over its 10-year history, The Verge has reviewed hundreds of products: smartphones that have changed the way that we communicate, take photos, and engage with the world; incredible laptops that pack the power of a gaming PC into a portable package; and consoles that have revolutionized how we play.
These are not those products, though. As The Verge turns 10, we’ve taken the time to look back at some of the highest highs of the world of consumer technology… but also the biggest duds that ended up on our desks.
Welcome to The Verge’s gadget hall of shame. Abandon all hope, ye who enter here.
What else could top this list other than the Red Hydrogen, which has the dubious honor of receiving the lowest review score The Verge has ever awarded? The phone was originally announced to breathless hype in 2018, with a list of specs so over the top, they almost sounded fictional. There was the “holographic display,” the promise of modular accessories that would drastically change how the phone could be used, and even the ability to pair the Hydrogen with Red’s cinema-grade cameras.
But after months of delays, what actually shipped was a gigantic, painful-to-use smartphone with outdated specs, mediocre cameras, and an awful-looking, blurry attempt at glasses-free 3D that bordered on painful to use — all of this while costing an astonishing $1,300.
The Hydrogen One was an attempt at making a unique kind of Android smartphone, but it only succeeded at making a uniquely terrible product from virtually start to finish: underpowered, overhyped, over-priced, late to market, and so bad that in its aftermath, the company’s founder decided it was a good time to retire and ended off Red’s phone ambitions entirely.