okay we're talking about fails

15 of the biggest smartphone fails

starting off as concerning

and ending up just tragic so a couple of

months ago samsung held their galaxy

note event

they launched the note 20 ultra probably

the best phone they've ever made but at

the same time also

the normal note 20 which it's probably a

bit far to call it a scam but

it's not far off that it's a thousand

dollar phone

and nothing about it justifies that

figure it's got a 60 hertz 1080p

display it's made of weaker glass on the

front and plastic on the back

and unlike just about every other

samsung phone this one

has no expandable storage it's arguably

a lower spec than the company's own

699 galaxy s20 fe for one reason

that phone exists just for the purpose

of making the note 20 ultra

look good samsung wouldn't have dared to

launch this standard note 20 on its own

they know full well that it would have

got slaughtered by the media but

by barely mentioning it at the launch

event and just keeping it as a phone to


next to the note 20 ultra on the website

it makes the price of the ultra

look very reasonable by comparison so

3 out of 10 fail pretty sneaky not


and on a similar note our good friends

at oneplus

a company who've spent years just

building up a reputation for being

selective for putting all their efforts

into just one or two phones at a time

building hype and making sure they

deliver and this kind of love and

attention that they can give

because they're focusing on just a few

models means that oneplus has built

one of the most committed fan bases of

any phone company

so what did they go and do contradict

the entire philosophy

they dropped two phones just completely

out of the blue the nord n100

and the nord n10 no real hype or launch

events the phones are confusing

like where did the numbers 10 and 100

come from your main phones are still on

the number eight right now

and why is the n100 the lower end

version and the n10

is the higher end version who named

these but also i think the most

important thing is that

they're just lazy phones these are

reskinned versions of oppo devices

and i think the lower end n100 somewhat

gets away with this because it's still

good value but

this n10 shouldn't exist like for the

sake of saving just 50

versus the normal oneplus nord you lose

a lot of stuff you lose the oled display

for an lcd you lose the premium glass

back from glossy plastic you get a worse


and less ram it's not a disaster but

they're just two

confusing copied and forgettable phones

that signal a downwards transition for

the company

so solid three out of ten fail in my

books okay

we're really sharing the love this year

let's talk about microsoft

a company who's never really got it

quite right when it comes to phones

and i carried on this year with the

surface duo

it's a foldable phone which on first

glance might actually look like it

justifies its 1400

price tag it's incredibly sturdy and

slim and it can flex itself into

countless orientations

it's just this is the perfect example of

a phone that's trying to run before it

can walk

microsoft is trying to reinvent the game

here but the fundamentals that the phone

stands on

are crumbling literally it's got a

plastic frame and it's so thin that

these phones are cracking you do get a

flagship chipset which is good but

oh wait no it's the snapdragon 855

announced in 2018 paired with just six

gigabytes of ram

yeah specs aren't everything but for a

1400 phone that's built

to do at least two different tasks at

the same time

you're gonna feel it and it's all topped

off with one of the worst speakers on a

modern day phone and

possibly the worst camera like you know

how most modern day 1400

phones have triple camera setups or quad

camera setups with

massive 108 megapixel sensors well with

the surface

you have one camera the selfie camera

would you use both to take selfies and

as your main camera

for everything so next to modern day

flagships that's a bit like trying to

run around and film using your webcam

but what i didn't like about this is

that microsoft was well aware of the


but they kind of tried to manipulate the

narrative like when they sent this

surface duo to reviewers

do you know what they said to them they

said in your initial unboxing videos

you're not allowed to turn the phone on

which means that basically the one thing

that you can show

is design the main good thing about it

so yeah

sky high price way too many compromises

and a

sneaky way of trying to hide them this

is a 4 out of 10 fail right here

what would you label as the wackiest

smartphone you've seen this year

for me it would probably be the other

one for me it would probably be the lg

wing a smartphone that looks like a

normal phone until you flip it out and

what is that a widescreen horizontal

display followed by

an almost square panel below it now it's

probably a little early to say that this

is a failure

but i can already tell you now this is

not the form factor of the future

like if this lg wing becomes the next

big thing

i will wear a set of wings in a video

i'm sure you'd like seeing that but the

point i'm getting to here is that

while the lg wing does seem

revolutionary and it does have a very

cool opening mechanism

this is actually lg repeating themselves

the way i see it this wing is actually

the spiritual successor to the 2011 lg

double play just chop that keyboard off

and it's the exact same concept

and that was very much a bad phone

it was clunky kind of cramped the specs

were compromised

just to have this dual screen design and

also the dual screen itself was labeled

by every media at the time

as a gimmick and the reason i think this

is interesting is that a lot of the

issues we saw on the old double play

are are kind of mirrored in the new wing


the double play gets a very respectable

4 out of 10 fail rating

the new wing we'll see

okay you might have heard of marshall

they're an audio company pretty well

known for their headphones and speakers

and guitar amps but in 2015

they had the idea to build a phone and

to be fair they did

nail the audio side of things it had a

built-in dac for lossless music

it had a software equalizer that would

instantly work across all music services

on the phone

and get this not one but two headphone


it's just that they made this phone so

music focused

that it basically became just like a

really good mp3 player the chipset

sucked it had two gigs of ram

you wouldn't game on this it had a very

poor 8 megapixel rear camera

and a 2 megapixel front one that it's

probably better if we don't talk about

this was the first phone that marshall

ever made but the reception was so poor


it was also the last phone they ever

made so very respectable

four out of ten fail again for this one

speaking of reception though

how about a phone with none in 2012 the

world was introduced

to the samsung galaxy camera

with the tantalizing promise of full

android functionality plus

a full point-and-shoot camera feature

set and it did have

impressive specs samsung gave this a

sensor literally twice the size of its

latest galaxy s3 phone

and no less than 21 times optical zoom

that's still more than double what the

absolute best android phones can do


plus running a camera on android that

makes so much sense

you could take a photo exit the camera

app and send it to someone on gmail

straight away but the issue this thing

had was that

it wasn't particularly good at either of

these things as a point-and-shoot camera

it was just

average and as an android device well it

couldn't make phone calls so even though

it could do almost everything your phone

could do

the fact that it couldn't call means

that you still got to keep a separate

android phone

with you anyways which kind of defeats

the purpose

so 4 out of 10 fail it's one of those

things that sounded really good in

people's heads

but when it launched it had poor

reception in

both senses of the word i say that but i

would love to see something like this


like the combination of modern day

computational photography with a proper

camera sized image sensor

that could be crazy you've got to hand

it to samsung for experimenting though

because just a year after that alongside

their galaxy note 3 in 2013

samsung also dropped a curved variant of


the galaxy round this is crazy it's the

first phone ever with a flexible amoled


but oh wait no it's just a galaxy note


but with a smaller battery no s pen and

a price tag one and a half times higher

it was severely underwhelming i think

the concept has merit

like your hands are curved your face is

curved why not build a curved phone

but they just didn't do anything with it

like they made this feature called the

roll effect

where you could roll the smartphone

towards you to check your notifications

but i think for a lot of people all

that's gonna do is just remind them how

they can't use their phone on a flat

surface so

four out of ten fail again this inwards

curved concept just

didn't catch on and funnily enough just

two years after this

samsung started inverting it almost

every one of their flagships post

2015 curves outwards and speaking of


if you're enjoying this video a sub to

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out of this world okay number eight

this is where we start to get more well

tragic so i should start this by saying

that asus now

seems to be a very level-headed company

they've really understood the

fundamentals of what makes a good phone

and as a result

they've dominated the 2020 leaderboards


it's been quite the journey to get there

enter the pad phone

a smartphone that you can buy with this

companion display

and when you want a bigger experience

you slot the phone in

and bam you've got a tablet the benefit

being that instead of having to have two

separate devices with two separate sets

of internals

this uses the processing power inside

the phone for both

so they can make a tablet that's

effectively just a shell for it

so it's cheaper well that sounds kind of

reasonable but we've actually seen a lot

of phones over the years

with the same core concept this idea of

trying to kill two birds with one stone

they all fail why well see the very

nature of creating a product that's

trying to be

two products is that you're almost

limiting yourself specifically to an


who's looking for both of those products

like as a phone

the pad phone was good it was solid but

its main standout feature was the fact

that it could transform into a tablet

so if i didn't need a tablet there'd be

no point buying that phone

and even if i did need a tablet this is

not the best way of doing it

i'm better off buying a dedicated tablet

as opposed to one that's

constrained by the fact that it's got to

be running on smartphone

hardware so this was a fail but to be

fair if this was just

a one-off product that they tried and

then it didn't land it wouldn't have

been so far up this list

what makes it worse what pushes this to

what i'm calling a five out of ten fail

is that it took aces three years and

many many iterations of this concept

with the same core issues again and

again before finally realizing that

it just wasn't going to stick now you

might remember a video i made a while


on the valk one aka the first smartphone


to be free to use so no sim card

no cost to call people unlimited data

available everywhere

how well when you bought one of these

volk phones

the idea was that it would come bundled

with a volk router bit like a wi-fi

router but with the ability to package

up data

and fire it up to two miles away this

data could only be picked up by

volk phones which have a specialized

receiver but where this gets really

interesting is that

as well as a receiver each one also came

with a transmitter

which can send that signal further for

other people to get online

so what this company was proposing was

effectively a crowdsourced version of

the internet

like with each extra user coming in

instead of the signal getting more


it's actually improving but

nothing happened they've been taking

orders since early 2019

and they still haven't delivered a

single phone their website says coming

2020 which is

starting to look a little unlikely and

it does make you doubt

whether they've actually built this

phone or not because there's not a

single video

of it the entire website is done with


seems a bit sus to me so i'm giving this

one a six out of ten fail

in a best case scenario you're getting

two year old hardware in the worst case

this is a scam okay in 2012 another

company thought that they had a

revolution on their hands

mozilla the creators of the firefox

browser they had a vision for an

operating system

completely powered by the web so instead

of localized apps that you could

download and then run offline

everything could be powered by the

internet they called it firefox os

like even the camera app on these phones

was just a web page

it was just a web page that could access

the feed from your camera

the benefit of doing this well it's the

fact that pretty much every developer

already knows how to make internet apps

and once you've made an internet app


you don't need to reprogram it

separately for different platforms

or make different versions for devices

of different levels of power

you just build it once and you're done

it's just that

yes this was a developer's dream but

it's just that from a consumer


the benefits weren't as clear like it

would have been a pretty niche group of

people who are like

ah do you know the one thing that i want

on my phone is a

smaller selection of apps that require

an internet connection to work properly

so firefox os had a reasonable start

because it's something that the hardcore

audience had been dreaming about

but then it very quickly lost momentum

and it just kept getting worse and worse

and worse

until the only life left in firefox os

was the fact that it powered

panasonic televisions and i think at

this point they were just like no you

know what

get in the bin

six out of ten fail so much promise and

so much money

but it went nowhere it wasn't all for

nothing though because from the remnants

of firefox os

rose kaios and that has been successful

it's an even simpler software but it's


simple that it's managed to squeeze into

a currently uncontested niche

it's not fighting android or ios it's

used to provide some smart functionality

to 30 phones you know sometimes


just work when two companies that are

that are so aligned come together

every now and again a miracle is born

this ain't that we're talking about the

garmin phone the combined efforts of

both asus

and garmin and it is one of the worst


ever made actually you can have a buzzer

already it was basically them trying to

make both a smartphone

and a sat nav together and credit where


garmin are one of the leaders in

navigation and the phone did come

bundled with a car charger and a mount

to install it

the navigation part of this wasn't the

problem the problem was that navigation


just a small subset of what your

smartphone can do anyways

smartphones are like gps systems but

ones that can also do a thousand other

things too

and so trying to make a smartphone

that's based on

being a sat nav is a massive downgrade i

don't think i've ever seen a worse

android home screen experience

with just massive garish icons and no

traditional launcher to make your own

the phone's design suffered with

absolutely enormous bezels

and no headphone jack plus google maps

available on every phone was improving

way faster

and so it was only a matter of time

before the one thing this had going for


navigation ended up being a disadvantage

so easy six out of ten fail this one's


hall of fame territory right here but

you can always do worse

do you remember a company called doogie

three years ago they had a bit of a

one-hit wonder with a phone called the

doogee mix

it was basically a rip-off of the xiaomi

mix but they somehow managed to offer a

semi-bezel-less design

for closer to 170 which was pretty


but it's just that from this point they

went from questionable too bad

to an absolute sham they did everything

they possibly could

to capitalize on the success of just

this one phone they released a doogee


2 which was clearly meant to be a

different phone and then after seeing

how well the mix did

they just relabeled it because you can

tell it doesn't even look like a mix


but then even funnier than that in 2018

doogie held a press event to show us

what was coming in the future

and oh dear they showed off a doogee mix

3 with a pop-up camera

a doogee mix 4 which is almost

completely display on the front and used

a slider mechanism to hide the camera

they showed a flexible phone and get

this a transparent

phone did a single one of these products

actually materialize

no no they didn't unless by transparent

they meant

invisible the only one thing that we did

get was a prototype of the doogee mix


but when i say prototype i don't mean a

phone that was almost ready to go

i mean a phone with a paper cutout

instead of a display in hindsight

i don't think doogee had any intention

of releasing these products i think they

just thought

we finally have some media coverage

let's just make the most outrageous

claims possible

to keep it as long as we can so i'm

giving doogee

a seven out of ten fail they clearly had

something with that first mix but

within a year doogee very quickly became

dodgy and i would stay clear hey here's

a name you haven't heard in a while

sony ericsson this was a collaboration

between two companies

sony who was largely an entertainment

company at this point

and ericsson who was one of the bigger

phone manufacturers

it was sony's way of all of a sudden

being able to manufacture phones on a

large scale

and it was erickson's way of gaining

access to sony's walkman music brand and

cybershot camera brand

as well as just their design because i

mean erickson's own phones were

stylistically challenged we'll put it

that way and it did work

you probably remember the sony ericsson

walkman phones they sold

numbers but very quickly you know this

in 2007

the iphone just flipped the market

upside down and

this duo of a company just wasn't agile

enough to respond

i think sony realized at this point that

erickson was kind of weighing them down

with their focus on feature phones

as opposed to smartphones like their big

attack on the iphone as a duo

ended up being the sony ericsson say

show a phone that

yes had an awesome 12 megapixel camera


literally nothing else going for it

we're talking one of those resistive

touch screens that you kind of need to

use a stylus with and an aging operating

system with no apps called

symbian within just a few years sony

ericsson was making

250 million dollars in loss in a year

so sony did eventually buy out

ericsson's 50

share to just become sony mobile but

the damage was kind of done by this

point they were way behind

so i'm giving sony ericsson a

prestigious 7 out of 10 fail

it wasn't the end for sony phones but it

definitely set them off on the wrong


okay now for something that smartphone

makers have been doing

since the beginning of well smartphones

it's deceptive it's disingenuous but

that also makes it really funny when uh

when people find out about it faking


which i would never do

how many times have you gone onto a

phone website looked at the camera

section and thought

wow you took that on a phone no

no they didn't i think pretty much every

manufacturer has done this at some point

basically just layered a photo taken on

a dslr camera

onto their phone screen and they won't

usually specifically say oh

this was taken on our phone but they

know that's what people are going to


it's a bit like if i sold you a car

online but then instead of sending you

the actual car

i just sent you well this

oh you thought the photo on the website

was the thing i'm sending you

don't be silly thanks for 30 thousand

dollars but

there's even been a lot more explicit

cases like earlier this year huawei was

promoting a bunch of photos taken on

huawei phones

but someone watching it noticed that

wait a second that shot looks a bit

familiar oh wait yeah it was taken by a

professional photographer on a

3 000 dslr huawei is probably the

biggest culprit of this

a couple of years ago they even had a

full advert for their nova 3 phone

where you can clearly see this guy

reaching out with the phone to take a


the entire commercial is about how good

the camera of the phone is

not a single photo taken in that

commercial was taken on this phone

and it's very obvious like if you're

gonna cheat at least

do it subtly or probably my favorite

example is samsung

back in 2018 they launched a phone

called the galaxy a8 star

and they were so proud of this phone's

ability to capture photos

that they didn't show it modesty

at its finest what they actually did was

paid this lady 250

for a commercial license to use her

photo taken on a dslr

but there's more they then chopped her

out of that photo

and put her on a different background

also not taken on the phone

and then to top the entire thing off to

showcase how good

their portrait mode was they pulled open

a photo editor selected this new

background that they'd just thrown in


and blurred it and they didn't think to

just once put a little disclaimer saying

hey by the way guys

this photo wasn't taken on this phone as

if it was just

obvious i'm giving this one

a seven out of ten fail kind of made

even better by the fact that the girl

who was in the photo

actually realized what happened and

publicly outed something for it

okay it's time for number one and just

as a heads up if your favorite fail

isn't on this list

that's probably because there's four

other episodes in this smartphone fails


so do check them out they're very fun

i'll leave them linked from here

so in first place is a company called


this is huge so you've probably heard of

qualcomm they're the number one supplier

of chips for our phones

but they're not the only supplier of

chips in second place

is mediatek and they've been caught

cheating so it all started when a


noticed that some mid-range phone

powered by a mediatek chipset

was performing surprisingly well on

benchmarks they realized that its gaming

performance and its app performance was

like here but as soon as you open a

benchmark it was all the way up here

so was this mediatek just trying to make

their chips seem more powerful than they


well yeah this reviewer then dug a

little further

into the firmware of the phone and he

found a piece of code in it

that had been distributed by mediatek

which made these phones running mediatek


able to detect the benchmark was running

and dial up their performance to the

absolute extreme

now mediatek defended this they said

well hey this is standard practice

everyone has high performance modes

but the difference is this wasn't a

normal high performance mode that would


in any demanding application this was an

extreme performance mode that even

disabled warnings against high


this chip was being pushed so hard that

it couldn't possibly be sustained for

any period of time

so it wasn't representative of the

performance you could get

in apps plus unlike normal high

performance modes which would just

detect when the load is high

and turn on the code for this extreme

performance mode that the reviewer


they called it sports mode it

specifically had the names of the

benchmarking apps

so it was built with the purpose of


so then i thought this was quite clever

the reviewer then tested the phone

on an altered version of one of the

benchmarks he changed the code of the

benchmark slightly such that

the phone wouldn't realize it was a

benchmark and sure enough straight away

the performance was 30 lower this is bad

this is as bad as

cheating on emissions tests with cars

you've got to remember that

mediatek is so popular that there's a

good chance the phone that you're using

has a mediatek chip in it so

i'm giving this one an 8 out of 10 fail

this isn't to say it happens across all

mediatek chips and it's not to say you

should never buy a phone with a mediatek


but it's definitely yet another reason

to take benchmarks

with a heavy pinch of salt okay if you

enjoyed this video do consider

subscribing it's been

absolutely ages in the works my name is

aaron this is mr who's the boss

and i'll catch you in the next one



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