17 September 2019

Kai OS RulezOne year ago, I advised against getting a 4G dumbphone with KaiOS. I am officially reversing that recommendation!

After purchasing a Nokia 8110 4G and playing with it for 1 month, I’m actually pretty speechless, and that IS rare.

Despite Google’s investment of $22 million in KaiOS over 1 year ago, Google’s services remain “add-ons”. IOW, KaiOS has NOT become Android Lite.

KaiOS is KaiOS, and there’s some Googley stuff on the phone that you can either use, or not. Better yet, you can block the Google apps from doing much of anything.

Even better, KaiOS is basically what PWAs will become on normal smartphones: KaiOS apps are actually just HTML5 + CSS + Javascript, running on a Gecko-based browser engine tied tightly to a small linux kernel.

The end result is the perfect non-Android, Google-enabled dumbphone. You can do stuff like Facebook or WhatsApp if you want, but there are NO Android-type apps.

You don’t even need to create a KaiOS App Store account to download apps – just click and go!

Note that the KaiOS app store is totally separate from Google’s Play store, and there are 130+ apps already available – and growing daily.

So, for your new dumbphone, give KaiOS a try!

Mentioned in vid:

That’s all, folks!

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4G Dumbphones: Why you should get one with KaiOS
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9 thoughts on “4G Dumbphones: Why you should get one with KaiOS

  • 17 September 2019 at 13:02

    your link for Nokia 8110 4G takes me to Amazon where this phone gets 2 ONE Star reviews! Hardly an endorsement.

    • 17 September 2019 at 13:24

      Yeah, you have to check to make sure it will work with your cell provider. “International” phones (GSM) should work in most of the world, but not on all US, Canadian, Japanese, or Australian providers.

      This one seems to have more happy campers: https://amzn.to/32Rs5hX

      Sometimes, you must go straight to your provider and use their “flavor” of the phone – if it’s available.

    • 25 February 2020 at 14:05

      I went from 1 video to the other and it went on…..very informative. Thank you

  • 17 September 2019 at 19:58

    If it’s from G00gle, can the phone be trusted to not have something built-in to it that tracks everything?

    • 17 September 2019 at 20:28

      It’s obviously difficult to know for sure, especially these days. But as far as I can tell, it’s WAY better than running Android on a smartphone where it’s basically 100% Google.

  • 19 September 2019 at 16:54

    I have this phone: https://www.amazon.ca/Alcatel-FLIP-Black-4044V-Unlocked/dp/B077F17R8H
    It is 4G with (2017) KaiOS before the google addition. It is considered a ‘burner phone’, ‘pay-as -you- go’ or Seniors phone.
    It has the weight of a non-working dummy phone and does not seem rugged, I did not find it that buggy as one reviewer said. Being able to remove the battery is a huge plus. I was able to import my address book via SD card and told my friends to expect short text replies.

    I still use an android phone for email, but am not signed-in to my google account, I use Proton mail.

    I keep my android phone in a RFID/ radiation blocking pouch which I have tested to block cell/wi-fi 100% when sealed. You can find them many places but this an economy one: https://www.ebay.ca/itm/Large-Size-Cellphone-RF-GPS-Signal-Blocker-Anti-Radiation-Shield-Pouch-Case-Pr/372559971844?ssPageName=STRK%3AMEBIDX%3AIT&_trksid=p2060353.m1438.l2649
    You can also just buy the nickle/copper sheiding material they use on AliExpress and make your own.

    • 29 March 2020 at 12:02

      yes. signal is the issue. I would love it.

      • 3 May 2020 at 16:38

        Agreed, KaiOS needs a Signal app. I looked into porting Signal to the Light Phone 2 and the phone’s developer said they had contacted the main Signal devs and was told that porting it “wasn’t possible”. But I am pretty sure this had to do with Signal’s encrypted voice calls, which requires AES hardware support that the Light Phone 2 does not have. Personally, I am only interested in the encrypted text messaging, and as someone else pointed out, WhatsApp uses the same text backend as Signal, so it should be possible to port that to KaiOS.


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