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The Light Phone III is a cool minimalist phone, but is it worth the wait and price?

The Light Phone III will help you put your phone down and focus on what matters.

Published onJune 12, 2024

  • The Light Phone III is now available for pre-order.
  • The estimated delivery is January 2025!
  • The Light Phone III costs $799, but the pre-order price is $399.

The Light Phone III is now official, and the announcement comes as a pleasant surprise, considering we were beginning to doubt it would ever come. The company took six years to release the third iteration, but looking at the improvements, it may have been worth the wait.

I consider myself somewhat of a minimalist, so I can definitely appreciate a simplified smartphone like The Light Phone III. Like its predecessors, it offers a cut-down experience that should prevent you from staring at a screen for hours on end.

The device comes with a black and white 3.92-inch display with a 1,080 x 1,240 resolution, which simplifies visuals and extends battery life. And you likely shouldn’t even consider this a smartphone. It is really more of a dumb phone with more features than usual. It can do very few things. Software-wise, the integrated tools include a phone, alarm, timer, calculator, calendar, contacts, navigation, notes, voice memo, hotspot support, and an audio player. There’s no Facebook, Instagram, TikTok, games, or anything like that.

When looking at the hardware, we can see The Light Phone III is quite the upgrade over The Light Phone II. For starters, the newer version has a metal frame and a larger screen. The back can be removed to easily replace the battery, which is kind of revolutionary these days. It’s part of the company’s plan to help customers keep phones for longer, instead of replacing them often.

Other upgraded specs include the addition of NFC, GPS, 5G, a fingerprint reader, eSIM, USB-C, and a 1,800mAh battery. While that battery may not sound like much, it’s twice the size of the predecessor’s, and that one had an estimated battery life of up to three days. We’re not dealing with resource-intensive specs here, and the screen will use much less battery than your fancy smartphone display.

We also like the small details. The Light Phone III has cameras, and the manufacturer has integrated a two-step shutter button, like those in real cameras. There is also a scrolling wheel, which might prove to be convenient for many of you. Oh, and if that NFC addition caught your eye a mobile payment solution is in the works. It just won’t be available in the beginning.

Are you ready for your digital detox? The Light Phone III is pretty cool. I kind of want it, too, but there are some pretty significant downsides to consider. For starters, it is by no means cheap. The official MSRP sits at a whopping $799. Call me crazy, but I think a minimalist phone should have a minimal price. At nearly $800, this will be as expensive as a base Samsung Galaxy S24 or Apple iPhone 15. And while those who pre-order it now get it discounted at $399, shipping is set to begin in January 2025. Not to mention, there are also plenty of budget phones that cost about that much.

Whichever way you cut it, and no matter how much I like the idea of The Light Phone III, it’s hard to justify the price or waiting time. If you think it’s for you, though, you can pre-order it straight from The Light Phone’s website.

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