Texting Phones Take Over

EnV3 Have you noticed that the basic flip phone is fading away?

It seems so, anyway. When I upgraded from my not-always-charging, somewhat-falling-apart very basic personal phone, I happily chose a texting phone that’s as popular with the tween set as it is with adults these days. And I think that’s because those of us who rarely texted a few years ago are texting quite a bit, often with kids who’d rather text than talk.

I am a fast typer on a computer keyboard, but I never got fast texting on a numeric keypad, even when using the predictive text (or word) feature that guesses what you’re typing. Even when I was sure I edited my messages — because that’s what I do even though it doubles my text-writing time — I didn’t always text like a pro. Take this gem I sent to my husband awhile back: “Hi inn can you call me when wovet a minute?” That was supposed to be: “Hi hon, can you call me when you have a minute?”

Eager to not cause any more guffaws among my texting family members, I happily procured the LG EnV3 because it has a full QWERTY keyboard for the kind of texting my work-BlackBerrry-adept fingers are accustomed to.

My cell phone-buying decision is not surprising, since it turns out only one flip phone remained a top seller in 2009–the Motorola Razr v3. The much talked-about Apple iPhone was the year’s most popular phone, winning 4 percent of the cell phone market. But when the Nielsen market research firm looked at overall market share, LG (maker of several popular texting phones) and RIM (maker of all BlackBerry models) beat Apple because both combined to have most of the top-ten selling phones–all with full texting keyboards.

Have you (and your family) made the switch to texting phones? What do you look for when choosing a cell phone, and how has that changed from when you picked out your first cell phone and service plan?