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Is Hop-on's £10 disposable Phone already too expensive?

California-based Telecom Company Hop-on is readying a range of £10 mobile phones that aim at securing the very bottom end of the mobile phone market.

Hop-on managed to keep the price of its phone so low by ditching the LCD screen and keeping features as low as possible; in fact, apart from an internal tracking device that could have many uses, the disposable phone will only be ... a run-of-the-mill phone.

More than 150,000 of these gadgets have already been ordered apparently with more coming on but already there are clues that while the hop-on could be a winner in the US, it might not fare that well in Europe.

In Europe, the overwhelming proportion of phone contracts come with a recent mobile phone for free and Europeans are now embracing lower-cost roaming when travelling to Europe.

Then, the growing popularity international SIM cards like Sim4Travel (opens in new tab) mean that you can save as much as 80 percent of your calls made abroad.

There's also more low cost mobile phones flooding the market thanks to expanding third world and emerging market demands.

We managed to track down five widely available £10 mobile phones from well known manufacturers and packed with features like FM radio and even a digital camera.

Another significant obstacle to the £10 could be the fact that Europeans, unlike their American counterparts, are greener by nature and the idea of throwing away a phone could raise some eyebrows.

Désiré has been musing and writing about technology during a career spanning four decades. He dabbled in website building and web hosting when DHTML and frames were en vogue and started writing about the impact of technology on society just before the start of the Y2K hysteria at the turn of the last millennium. Following an eight-year stint at ITProPortal.com where he discovered the joys of global tech-fests, Désiré now heads up TechRadar Pro. Previously he was a freelance technology journalist at Incisive Media, Breakthrough Publishing and Vnunet, and Business Magazine. He also launched and hosted the first Tech Radio Show on Radio Plus.