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I've often wondered this too. I understand for decorative places like outlet covers and such, but otherwise it sucks for the most part.
Actually many companies switched to phillips for applications where there was a decorative aspect. The front panel of electronics equipment for example, with slots the screw heads all looked askew while using phillips heads they looked more uniform.
All these screws have their place.
Extreme precision mechanisms still use slotted types almost exclusively. These types of items are usually assembled by hand. Mechanical watches, musical instruments - oboes, flutes, etc have screws down to 0-80 thread, some watches have down to 000-120 thread (the taps for those look like a thick hair). And yes Woussko, WiHa screwdrivers are tops for these fasteners (I've been using them since the middle 70's).
When I fasten drywall with any type drive other than Phillips, I end up having to replace the stuck bits time and time again from the screw head I just drove. Square and Torx just do not let go like the lowly Phillips.
Square and Torx are just awesome for so many other jobs.
The point is, depending on the job, you need them all.
I really like the square head, especially those that are a square/#2 phillips combo (the rounded edges of the phillips slot prevent the square driver from rounding out as it gives more support). Sadly, when I went to Lowes last time, all they carry now is straight Phillips and torx. The torx have lousy quality control and not enough meat to stand high torque. Need to keep looking for square drives so I can buy a few 25lb boxes, i guess. I can still get square in stainless, but the straight square drive is not as good as the combo, and all the deck screws are torx or phillips.
dwcurry, I took my xmas money last January and bought a boatload of McFeely's screws. The quality so far has been impressive. There's been 1 or 2 maybe that the taper wasn't done 100% correct, but the screws have all proven to be well made. I got a huge selection of wood screws, some pocket hole screws, and some machine screws.
I'm a happy McFeely's customer. My Dad's been using them for years and never had a complaint.
I put it all back together better than before. There\'s lots of leftover parts.
Straight slot & Phillips screws should be illegal. And Torx heads are only marginally better than Phillips.
The first time I used a square headed screw the drill practically torqued out of my hand! There's no stripping those heads!
A Democracy is 2 wolves and 1 sheep voting on what to have for lunch.