Editorial: iAm So Sick of Phone Names and Boxes

>Every now and again, I like to post some opinions on this site. They usually come from a place of frustration, and sadly this time is no different. For those who don’t know, I sell phones for most of the main carriers. Over the past few years, I’ve sold countless models of phones, and I’ve noticed a few things they all have in common: Their names suck and their boxes suck.

First off, the naming thing. There are 3 types of phone names: Random Letters and Numbers, the Random Adjective, and Just Completely Random. The first one I shouldn’t have to explain why its terrible. Nothing quite says “Buy Me!” like the Samsung SGH-T259. The Random Adjective is usually just a straight up lie. The HTC Droid Incredible is not only an incredibly long name, but it’s really not that special, and I certain don’t feel incredulous when it’s in my hand. The Just Completely Random can be just as deceptive as the Random Adjective, and is therefore even more obnoxious. When I first saw the HTC Imagio, I thought it was a joke. Sadly, it was not.

Then there’s the boxes. Here’s your average box: On the outside, there’s a picture of the phone, maybe the carrier’s logo, the manufacturer logo, and the name of the phone. You open up the box, and there’s the phone, with the phone’s name on a screen protector (except for AT&T’s “No Texting And Driving” ones). Under that is the instruction book, battery, charger, maybe headphones just thrown in there. They’re all the same, with a few exceptions. For example, the Samsung Instinct’s box was killer. You had an outside glossy sleeve. That slid off to reveal a matte cardboard box with “Instinct” etched in. The box was in two pieces, no hinge. You lifted the top half off to show the phone almost framed by black cardboard. Below that was all the extra goodies, neatly boxed in cardboard cubbies. It was gorgeous. The best box ever? This guy:

You had to plug the box, which looks like it came from 2001: A Space Odyssey, into your computer, and when it pops open, fog comes out. Fog. Now obviously not all phones can come with a mini fog machine, but they can certainly be sexier. And when a company does try to go different, we end up with something like the Cup of EVO Soup:

Now let’s talk about the one product that does it all wrong: The iPhone. First off, not many people know, but the “i” stands for “individual”. Exactly what is “individual” about a phone that, up until recently, couldn’t even have a user-defined wallpaper? The iPhone is known as the least customizable device, and yet its name acts as if it was made specifically for you. The box follows the minimalistic style of the device itself. That’s fine. But it’s the same formula. Picture of phone: Check. Phone right under lid: Check. Other stuff just sitting there under that: Check. Yawn, yawn, yawn. Apple should embrace its old motto and think a little differently on it’s packaging.

So please, phone makers, start using more memorable names. The Mustang is an iconic car. It’s the Mustang. Its memorable, it gives a feeling of the power and style of the car. The LG Sentio tells you nothing about the phone. The Pantech Pursuit showcases that it’s behind the front runners. Your boxes might not seem all that important, but it is the first impression of the phone. Awesome hardware deserves an awesome packaging and an appropriate moniker.

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