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World’s largest working cell phone gets pranked

World's Largest Cell Phone is prank called

Outside Tribune Tower in Chicago today is a promotion by Cricket Wireless and Samsung. I know this because I work on the 14th floor of the Tribune Tower and all I hear today is the guy on the loud speaker, “Come everyone make a call on the WORLD’S LARGEST working cell phone brought to you by Cricket Wireless and Samsung.”

“WHO WHO wants to be a part of HISTORY? Who wants to step up and make the next call? Come on and make a text message with the WORLD’S LARGEST cell phone.” After hearing this about a HUNDRED times at work, we joked around how it would be funny to go down there and send a text from this phone; then we’d have the phone number of the WORLD’S LARGEST cell phone. But certainly they would have that phone number blocked or restricted, right? Of course they would. Of coooooourse they would…

I thought it would just be fun to go down and at least participate in this promo and have my coworkers hear me using the WORLD’S LARGEST cell phone. We can hear everything that is going on anyways, might as well have them hear me doing it.

After a short elevator ride down, I arrive outside at our court. There’s only one person in line ahead of me and he’s playing Wii bowling on the phone. He’s got a Wii controller in his hand and he throws a strike! FREE TSHIRT! I ask one of the cricket girls if the has a bowling app. She said, “no, only the world’s largest phone can do that.”

The Wii bowler gets his tshirt and i’m next up. The announcer dude asks me, “What’s YOUR name!?”

“Matt. and I would like to text my buddy from the world’s largest cell phone.”

“We have MATT here and he’s gonna text his buddy!”

One of the cool things is that the actual buttons on the phone work. And they are HUGE. I literally have to walk across the stage as I punch in his phone number. Then I punch in the text.. “Hey, Im on da wrlds bggst fon” Then they had me hit this big red button and BOOM! it’s sent. They hand me a free shirt. And i’m happy to have the experience.

But here’s where the story gets funny.

I go back up to work all happy having been a part of cell phone history. Upon arriving back at work, my friend says, “Matt, where were you? I called the phone back!”

I can’t believe he CALLED the phone back!

My buddy explains, “they were rather surprised, and kinda said off the phone, ‘I didn’t know we were taking incoming calls.'” Through bursts of laughter he continues, “Yeah, I asked for Matt and they said you weren’t there anymore. So I just kinda hung up after that.”

I still can’t believe he called the phone back. Granted, we joked about it before me going down there. That’s funny that I wasn’t there. They were looking for me. Actually, in retrospect that would have been cool to have been called back by the world’s largest cell phone.

There you have it. I am now in possession of the phone number to the WORLD’S LARGEST cell phone. What should I do with it? I’m tempted to txt them. “Hey, turn down the volume on your phone, your neighbors can hear it.”

Watch a video of the phone being made:

17 Responses to World’s largest working cell phone gets pranked

  1. Matt Maldre March 11, 2009 at 3:45 pm #

    By the way, the phone featured is the Samsung Messager. Retail was $199, now $149.99.

  2. Leigh Hanlon March 11, 2009 at 4:04 pm #

    I think you should call and see if Hugh Jass or Mike Hunt can come to the phone.

  3. Matt Maldre March 11, 2009 at 4:45 pm #

    Leigh came over to my desk and told me that I should send my story to someone. I said, “who?” and he had me look up this post to read his comment. So without realizing it, I read the names out loud, “Huge Jass and Mike Hunt.” And I said (seriously said it too), “Who are these guys?” Leigh turns all red and laughs as he motions me to walk into the hall. Then I realized what the names were. Haha! I fell for it! Good one, Leigh!

  4. Lisa Schryver March 11, 2009 at 6:03 pm #

    Matt! Haven’t you ever seen Bart do that on “The Simpsons”?

  5. Eric March 11, 2009 at 7:05 pm #

    Nice story! This made me laugh.

  6. Matt Maldre March 11, 2009 at 9:38 pm #

    Lisa S, yes. I am very familiar with this prank of Bart Simpson. It was funny how it completely flew by my radar, and I said out loud, “who is Hugh Jass and Mike Hunt.” I’m just glad I didn’t do it Mo style and say, “Can someone find me a Hugh Jass.”

  7. Matt Maldre March 12, 2009 at 10:30 am #

    Last night when they turned off the phone, I texted them right away with, “Hi worlds largest working cell phone. I can’t hear u anymore from my window at pioneer court. Are you recharging the phone?” Then this morning I was just lamenting to some peeps about how I couldn’t hear the phone at all this morning. But then lo and behold the phone got turned back on! So i texted the world’s largest phone with this, “Oh dude there’s the worlds largest phone. I wiz jus’ sittn here at my work desk facin pioneer court wondern why wuznt hearn it. Welcome back to Chicago! Cricket is fly!”

  8. Matt Maldre March 12, 2009 at 10:34 am #

    Oh. Here’s the URL they are promoting for the event: It’s got some nice design. And when you click inside, they have some photos of the world’s largest cell phone being built.

  9. Matt Maldre March 12, 2009 at 10:43 am #

    It’s also interesting to note that on their second day in Pioneer Court, that they considerably lowered the volume on their moderator’s microphone. Heh. But I do have to admit, it’s fun to have stuff like this going right outside my work building. Thanks to Cricket Wireless and Samsung for bringing this event to Chicago. Oh and big propes to Ogilvy and NeverStop for their fine work on this project. I couldn’t find NeverStop’s website, but one of the workers down on the site was nice enough to chat with me a while and told me they were the two agency’s behind this project.

  10. Lisa Schryver March 12, 2009 at 10:47 am #

    I wonder if WGN Radio complained. They’re probably getting the brunt of it… although is their little booth sound proof?

  11. Matt Maldre March 12, 2009 at 10:52 am #

    Adrants says this is “Orchestrated by Seattle’s Cultural Engineers and events firm NEVERSTOP.”

  12. Matt Maldre March 12, 2009 at 11:22 am #

    Lisa S, I’d imagine that their booth can’t be THAT soundproof. They are literally RIGHT outside their studio. Like, what? 20 feet away. That placement was odd in Pioneer Court. I wonder if somehow they made an agreement with Tribune Tower to use that area. Their promo materials say “Tribune Court.” I’ve never heard Pioneer Court called that before. Usually promos in the court are more in the middle of the court and not so close to the WGN Studios of Tribune Tower.

  13. Lisa Schryver March 12, 2009 at 11:43 am #

    I think 20 feet is a little generous. I’d say something more like 10 feet. They’re really close! I thought the same thing when I saw them setting up. They usually do those things more in the middle. Is that still considered Tribune property?

  14. JW March 12, 2009 at 10:56 pm #

    Hi Matt, glad you enjoyed the phone, a lot of work went into making those buttons function just like a real phone, I’m the guy who produced this thing. We wondered about the soundproofing too but apparently they can’t hear us inside WGN, so that’s good. We didn’t come to Chicago to make people unhappy with us and I’m sorry if the noise level is bugging the guys in your office. On the other hand we wont be there for ever we leave next Wednesday. The idea was to get some attention in the great city of Chicago and well you guys have a spectacular location. We wanted to be out in the middle but of the court but for reasons to do with the ownership of the property and proximity to the sidewalk we ended up where we are. The number of the phone changes from location to location, we could change it minute by minute if we wanted to. We don’t mind if someone calls us it’s all part of the fun, we aren’t a bunch of stuffed shirts trying to achieve world cell phone domination, we just thought it would be cool to build a giant phone. Come on down and say hey sometime, I’ll show you how it was made. John

  15. calmaity45342 March 14, 2009 at 12:35 am #

    have you tried cricket wireless internet yet? got to be te worst there eer was! No matter what site you want to go to, Its unavailable. Im just waiting for my rebate then its bye-bye CRICKET!! I got it because I go to school online but they wont let me on! If anyone else has this problem lert me know, dial up was to slow, but I got where I needed to be.

  16. jeff March 14, 2009 at 3:16 pm #

    So … let me get this straight. You called a friend on a cell phone, and they called it back? That’s incredible. I can’t wait till the movie comes out!

  17. Anonymous March 16, 2009 at 7:43 am #

    A person called a phone that was promoted as being ‘working’. Where’s the prank?

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