If you're looking for bells and whistles, stop right now. This isn't the phone for you. If you're looking for something cheap that does the job and is kind of cute in a bigger-than-everyone-else's cell phone kind of way, this is your guy.
I was late joining the rest of the world in owning a cell phone. I don't really like to talk on the phone, and I didn't want to pay to not answer another phone. So when I finally decided to stop embarassing my friends and get a cell phone, I wanted something affordable. (In the language of starving artists, that means "dirt cheap.")
Boost Mobile has the most awesome, cheapest pay as you go phone plan ever (see my review called "Boost Mobile Rocks") and fortunately they also have an awesome cheap phone to go with it: the Motorola i415 aka the Nextel i415 aka the Boost Mobile i415. (They're all the same.)
The i415 is a basic cell phone, but you can do all the essentials with it: make and receive phone calls (duh), text message, connect to the internet, play games, add ring tones and wallpaper, send and receive photos. It's a little larger than most phones that are popular right now, but it still fits in a pocket if your pants aren't too tight.
The reception is fabulous, the battery life is excellent, and it can take it if you drop it frequently.
The drawbacks aren't too serious. The ringtones and wallpaper that came with the phone didn't offer any real selection, and getting better ones without paying for them was an ordeal. If you want to get free ringtones for this phone without giving out your cell phone number, go to this site: Instructions For Webjal and Loading Free Nextel Ringtones Wallpapers and Games. It makes the process much clearer and easier.
The phone doesn't have much storage space, so it will only hold a few pictures, a few ringtones, and a message or two before you have to start deleting things. If you need to store a lot of stuff, you'll probably want to try another phone.
If you want a manual, you'll have to download it from the website, which is a hassle. I'm also pretty sure text messaging can be easier than this, but at least it can be done.
If these things don't bother you, you've just found a great phone for very little cash.