Feeds

Mobe-maker flogs self-designed phones ... to your KIDS

Custom phones for custom people

Choosing a cloud hosting partner with confidence

UK mobile phone company OwnFone is pitching a £55 handset which can only call up to 12 pre-programmed numbers, betting that the ability to create your own buttons and colour scheme will blind users to the price.

OwnFone is a brand spun out by CyCell, which already provides customised handsets locked to the Vodafone network for Parkinson's sufferers and Addison Lee employees, but with OwnFone the company hopes to break into the mass market and has provided a cheery video showing how the process works.

The idea is to create your own credit-card-sized handset with two, four, eight or 12 pre-programmed buttons. The phone can receive incoming calls, but has no keypad so can only dial and loaded numbers and can't send (or receive) text messages at all.

It hasn't got a screen either, just a couple of buttons for volume and one to switch off the phone (which promises a shelf life of over a year, in the hope of appealing to the glove-compartment demographic), making it simple to use and of limited value to a thief.

The product isn't explicitly pitched at children, though that's clearly the target audience. The company reckons an OwnFone might be ideal to take clubbing or somewhere else you might want a disposable mobile, but a Nokia 100 would have a better battery life for a lot less money, and for a tenner less than an OwnFone one could get the infinitely-more-attractive Motorola Gleam.

The OwnFone dose have that retro feel, and limiting calls to a handful of labelled numbers might have value to some people though that can equally-well be done on the network side these days. At more than half a ton (plus a minimum of £7.50 connection charge) you'll have to really like the look of the phone, or really hate LCD screens, to make it worthwhile.

Internet Security Threat Report 2014

More from The Register

next story
Download alert: Nearly ALL top 100 Android, iOS paid apps hacked
Attack of the Clones? Yeah, but much, much scarier – report
Broadband sellers in the UK are UP TO no good, says Which?
Speedy network claims only apply to 10% of customers
Virgin Media struck dumb by NATIONWIDE packet loss balls-up
Turning it off and on again fixes glitch 12 HOURS LATER
Yahoo! blames! MONSTER! email! OUTAGE! on! CUT! CABLE! bungle!
Weekend woe for BT as telco struggles to restore service
Fujitsu CTO: We'll be 3D-printing tech execs in 15 years
Fleshy techie disses network neutrality, helmet-less motorcyclists
Facebook, working on Facebook at Work, works on Facebook. At Work
You don't want your cat or drunk pics at the office
Soz, web devs: Google snatches its Wallet off the table
Killing off web service in 3 months... but app-happy bonkers are fine
prev story

Whitepapers

Why cloud backup?
Combining the latest advancements in disk-based backup with secure, integrated, cloud technologies offer organizations fast and assured recovery of their critical enterprise data.
Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
How to determine if cloud backup is right for your servers
Two key factors, technical feasibility and TCO economics, that backup and IT operations managers should consider when assessing cloud backup.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
The Heartbleed Bug: how to protect your business with Symantec
What happens when the next Heartbleed (or worse) comes along, and what can you do to weather another chapter in an all-too-familiar string of debilitating attacks?