May 06, 2014

At my fingertips

So, yep. It’s finally happened. I have a smartphone. 

Announcing this to my friends was pretty anti-climatic. About half of them said things like, “What? You didn’t already have one? But you’re on twitter all the time!” And the other half said, “What? Why would you need one?”

I’ve been thinking about getting a smartphone for years. It was a student who finally convinced me that I should.

We were having a class discussion about whether or not smartphones were affecting teenagers’ ability to learn social skills and that grew into a broader discussion about the pros and cons of smartphones. I asked my students to write a few paragraphs about the topic. I gave them a bunch of prompts and then at the end, I said, kind of jokingly, “The important question, though is this -- should I get a smartphone?”

My students took the question seriously and wrote thoughtful responses. Several said that I didn’t need to worry about the smartphone hurting the development of my social skills since I was already a grown-up who knew how to talk to people. Several said they had confidence in my ability to put limits on my own technology use. Others pointed out that I would love the convenience of the smartphone when I’m traveling.

One student wrote, “Your students all have smartphones. And it’s important to you that you understand what’s going on with us – and what our generation is doing. So you need to get one too.” I decided he was right.

11 comments:

Heidi said...

You're going to love it!

Contingent Cassandra said...

That's why I'm in the (slow) process of getting one. I resent the extra monthly expense over my current flip phone, and don't expect to use it enough to justify the expense on a purely personal basis, but I teach writing, and know that my students do much of their writing (and reading -- even when I urge them to switch to at least a book-page-size screen, if not paper, for that) on small screens. I need to spend at least enough time on a small screen to understand how a significant segment of the written world looks to them. At some point in the future (perhaps at wearable/implantable), I'll probably draw a technological line, and say "that just isn't for me; I'm too old to adjust," but I hope I'm several decades away from doing that, so android here I come.

L said...

YAY!!!!!! We were very late adopters and we've love our phones. But we now have a limited plan (we first got on the bandwagon just because Spring had unlimited plans, I can't believe that now we're limiting our use. ;-) But it's OK, we're saving almost 100 dollars a month by using Ting. And since when I'm in both campuses I have WiFi, as well as at home, I've been coping all right with limiting my use. We did that b/c with our son having a phone we'd be paying close to 200 a month with Sprint.

I'm glad you'll be even more connected now. If you're anything like me, though (wanting to blog, type comments on fb, etc), your smartphone won't diminish your need to use your laptop. I still prefer to be on my laptop as much as I can. But the phone sure is convenient! And it takes great quality photos! I think you'll love that. Hmmm... did you go with apple or android (if you don't mind answering). Just curious!

Haakan K said...

There are risks though ...look at this:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ublI5w1sJFA&feature=youtu.be

jo(e) said...

Contingent Cassandra: Exactly!

L: I went with an iPhone even though my kids have androids.

Haakan: That made me laugh.

L said...

YAY, even easier for me to text you. ;-) same #, right?

jo(e) said...

L: Yep, it's the only cell phone number I've ever had. I still have you on my contact list.

robin andrea said...

We still don't have one yet. Not sure we want one. We went to the Verizon store the other day to look around. The sales person was the fastest talking human I've ever met. We said we wanted the dumbest smart phone available. Not sure such a thing exists. I'm looking forward to reading more about your new relationship with this device.

readersguide said...

Shiney!

jo(e) said...

Here's the thing I really love: the voice-to-text feature. All four of my kids text me (that's how their generation communicates) and I always hated trying to type stuff into that tiny little keypad. Now I can just talk into the phone.

Annette G said...

I finally got one in November. I would agree about the voice text..and voice notes and voice blog! You can now do it all! :)