NoPhone Air: the Latest iPhone Aimed at Cellphone Addicts - Dispatch Weekly

September 21, 2016 - Reading time: 8 minutes

 Entrepreneurs Chris Sheldon and Van Gould have promoted the ‘NoPhone Air,’ the phone that does absolutely nothing at a technology conference in Canada earlier this month, as an affront to digital addicts that cannot exist without their phone.

The Latest Advanced NoPhone Air

Taking the gadget from a silky black bag, Chris Sheldon and Van Gould released the new NoPhone Air at the Fireside to hundreds of enthusiastic techies at a summer camp, in Western Ottawa, where there were no cellphones allowed.

Chris Sheldon said, “We are very proud to introduce the least-advanced NoPhone ever,” which is a plastic rectangle, similar to a smartphone.

Photo Credit:
Photo Credit:

NoPhone Air: Has Sold Over 10,000 Models at $10 each

Even though the the model phone is plastic with nothing inside, it has sold more than 10,000 in the last two years at $10 each, showing there is a real interest in not relying on smartphones.

Photo Credit: thenophone-com
Photo Credit: thenophone-com

Sheldon and Gould are part of a smartphone-resistant counterculture. Inspired by a New York rooftop bar where people were glued to their phones, they put forward “a fake phone for people addicted to real phones.”

How Long Do You Spend on Your Phone?

A recent study by has revealed that the average person spends 90 minutes a day on their phone.

Although this does not sound like much, this amount up to 23 days a year and 3.9 years of the average person’s life spent staring at a phone screen.

Furthermore, Nottingham Trent University conducted a survey, using those aged 18 -33 year olds to find that the average smartphone users’ looks at their phone once every 10 minutes, which is roughly 85 times a day.

There is even an app called BreakFree that helps maintain a controlled digital lifestyle by monitoring your phone and app usage.

Siri Says: Take a Break from the Digital Life

The voice actor, Susan Bennett, who plays Siri, the iPhone’s virtual assistant, has said that digital life should be decreased:

“Their minds are somewhere else, or they’re staring at their phones. And they don’t know how to relate to other humans,” adding, “Everybody is running around taking 15 million pictures of their own face.”

Fireside Conference: a Tech Gathering without Digital Devices

The Fireside Conference was thought up by two Toronto lawyers, Steven Pulver and Daniel Levine in 2015 after going to tech conferences and feeling as if smartphones were dominating peoples attention.


Although initially worried about the turn out, without cellphones people have had to interact more to find directions, connecting more authentically.

Mr Gould said, “I think we had more eye contact this weekend than probably any time since we were children.”

Going Back to Basics With Simple Phones

Due to phone distraction there have been a number of non-smartphones hitting the market, designed to free up a person’s time.

Founded in 2008, Punkt is a relatively new brand of cellphones that are going back to basics.

Photo Credit: Punkt
Photo Credit: Punkt

For example, the MP 01, selling at just under $300 does nothing but phones and receives calls, texts and checks calendars on the screen.

Petter Neby, founder of Swiss consumer company Punkt said, “I think the ‘always on’ life is probably even worse than having a poor diet.”

He added, “Every day we are consuming more trash, and becoming more detached from real life and the ability to deal with situations head-on. Just look around, it’s a disaster – and the sociological issue of our times.”

The Light Phone by Joe Hollier also offers a simplistic credit-card sized cellphone that focuses on making and receiving calls, costing $100.

Hollier, 26, said, “Do I always want a computer in my pocket? Probably not?”

Would you buy a NoPhone Air for $10 or are you addicted to your cellphone?

DW Staff

David Lintott is the Editor-in-Chief, leading our team of talented freelance journalists. He specializes in covering culture, sport, and society. Originally from the decaying seaside town of Eastbourne, he attributes his insightful world-weariness to his roots in this unique setting.