My dad’s old cordless phone was a mixed blessing. The ‘cordless’ part was great because it was easy to use anywhere in the room, but, like most of the cordless units available, the phone and its charger base were lightweight — the charger cord weighed so much more than the base that the phone was often pulled onto the floor.
The old phone had the standard slot-in-pocket seating for the charger; Dad often had problems getting it into the base. The base tended to slide around while he was trying to place the phone, and it wasn’t all that easy to get the handset to sit on the pins correctly.
I’d been musing about these difficulties for awhile when I saw this phone at Target. I thought at first that it must be a traditional phone — i.e., one with a cord — since most of the self-styled ‘deco’ phones aren’t cordless, and they’re often displayed without the handset cords. A check of the handset (no slot for a cord) and the box proved that this one really was cordless. I snapped it up, and trotted it over to Dad’s so he could try it out.
It turned out to be a Good Thing. There are a frightening array of buttons, but, unlike most, this phone is designed so that only one button is essential: the ‘talk’ button that turns it on and off. It’s clearly marked, larger than the other buttons, and front-and-center, so it’s hard to miss. The number pad is small, as it pretty much has to be when it’s on a handset, but the buttons are raised a little more than most and well-defined; Dad has no trouble using them to ‘dial.’
The base is fairly heavy — a lot heavier than typical single-handset cordless phones. It’s too heavy to be knocked easily off anything. The handset is just about perfect — heavy enough to feel solid, not so heavy that it’s tiring to hold. Charging it is much easier, too — it just requires setting the handset on top of the cradle, where it glides almost automatically onto the charger pins.
Dad likes this phone much better than his old one and the adjustment time from introduction-to-use was zero. I suspect he likes the shape of the phone, too — this is what a phone should look like.
I added egrips to the handset, because they make it easier to hold just about anything.
Here’s the bad news: I can’t find this phone anywhere on the Internet. Target doesn’t have it online, and neither does anyone else, apparently. Your mileage may vary, especially if you have, say, fifteen hours or so more than I do to sort through listings for phones. I’m posting this article anyway because I think this phone is brand new, and because there may be others out there offering similar advantages.
Here’s the information for this one: It’s a GE Designer Series Contemporary Handset Model 27901FE1 or 27901FE1-A (depending on which part of the box you believe). The URL printed on the box leads here (after you skip all the Flash garbage), but, as of this morning, there’s no listing for this phone on the site. The model numbers listed on the website suggest that this phone got to the store before someone updated the posted product information, so it’s possible the phone may appear there eventually.
It probably won’t help, but the Target SKU is 44319 60644 7.
Around $50 (USD), because plastic this good just costs more