The Worst Phone I Own

I own far too many phones because I'm a nostalgic nitwit and I never manage to get rid of the old ones. Some were broken and replaced, and some were lost to carrier-switching. Two phones I purchased just for fun. One was a Galaxy SII, for toying with PostmarketOS. The other is the worst smartphone I've ever owned: the Alcatel OneTouch Pixi Pulsar.

The Pulsar is small, slow, has a locked bootloader, is stuck on Android 4.4.2 (3 years old when I bought it) and is locked to Tracfone. Why did I buy this piece of junk? Because it cost $4.83, after taxes, shipped overnight. I know carriers discount devices so you'll buy their service, and it's a piece of junk, but still.

I tried a few of my main apps. Tusky is incompatible, but Fedilab runs okay. Slide for Reddit works alright but has some bizarre behavior when switching between activities (or fragments or whatever they are). The only camera is obviously hideous and rear-facing. During an unrelated nostalgia kick I read the entirety of two Goosebumps books using Librera Pro, which worked well.

Anyway, it's pretty terrible. I had some fun experimenting with it, as a what's-the-worst-hardware-I-can-live-with test, but it's pretty rough. If it had a little more space and the software was a smidge newer, I might be able to get by.

That said, consider giving this experiment a try. I wouldn't recommend going and buying something you don't need — it feels wasteful, now — but if you've got an old phone in a drawer somewhere, pull it out. Boot it up and see how it compares to your current device.

And then, if you're anything like me, sell the damn thing.


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