The Return of the Flip Phones

Why Flip Phones are Back in Style and The Must-Have Flip Phones to Satisfy your Retro Cravings

As a 22-year-old Gen Z, it is interesting to see how rapidly the trend changes and how our nostalgic desires overtake the popular culture scene. 

I have used a flip phone in my early teen years and know and loved the simplicity of it, and the rest of the generation agrees as our tech are slowly taking a step back into memory lane while they incorporate the same aesthetic features into today’s more advanced smartphones. 

Based on my brief research and a couple of informal interviews with my friends, people’s desire for these flip phones are for their simple functions, a break from the rather crazy world of social networking, but with the same features of a smartphone, what exactly is the edge of having a folding or flip phone outside of its the aesthetic function?

Flip phones with foldable screens, such as the infamous Samsung Z Flip, explore the future of screens. The flexible screen allows for a more immersive experience by giving its users a subtle yet expressive motion as one uses the phone. Aside from its obvious compact feature, the motion of opening a flip phone contributes to the phone’s exchange value rather than its general use-value.

But what is exactly is “exchange value”?

Exchange value is an entity’s added cultural or social value. A product may have a high exchange value regardless of its use-value or simple utility. A great example would be designer handbags, a bag has its basic purpose: to carry things. But the drastic difference between a $5000 bag and a $50 bag says a lot about its exchange value. 

I asked my friends why they would want the Samsung Z flip and the most common is: “it’s cute!”. Foldable screens allow users to satisfy their nostalgic sentiments while not limiting themselves to the basic functions they used to have. 


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