Unsmart: Not an early adopter, not yet a luddite

I don’t have a smartphone.

At least, technically I do, but I don’t use it smartly. I have a little Samsung that has smartphone capability but I don’t have a data plan so unless I’m at home or somewhere with free wireless, it’s not smart. And even then, I don’t bother. I tried to set up Facebook and Twitter when I got it, but on the rare occassion that I try away from home, they don’t seem to work .

When we were on vacation last week, others were amazed that neither of us have iPhones. As far as they’re concerned, an iPhone is a constant requirement, much like food or oxygen. How could you survive without one, we were asked? But we’re both usually within spitting distance of a laptop, so why would we court arthritic thumbs just for the joy of doing it all on a smaller screen for a hefty monthly fee?

However. There comes a point when you’re actually falling behind on the technology curve. What starts out as a somewhat smug and superior, money-saving “I don’t need that fancy newfangled thing” can turn into a much less desirable “The idea is actually a little scary now, because everyone knows how to use it and I don’t.”

But I’ve felt like this before. I felt like this when I was 20 and some of my friends at college were playing around on the tiny Apple Macs on the third floor of the library and I had no idea what they were doing. I felt this way in about 1995 when I didn’t yet have a mobile phone but most people did. Both times, I got with the program a little while later. I’m just not an early adopter: that’s okay.

I don’t see myself getting an iPhone any time soon, simply because I hardly ever use my phone even as a phone. It sits in my bag and runs out of batteries for a couple of days before I’ve noticed. Unless I start spending a lot more time out of the house, I’m more likely to get an iPad first, probably; but the technology’s much the same, so that would work out equal, right? And even at that, just now the idea of an iPad mostly makes me think of an annoying keyboard and another thing for the kids to demand to play games on more than anything I’d regularly want to use myself.

Finally, I spend a lot of my day online. If leaving the house provides me with my offline time, I’m wary of getting an appliance that takes that away. Then I’d have to practice some sort of self-control, and that’s just not my bag, baby.

How about you? Could you live without your iPhone? Do you think someone who doesn’t have one by now is beyond all hope for survival in the modern world?



7 thoughts on “Unsmart: Not an early adopter, not yet a luddite

  1. office mum

    I love having phone-free time. I put mine in another room when I get home from work so I’m not tempted to check it. And I leave it untouched in my bag if we’re out for a family day somewhere. But the rest of the time, I’m sadly addicted. I think your point at the end – about being online at home most of the day – that’s a very good reason to avoid a smartphone if you can. Too much online is not good for real world I think. Like pretty much everything, there’s a balance. I have a post in drafts about smartphones – must dig it out now that you’ve reminded me. I find the whole world of social media and smartphones fascinating. It’s actually more interesting than parenting as a topic really. Now I’ve gone too far.

      1. Office Mum

        Oh – I feel I have to clarify now that I mean a more interesting topic in terms of me writing, not you – otherwise it sounds to your readers as though I’m talking about your parenting blog posts!

  2. Laura@raisingelves

    I resisted a smart phone for ages and took my husbands old one when he got a new one. It very quickly became like a third hand. I didn’t like that so I try to restrict myself by not having too many apps on it. I would find it hard going back though. I recently switched to a Sony for photo quality as I lover that I can take photos on the phone and that’s where I get annoying- I document everything with photos. I have a personal rule regarding the phone. Real life comes first. If I’m busy, I don’t rush to it to answer a call or text. When at home during the day I can go hours without looking at it. Some pople go nuts that I’m not available immediately. They get offended that I don’t prioritise their call/text/email/message. I think ‘hey, I’m on the toilet here, give me a break ‘, they grettle back at me. I hate when people look at their texts or feed while we are socialising. Also, I hate the sensation of wireless on my being so I won’t carry the phone in my pocket. Another reason why it sits on the window ledge untouched. I mostly use the mac which is mostly covered with unironed laundry -another trick to keep me offline lol.


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