation Z embracing the iconic style, adds a unique dynamic to the resurgence. While the permanence of this trend remains uncertain, the renewed interest in flip phones showcases their enduring appeal across the technological landscape.


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