Forget about the iPhone 6. Dutch designer Ingmar Larsen has helped create a new phone that is shatterproof, battery-free and toilet-bowl resistant.
Sure, it doesn’t have all the fancy features of an iPhone — say, the ability to make and receive calls — but Larsen says it’s better. His product, dubbed the “NoPhone,” lets you actually communicate with people.
“Nowadays you see people staring at their mobile phone in social situations,” Larsen told The Washington Post. “They forget about the social contact, the things going on in the world.”
The NoPhone is an antidote to “smartphone addiction” (an epidemic severe enough to merit its own WebMD page). Manufactured via 3D printer to be the exact size and weight as an iPhone, the NoPhone operates as a kind of “smart phone placebo” — it has the comforting heft and feel of an Apple product, without the distracting e-mail notifications, Internet access and phone-call-making capabilities.
With the NoPhone, people can feel safe leaving their real phones at home, and the product’s sleek design saves them from that “unsettling feeling of flesh on flesh” when closing their hands.
Conceived as a joke late in July by Larsen and his friends Van Gould and Ben Langveld, the NoPhone quickly gained traction online. To his bewilderment, Larsen started getting requests from people all over the world for NoPhones of their own — it turns out there’s a sizeable demand for a small, rectangular object to clutch while carrying on a conversation with the person sitting across from you.
So Larsen and his friends turned to Kickstarter to fund the mass-production of their creation, which they plan to sell for 20 euros (about $26). Since it was launched last week, the campaign has garnered 31 backers and raised only 1 percent of its 68,000 euro goal.
But the NoPhone team isn’t too concerned. They have another trick up their sleeves — the free selfie mirror sticker upgrade.
“Share selfies with your friends if they’re standing behind you,” boasts the Kickstarter announcement. Users can even add a “verbal hashtag” by “synching your brain and vocal chords.”
How do you like them apples, Apple?