Tech YouTuber says ‘Bust of the Year’ Solana Saga ‘a horrible idea’

One of YouTube’s biggest tech reviewers has heaped criticism on Solana’s Saga crypto phone, taking aim at the device’s “weak” camera, display, and battery.

Marques Brownlee, who boasts 18 million YouTube subscribers and more than 6 million followers on X (formerly Twitter), included the Saga in his 2023 ‘Smartphone Awards,’ naming the device ‘Bust of the Year.’

The end-of-year round-up features some of the biggest names in the smartphone industry, with gongs being handed out to household names such as Samsung, Apple, and Asus, alongside slightly more niche brands such as Honor, OnePlus, and the Nothing Phone.

However, while rival handsets celebrated accolades in categories including ‘Best Big Phone,’ ‘Best Camera,’ and ‘Most Improved,’ Solana’s controversial gizmo was given a resounding ‘thumbs down.’

In handing over “the award you never want to give,” Brownlee began by saying, “It is actually genuinely hard now to get a bad phone. Most phones, no matter what price point you’re at, are either going to be really good for the money or okay for the money. But there was one bad phone this year.”

He then went in hard on the Saga. “There is actually no price that I would recommend anyone buys this phone,” he warned. “Buying this phone is like buying a timeshare. It might seem like a good idea for two seconds but the second you actually do it, you realize how horrible of an idea it was.

“You could tell because of the story behind it that it wasn’t going to go well.”

Not content with roasting the device on YouTube, he added in an X thread, “No amount of #BONK or Cryptosaurs could save this phone. It’s a shame this ceramic build was wasted on a weak camera, display, and battery.”

He finished up his damning verdict by saying, “You can find defenses of this phone, but if you’re not already a $SOL holder, they’re meaningless.”

Read more: Solana Saga: The DeFi phone you don’t need

Solana Saga sold way below expectations

Earlier this month, it was revealed that Solana has only sold a tenth of the Saga phones it needs to sell to decide whether or not it has a core user base.

Speaking to Unchained, Solana creator Anatoly Yakovenko confirmed that the company has sold somewhere in the region of 2,500 phones but needs to shift between 25,000 and 50,000 before developers start to come on board and create applications for the handset.

According to Yakovenko, there are internal discussions happening within the company to decide the best course of action but he hinted that the phone’s future may be as a much cheaper secondary device for iPhone users looking for a smart wallet. Yakovenko himself says he uses an iPhone for work and his Saga phone as his “NFT phone.”

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