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How to build your own smartphone

Posted: , by Nick T.

How to build your own smartphone
If you want something done right, you have to do it yourself! Same applies to smartphones, which is why in this step-by-step guide we will show you how to make your very own smartphone.

Now, don't go away just yet, for that is not as difficult of a task as it sounds. All you need is some spare time and stuff you most likely have lying around the house. Besides, it will be a lot cheaper than pulling out your credit card and buying a fancy brand-name device, and the satisfaction from having a totally unique smartphone is something money will have a hard time buying.


Now let's get to work!

How to build your own smartphone
Here is what you will need:

  • Phone
  • Camera
  • Sketch pad
  • Pen
  • 2 pieces of string
  • Scotch tape


For our design we decided to go with a classic rotary dial device for that authentic old-school look. With a body made out of solid polycarbonate, it surely going to withstand the tests of time, and the metallic elements that can be spotted here and there give it a premium look.



Step 1


The first step is to attach the sketchpad to the phone with a piece of string. Just pass the string through one of the sketch pad's holes and tie it with a knot. Then tie the other end of the string to the phone's wire. You should end up with something like what you see in the images below. Our sketch pad features a beautiful image of Winnie the Pooh, which is going to serve as a wallpaper for our lock screen. Notice that the sketch pad will also serve as a contacts list and storage.


Attach the sketch pad to the phone with a piece of string
Attach the sketch pad to the phone with a piece of string
Attach the sketch pad to the phone with a piece of string
Attach the sketch pad to the phone with a piece of string

Attach the sketch pad to the phone with a piece of string



Step 2


Now it is time to equip our smartphone with a pen that we will input data with. Of course, it can also be used as a stylus. You attach the pen to the sketch pad with a string. Once you are done, you should have something looking like this:


Attach the pen to the sketch pad with the other piece of string
Attach the pen to the sketch pad with the other piece of string
Attach the pen to the sketch pad with the other piece of string

Attach the pen to the sketch pad with the other piece of string




Step 3


Attach a camera to the phone with scotch tape
Attach a camera to the phone with scotch tape

Attach a camera to the phone with scotch tape

The third step is to add a camera to the smartphone, and this is where the scotch tape comes in handy. Make sure you use enough so that the camera stays firmly attached. The camera that we chose is a classic analog point-and-shoot with a xenon flash, fixed focus, and f/2.8 aperture. The photos that it takes look more than decent, with a pronounced lomo effect - perfect for sharing with your buddies online!



Step 4


Customize your interface

Customize your interface

With a smartphone like this, you get to choose what kind of software will be installed. We decided to go with Android 6.0 Kit Kat, which we tricked out with a custom hand-drawn skin. Transitioning between home screens is silky smooth - all it takes is an upward or downward flip of a finger. 


But if Android is not your cup of tea, just "install" a different platform: iOS, Windows Phone, Symbian, MeeGo, even Windows Mobile in case you are feeling nostalgic. In any case, performance is guaranteed to be flawless, and any application that you throw at your smartphone will have no troubles doing its thing.



And that's it!


Now you are free to add whatever finishing touches you desire. Glittery stickers and dangling charms can be added for improved reception and improved 4G speeds. We personally installed a whole bunch of custom ringtones, including hits from Spice Girls, Hanson, Hatsune Miku, and one particular song from Rick Astley. Below you can check out some action shots.


Our custom made smartphone in action
Our custom made smartphone in action
Our custom made smartphone in action

Our custom made smartphone in action

39 Comments
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posted on 01 Apr 2012, 05:19 18

1. Sniggly (Posts: 7182; Member since: 05 Dec 2009)


Lol, good April Fool's article. I chuckled. :D

posted on 01 Apr 2012, 05:28 4

4. bobfreking55 (Posts: 866; Member since: 15 Jul 2011)


I was about to take this seriously, then I read your comment.

I forgot about April Fools. :))

posted on 01 Apr 2012, 05:47 2

7. Source (Posts: 1; Member since: 01 Apr 2012)


Page1- android, pg2- iOS, pg3- WP, pg4- Tizen, pg5 - Symbian, pg6- Bada, pg7- BB10,........pg100-windows xp!........................LOL!

posted on 01 Apr 2012, 07:46 4

16. JeffdaBeat (unregistered)


I'm gathering my supplies right now! f**k Apple and Google...

posted on 01 Apr 2012, 08:02

20. TROLL.ISAHA (banned) (Posts: 535; Member since: 28 Mar 2012)


Me 2. Thought they was about to show us
step-by-step tutorial, and the part's that you
could perhaps bye, and build you'r own....
I was so excited!!!! You muppets... silly April fooled me.....

posted on 02 Apr 2012, 01:30 1

37. Mario1017 (Posts: 336; Member since: 04 Sep 2011)


Wow lol, the same 1 person disliked every comment...

posted on 01 Apr 2012, 05:20

2. itiswhatitis (Posts: 423; Member since: 23 Jan 2012)


Nice one,nick!

posted on 01 Apr 2012, 05:25 14

3. ledbetterp3 (Posts: 467; Member since: 31 Aug 2011)


Just made mine.. How do I root it?

posted on 01 Apr 2012, 05:44 8

5. Nick_T (Posts: 153; Member since: 27 May 2011)


You forgot to put in the crystals.

posted on 01 Apr 2012, 09:15 5

27. ddxmms (Posts: 145; Member since: 09 Feb 2012)


i think the camera will be better than the one on the htc one x..
we are waiting for the full review.

posted on 01 Apr 2012, 06:12 9

10. the_s2 (Posts: 211; Member since: 22 Nov 2011)


Plant it in soil, and water it thrice a day. Will be rooted within 2-3 days. My guarantee.

posted on 01 Apr 2012, 07:55

19. TROLL.ISAHA (banned) (Posts: 535; Member since: 28 Mar 2012)


Hahahahaaa ha ha aha.....

posted on 01 Apr 2012, 05:47 9

6. bbblader (Posts: 583; Member since: 24 Oct 2011)


this is a better love story than twilight
and yes this is a smartphone

posted on 01 Apr 2012, 06:08 2

8. matrix_neo (Posts: 321; Member since: 03 Nov 2011)


That's we call smartphone evolution. LOL (^_-) I will build mine too but with android and windows phones os installed hehehe

Btw is that you Nick in photos?

posted on 01 Apr 2012, 06:11

9. the_s2 (Posts: 211; Member since: 22 Nov 2011)


Trolled!! :D PA, you got me trolled! :D

posted on 01 Apr 2012, 06:17

11. darktranquillity (Posts: 284; Member since: 28 Feb 2012)


Apple's soon gonna screw you with litigations for patent violation Nick, so stop thinking/laughing that you fooled us:-P

posted on 01 Apr 2012, 06:32 1

12. RaKithAPeiRiZ (Posts: 1379; Member since: 29 Dec 2011)


Galaxy Note 2

posted on 01 Apr 2012, 06:34

13. Non_Sequitur (Posts: 1111; Member since: 16 Mar 2012)


xD
I forgot it was April Fools until I read this.

posted on 01 Apr 2012, 07:22

14. lonestrider (Posts: 86; Member since: 31 Mar 2012)


I've read something similar to this.
lol. April fool.
I really thought you'll gonna teach us to make our own smartphone.

posted on 01 Apr 2012, 07:38

15. crankyd00d (Posts: 191; Member since: 17 Oct 2011)


Nice lol

posted on 01 Apr 2012, 07:49 1

17. 0o0blackstar0o0 (Posts: 86; Member since: 26 Oct 2011)


Fk i got excited ... i was thinking could choose all your parts like when you buy a laptop .

posted on 01 Apr 2012, 07:54

18. quesoesgrande (Posts: 217; Member since: 03 Aug 2011)


I am so going to make one and get rid of my current phone! Lol i thought u were serious so i had to laugh!

posted on 01 Apr 2012, 08:25

21. ivanko34 (Posts: 617; Member since: 04 Sep 2011)


My old mother has the same

posted on 01 Apr 2012, 08:26

22. dirtydirty00 (Posts: 266; Member since: 21 Jan 2011)


o thank god its april 1st. before i realized that i was about to jump on PA for writing teh most ridiculous dumb article ever seen.

posted on 01 Apr 2012, 08:54 1

23. Dragonshadowstorm (Posts: 8; Member since: 29 Nov 2011)


Nobody mentioned webOS... Okay :(

posted on 01 Apr 2012, 08:58

24. Gusto (Posts: 28; Member since: 20 Mar 2012)


you forgot the alarm clock...^^

posted on 01 Apr 2012, 09:05 1

25. beelzebug07 (Posts: 9; Member since: 28 Feb 2012)


He also forgot bluetooth, accelerometer, gyroscope, compass, nfc, proximity sensor... :-P

posted on 01 Apr 2012, 09:09 2

26. hepresearch (unregistered)


Haha... any good Boy Scout could add a compass, no problem.

Awesome April Fools article! LOL!

posted on 01 Apr 2012, 09:55

28. roscuthiii (Posts: 1873; Member since: 18 Jul 2010)


Are you spying on my family? My gf's daughter made me something like this a few years back for the holidays.

posted on 01 Apr 2012, 10:15

29. Henrik (Posts: 141; Member since: 18 Feb 2012)


Hahaha! I love it! ^^

posted on 01 Apr 2012, 10:55

30. Habib (Posts: 114; Member since: 26 Feb 2011)


LOL this was the funniest thing i seen in Phonearena

posted on 01 Apr 2012, 11:07 1

31. medicci37 (Posts: 711; Member since: 19 Nov 2011)


Would be great if we could actually choose what parts we want & have a smartphone built 2 our specs. I can already see myself writing PA to bitch about all the bugs on the Medicci phone !

posted on 01 Apr 2012, 11:15

32. cripton805 (Posts: 995; Member since: 18 Mar 2012)


This phone sucks... no keyboard...

posted on 01 Apr 2012, 11:51

33. bossmt_2 (Posts: 437; Member since: 13 Oct 2009)


Didn't include a modem, DO NOT WANT

posted on 01 Apr 2012, 11:54

34. ChiX017 (Posts: 308; Member since: 09 Nov 2011)


LMAO! good one

posted on 01 Apr 2012, 21:29

35. cripton805 (Posts: 995; Member since: 18 Mar 2012)


Whoever trolled this thread should be banned and has no life...

posted on 01 Apr 2012, 23:56

36. androidrockzz (Posts: 51; Member since: 04 Feb 2012)


51MP cam!

posted on 20 May 2012, 05:01

38. Sangeet (Posts: 232; Member since: 21 Apr 2012)


Nokia s40 phones would be better than this..LOL
just kidding, this is indeed the best smartphone ever made and samsung and apple even can't come close to it..
Again kidding

posted on 16 Oct 2014, 22:38

39. orangestrawberry (Posts: 1; Member since: 16 Oct 2014)


Just Wanted to say I read this article when it first came out and always though Kit-Kat would be a great name for android and now we have Android 4.4 Kit-Kat :D

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