Sure, you have a smartphone, but did you know that your fun times are only one small segment of its life cycle? This app presents four mini-games each representing different aspects of its creation, sale, and disposal. The first mini-game takes place in the Congo, where the mineral Coltan (columbite–tantalite) is mined by child slave labourers under watch by armed guards. Next, it's off to the Foxconn factory in Shenzhen, China, where the player, using a suicide net, tries to catch despondent workers attempting to commit suicide after working 36-hour shifts by flinging themselves off of the building's roof. Then it's off to the Pear Store, for a brief visit to the first world and its problems — where a store manager attempts to meet the frenzied demand for the store's smartphones by rabid customers storming its front entrance. Finally, the game whisks players away to Pakistan, where a grubby family dismantles obsolescent tech gadgets rolling by on a conveyor belt, extracting the e-waste's precious mineral value in an environment of harsh chemicals and acrid, carcinogenic smoke without the aid of protective gear.
Credits (iPhone version)
10 People (6 developers, 4 thanks)
Average score: 57% (based on 3 ratings)
Average score: 3.4 out of 5 (based on 7 ratings with 0 reviews)
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Apple pulled the game from the App Store hours after it had been approved, citing four App Store code violations:* 15.2 Apps that depict violence or abuse of children will be rejected * 16.1 Apps that present excessively objectionable or crude content will be rejected * 21.1 Apps that include the ability to make donations to recognized charitable organizations must be free * 21.2 The collection of donations must be done via a web site in Safari or an SMS
The developer contests the latter two, and as for the first two, he remarked that he needed to think a while to figure out how to "[P]roduce a new version of Phone Story that depicts the violence and abuse of children involved in the electronic manufacturing supply chain in a non-crude and non-objectionable way."
On the other hand, the game is still available on Google Play.
Related Sites +
Interview: Molleindustria On Phone Story's 'Objectionable' Message
Exclusive interview to Paolo Pedercini, <i>Phone Story</i> developer's head, on the controversial removal of the game from Apple's App Store.
Phone Story homepage
Official website (English)
- MobyGames ID: 52893
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Game added by Pseudo_Intellectual.
Game added September 17th, 2011. Last modified February 22nd, 2023.