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Wednesday, 6 January 2016

The basic phone experiment

About a month ago, my smartphone randomly stopped working. A day later, I wandered into the phone shop - I had excellently timed it for lunchtime, meaning, I ended up waiting for over half an hour to be seen, with my toddler side kick at my heels. During the wait, I made a decision.

I'm not going to bother with smartphones for the time being.

For a while, I had known the smartphone wasn't necessarily a good thing. Or, more to the point, my overuse of it wasn't good. So, I browsed the shelves of the phone shop (I had plenty of time whilst waiting my turn in the queue) and picked up a basic phone for £10, and, when my turn finally came, asked the girl behind the counter if I could switch to that whilst the smartphone was being fixed.

I'm okay with the fact I am still waiting for a call to say my smartphone is ready to be collected. I don't want it back. Now, the claim I am about to make is not exactly scientific - lots of things may have interfered with the results of the basic phone experiment - Christmas (and the awesome ham that came with it) being one big factor, but here goes anyway.

No longer having a smartphone has had a profound impact on my personal happiness.

It dawned on me this morning that I would feel fine flinging my smartphone into the river (if the shop ever gets back to me). I don't want it back.

The basic phone does what I need it to, which is, to be contactable in an emergency. And, by that, I mean the sort of phone call all parents dread getting to say that something bad has happened to their child. Oh, and to be able to text friends when one of us is running late. It is strange to think that my children are growing up with no concept of needing to stick to the time and place you said you'd meet your school friend at the weekend when you made the original plan at school to go to Woolworths to buy singles and pick and mix together at the weekend. And, that they will probably never use a red phone box to call home.

So that's it. I'm not going to go on and on about the evils of smartphones. Just wanted to say that for me, I am so much happier not owning one.


  1. Good for you. I love my iphone, but yeah, they do eat time. One of the new habits I am trying to cultivate is reading. So, at bed time I pick up my kindle, or (shock) an actual book!

    1. I'm trying to do the same thing on the reading front - read a whole book over Christmas (a big deal for me, as I am a painfully slow and easily distracted reader!). Enjoy your books. :)

  2. Good for you. For years we didn't have any kind of phone. We used call boxes to arrange our social life and, shock horror arrived on time! We got a phone landline and mobile when I was pregnant with Rowan 9 years ago. And it erks me still. That so many of my friends are now almost incapable of arriving at a given destination without us exchanging loads of texts. Great post, thought provoking.