Smart phones are sometimes just stupid

“Is that the new xFone 3G?” “Just bought it yesterday.” “Didn’t you have one already?” “Course. I just needed an upgrade.” “Hmm…I dunno. I mean, the wireless airport syncing is pretty nice, but I couldn’t pay for a full new device just for that. Or was it that they added Javascript recognition for better AP customization?” “The logo on the back lights up now.” “The…logo?” “That’s so pimp!”
~“Chicks dig shiny stuff,” Broken Plot Device

I’ve never been able to tolerate camera phones. I can’t tolerate smart phones. For one, the price tag is just too damn steep (and then there’s the contract…even the lowest-tier contracts are more minutes than I would ever use). But the iPhone seems to be the gadget of choice for many simplicity/productivity bloggers. Sure, there are some good arguments for the iPhone out there. But I don’t see the appeal.

My biggest beef is also my biggest problem with cell phones in general: planned obsolescence. Cell phones are made to break. Granted, keeping a pay-as-you-go cell phone around is, for me, much cheaper than keeping around a landline, with the added bonus of having the cell on me in case I need it in an emergency (“Hey, Dad? My truck just broke down on the side of the highway…” Actually happened). It does seem, however, that the more bells and whistles on the phone, the more likely they are to have something mysteriously “go wrong.” Not to mention that with a composite, if you lose it or it breaks, you lose your phone, camera, notepad, and whatever else you’ve combined into it.

I can see the occasional convenience of having a camera phone…for those moments where you see something that you just have to photograph, but in most cases I just file the memory away and tell the story later. My life is not lacking for not having pictures of the odd bullshit I see everyday. When I decide to take photos, I want to use an actual camera that takes high-quality photos…not a phone that takes low-quality pictures that I can’t remove from the device.

People talking constantly on cell phones is annoying enough without people also texting, surfing the web, and listening to music while I’m trying to get them to tell me what they want on their fucking burrito. People are connected enough. You don’t need to check your damn email every time your phone alerts you that some new piece of spam has invaded your email. It’s not that important, trust me. You might think it is, but you will not die and the world will not end if you don’t find out what Sam wants right fucking now. You want to know how I manage my email? I wait until I get home. When I have something I want to remember? I write it down. Piece of paper, body part, moleskine notebook. I don’t need a phone for that. I also don’t need a phone to play music or take pictures. I have other devices for that that work MUCH better.

So while the iPhone and it’s ilk may be convenient for some people, it’s not something I will subject myself to. My own personal brand of simplicity doesn’t involve an iPhone…it involves leaving the wallet and the phone at home and roaming around unconnected to the busy world of emails, phone calls, twitter, and stupid youtube videos. I’d much rather just look at the Northern Shrike than take a crappy picture of it, or twitter about it, or ignore it completely because someone thinks my non-existent penis needs to be enlarged. Fuck that.

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