Samsung Knack keeps it basic and.. patriotic?

Sometime around early 2006, I decided to kill a spare half hour my loitering around in a Verizon store. I know – coolest hang out spot ever, right? Anyways – at some point, an older gent stomped into the store, cherry faced and steam-eared. We’ll call him Bob. Being the nosey curious person I’ve always been, I eavesdropped on Bob’s conversation with a VZW employee. Turns out, Bob was upset not because his phone didn’t work, but because it just did too much. Bob was lost in the interface, seeing it as cluttered with things he simply didn’t need. Unsatisfied by Verizon’s other offerings, Bob killed his contract and left the store.

If only Verizon had Samsung’s Knack, announced today. It’s just about tailored for Bob and, though unspoken in Samsung’s promo materials, it’s a perfect fit for an older crowd who might have different needs. They’ve nixed all camera phone and web browsing features, upped the font and button size, and added an “ICE” (In Case of Emergency) button.

It’s not likely the Knack will snag the seat of many gadget enthusiast’s current handset, but it’s an alternative to forcing features on folks who simply don’t need (or want) them. It doesn’t look half bad, either — but what’s up with the 4th of July sidekeys?