My native language is Malay and I use the word "handphone" the whole time. Even when speaking in Malay, the Malay equivalent "telefon bimbit" sounds stiff.
This word is found in Lexico and marked South East Asian:
South East Asian
A mobile phone
As far as I know, BrE and AmE speakers use "mobile phone" and "cell phone", respectively. So I'd like to know what native speakers feel about this word "handphone".
Here's an example from Lexico:
The idea is to prove to the big boys that it can be done, and that consumers can live with a handphone and mobile Internet.
Here are a few questions I'd like to ask:
- Is this idiomatic to BrE and AmE speakers?
- Can I use it in my thesis or term paper?
- Is it best avoided?