Wednesday, January 9, 2013

My Cell Phone is Everything

The Samsung Galaxy S 2, the machine I wield
Tonight as I watched an Ebay listing I had put up 7 days ago expire with no bids (dammit) from my phone, I thought I really do do everything on my phone now. When setting up a new phone, one of the first things I do is set up both of my email accounts and my Facebook. I use Amazon, Ebay, Blogger (yes, sometimes I write posts from my phone-- I did several this summer), Goodreads, Yelp, I access my banking on the browser, I read Cracked, Jezebel, and Buzzfeed when I get bored. I take notes, use the camera too much (but my cats are so cute!) and have a shortcut to the Kindle app handy when I've forgotten to bring a book with me somewhere. Anyone that ever needs to get ahold of me will always get me via my phone, it's just that the medium may differ.

When I first started working for my former employer, phones couldn't do these things. Correction: consumer phones couldn't. In 2005 the newer, sleeker (still a brick) models of BlackBerry came out but they were still aimed toward business users, and still didn't have a color screen. No, back then, the high-tech cell phone was the Motorola RAZR, and everyone and their mother had one (I did, and so did my mother). Smart phones evolved slowly, then bam! there was this iPhone thing. Then Android. I think Android was really the "holy shit" moment for cell phone technology. With the release of the Android-powered G1 in 2008, the rise in popularity of smartphones snowballed. In a very short period of time we went from a phone that had very little internal memory to the device I hold now-- the Samsung Galaxy S 2-- that has 16GB of internal memory and a high-definition screen. When I left my telecommunications job in 2011, there was a multitude of smartphones for consumers to choose from, from low-end to high-tech, and talking to the customers and learning their needs, they were becoming dependent on the technology, at times even eschewing home computers in favor of their smartphones.

Now, I'm not getting rid of my laptop. I can't game on my phone, and there are still limitations to mobile browsers that frustrate me. Also, what's up with mobile YouTube? There's almost nothing there. But if I go out the door without my phone you had better know I'm turning around for it. There's no way I'm going without. How else am I going to provide on-the-fly commentary about the human condition whilst grocery shopping or send pictures of funny license plates to my friends? I will honestly say that maybe I'm a little dependent on my phone because I sit and think "Jesus, how did I cope before?" although I know I did just fine. But man, I have become accustomed to my conveniences.

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