Did you know: These are five of the cheapest phones ever made
In early 2013, Nokia announced the most affordable phone it had ever produced – the Nokia 105. It had a color display, an FM radio, a splash-proof keypad, a long-lasting battery, and even a bunch of pre-loaded games, which made it a great pick for buyers on a really, really tight budget. And apparently, the formula worked. The phone sold by the truckloads in developing markets, where it retailed for a bit over $20.
The Nokia 105, however, isn't the cheapest phone that has ever existed. This title once belonged to the Vodafone 150 – a basic phone with a 5-hour talk time, an LED flashlight, and a monochrome screen the size of a (very small) postage stamp. But hey, what more could you expect out of a handset costing under $15? Launched in 2010, the Vodafone 150 was sold in India, Turkey, and parts of Africa.
The Gongkai phone, which can be bought in China, is another dirt-cheap handset. It is also far from the prettiest gadget we've ever seen, but its price of about $12 compensates for its lack of appeal. Surprisingly, the phone isn't as dumb as it may seem. Driven by a 260MHz processor and 8MB of RAM, it has a quad-band GSM radio, a passive OLED screen displaying 2 colors, and Bluetooth connectivity. What's more, throwing a microSD card in there turns the Gongkai into an MP3 player.
Going further down the price scale we meet the Alcatel OneTouch 1010, which launched in the UK not long ago. Its price? Just £5 (~$8) when bought on Pay As You Go with T-Mobile. This gets you a color display, a flashlight, battery providing 4 hours of talk time, and 3MB of storage space – enough to hold a handful of MP3 ringtones. The phone also has a blacklist feature preventing specific numbers from bothering the user.
And to wrap this list up, we bring you the Hop-On Hop1800, which could easily be referred to as the iPod shuffle of cell phones as it had no screen. It was released for a price of only $10, and you were promised $5 back if you returned the phone for recycling. Marketed as a disposable cell phone, the Hop1800 could only be used to make phone calls. Or as a paperweight, of course.