The biggest smartphone fails of 2021

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Eric Zeman / Android Authority

I’m pretty sure 2021 didn’t turn out as some envisioned. We enter the year with high hopes, that’s for sure. Pretty much anything should have been better than 2020, right? Unfortunately, 2021 did not live up to its potential. Covid continues to plague the world despite the arrival of vaccines in late 2020. Additionally, a handful of companies in the tech industry managed to lose their way with hardware, software, and other aspects of their businesses.

In this article, we explore the myriad ways tech firms screwed up the dog over the past 12 months. Here are the biggest smartphone failures of 2021.

Life is no longer good for LG’s mobile business

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David Imel / Android Authority

To who Android Authority we like competition. The more companies that make and sell smartphones, the better. That means we hate to see any company pack it up and drop it, but that’s exactly what LG, a longtime industry stalwart, did.

Further reading: The best LG phones you can buy

Citing years of financial losses for the mobile unit ($ 4.5 billion!), LG announced on April 5, 2021 that it would definitively exit the smartphone business by July 31. The writing had been on the wall for some time, it just took LG a long time ago to read it. The company explained that it would instead focus on its remaining business units, including appliances, televisions, smart home equipment and other verticals.

LG’s mobile ambitions date back to the 1990s. It launched into the public mind with popular feature phones like ENv and Chocolate and then entered the smartphone space with notable devices like the G series and Nexus 4.

LG always intended to forge its own path.

If there’s one thing the company should be reminded of, it’s taking risks. LG always intended to forge its own path, despite fierce competition from its rival in the country, Samsung. We only need to look at the modular LG G5, the dual-screen V20 or the rotating display of the LG Wing to show its ambition.

Despite your best efforts, we sadly said goodbye to LG this year, making it one of the top smartphone failures of 2021.

Microsoft Duo takes two

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David Imel / Android Authority

It takes something special to land Android AuthorityThe smartphone list fails two years in a row, and yet Microsoft managed to do just that.

The original Microsoft Duo, a dual-screen folding phone, was a disaster from front to back. The hardware was missing important features and the software was even worse. In fact, the phone had yet to receive Android 11 in December 2021, despite the availability of the phone and the software on the market for over a year!

Further reading: Microsoft Duo review

The company looked to rectify its mistakes with Microsoft Duo 2, but still managed to really come up short. Microsoft updated the hardware in the right way with notable improvements across the board. There are no real complaints there. However, what is supposed to make the device unique is the dual screen arrangement. Two 5.3-inch panels combine to create a larger 8.3-inch screen for an expanded workspace. The problem is that the large gap between the two halves of the phone interrupts this workspace. Few apps have been updated with real support for the larger screen footprint. Plus, relying on individual displays for anything makes you feel cramped due to their smaller footprints. In other words, there is still no compelling use case for the Duo 2.

Rounding out the downsides are the hefty $ 1,499 price tag and the extra $ 129 you have to spend to get Microsoft’s compatible stylus. The Duo 2, despite its improvements, is simply not a competitor to the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 3.

Samsung’s move to fold the Note

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The Samsung Galaxy Note series is one of the most popular of the Korean firm every year. Hordes of pen-crazed mobile device owners hope to update their monster whiteboards with every iteration. It wasn’t going to be in 2021.

See also: Samsung Galaxy Note 20 review

To be fair, Samsung set us up. The company hinted for nearly a year that it might have outdone the Galaxy Note. The phone, normally announced in August or September, didn’t materialize this year and we know exactly why: Samsung is fully invested in its line of folding.

Samsung announced the Galaxy Z Fold 3 and Z Flip 3 with much fanfare last summer. N