As Shakespeare so eloquently put it, “a rose by any other name would smell just as sweet,” but I’m not sure that the phrase applies so much in today’s world of fashionable technology. After all, no-one wants to reel off an embarrassing name when your buddy catches a look at your shiny new smartphone. Even some of the best phones on the market can be questionably named, and there’s a fine line between a catchy, marketable product and a complete naming disaster.
In no particular order, here are ten of the worst named smartphones that I’ve ever come across.
BlackBerry’s foray into the Android market really deserved a better name than the Priv. We know that Blackberry is the one of the best when it comes to enterprise security and privacy, but lopping off a few letters certainly doesn’t make it sound cool. To be honest, saying the name out loud makes feel like a bit of a “Priv”. Hopefully the company will do a little better next time around.
OnePlus 1 and Oneplus 2
There’s something a little ironic about picking a kindergarten maths naming scheme for a handset that’s meant to break the mold and overthrow the big boys in the playground. Unfortunately for OnePlus, things haven’t really worked out that way, yet. While OnePlus isn’t a bad name for a company, surely they could have come up with something a little more imaginative than numbers for their handsets. It’s only going to become sillier with each successor, but perhaps the company will change tack now that it have the OnePlus X.
HTC One M8 Harman Kardon
HTC’s partnership with Harman Kardon to upgrade the audio in the One M8 was pretty awesome for the music enthusiasts out there, but the tongue twisting name certainly could have been a little better thought-out. I guess this handset just goes to show that partnerships can be a tricky business, especially when someone want to make the most of some brand recognition. Sometimes keeping things simple might just work out a little better.
Samsung Galaxy S2 Epic 4G Touch
If you thought the last one was bad, here’s a mouthful for you – trying saying Samsung Galaxy S2 Epic 4G Touch after a beer or two. While a number of devices have stupidly long names, I’m looking at you Sony Xperia Z3 Compact Tablet, Samsung really took the cake with this one. Not that they learned too much from their past mistakes though, the Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge Plus doesn’t exactly roll of the tongue and neither does the old Samsung Galaxy Grand Prime Duos TV. Get it together Samsung.
Yezz Billy 4.7
OK it’s not an Android phone, but this one is just too good to leave out. This Windows Phone was named for, you guessed, it Microsoft founder Bill Gates, but it sounds more like something that his mother might have shouted downstairs to him at some point during his childhood. Just imagine having to explain what your new Yezz Billy was called to your buddies. No thanks.
ZTE Iconic Phablet
ZTE certainly had high ambitions when it named the Iconic Phablet, but unfortunately the smartphone ended up being a passable 5.7-inch 720p mid-range smartphone. The Iconic Phablet certainly did nothing to knock other supersized smartphones off their leading positions. I suppose that the Facebook Home powdered HTC Status deserves an honorable mention for committing similarly needy crimes.
That’s not the only problem with the name though. I’m not quite in the phablet term haters club, but even I admit that this name sounds far too much like your dad trying to hop on the latest slang he overheard you say that one time. We’re officially at cringe factor 10.
LG Thrill Optimus 3D P920
If we’ve established that overly long winded and self-indulgent names are up there as the worst, then the cardinal sinner has to be the LG Thrill Optimus 3D P920. Sure, un-boxing a new phone can be a thrill, but to stick it in the title, that’s more than a little desperate LG.
Motorola Citrus / LG Cookie Wink Style / LG Chocolate Touch
No no no, smartphones don’t need to be named after foods, and both LG and Motorola should be ashamed at these model names. I might be putting it near my mouth, but that doesn’t mean that I want to eat it! The Citrus is pretty bad, but LG’s choice of names for some of these older handsets are truly weird. What the heck does “Cookie Wink Style” even mean? As for the Chocolate Touch, well I’ll leave that up to your own minds.
HTC ChaCha & HTC Salsa
If food is pretty bad then naming your phones after Latin dance styles is even more peculiar. Perhaps that sort of thing was in fashion back in 2011, but the name certainly hasn’t aged well. AT&T at least had the foresight to rename the ChaCha to the HTC Status when the phone landed in the US, but it tough to say exactly how much better, or should that be worse, that name is than the original.
Motorola went straight down route one when naming this rather unconventional phone with a flip out keyboard. Rather than conveniently popping down, the Flipout’s keyboard quite literally flips out from around the side of the phone. As a double whammy, this name perfectly describes what you’re likely to do while faffing around with the rather odd fold out keyboard, so perhaps Motorola was spot on with this one.
There you have it, ten of the strangest, funniest and down right worst-named smartphones that I’ve ever come across, and I’m sure there are many more. Do you have any of your own personal favorites to add?