I got my first cell phone the second semester of my freshman year of college (that would have been 2004). My family had one before that – a “family” cell phone, to be used as needed. I didn’t want one for a long time. I thought people who had them were so rude – I would be out to dinner or out for a walk with someone and their cell phone would ring – and suddenly they’re having a conversation with someone who’s not even there, and I would be bored hearing one side of the conversation. I feel a little guilty thinking back to those days – how many times have I been the rude one since I’ve had my cell phone?
When I finally did get a phone, it was very basic. I don’t even remember what it looked like or what it did, just that it was boring. All it meant to me at the time was that I no longer needed phone cards to call my parents from my dorm room. And it had a keyboard that would call random people from my pocket, until I learned how to lock the phone.
I got my last cell phone in August 2008, when Pat and I signed a contract together with AT&T. It was also very basic. At least it had a sliding screen so I no longer had to worry about whether my phone was locked. This one didn’t even have any games (!) – but it did have a camera, which I thought was cool. But since Pat and I both got the same phone, it was free with out contract, so it seemed like a good deal. Of course I wanted an iPhone when they first came out, but I managed to get by without. I thought it would be nice to have, but wasn’t sure it was worth the money. And when Pat got an iPhone, I realized I could play games and find directions on his, so there was no need for me to have my own.
That Samsung lasted me about a year and 9 months. It went through a lot. It was dropped too many times to count. The little water sensor probably turned red during the first month I had it. You know, the sensor that tells AT&T they no longer have to honor any kind of warranty on your phone? I spilled water on it. It was out in the rain. It even fell into a pile of snow (twice). Each time it got wet, I would take out the battery and SIM card, let everything dry, and it would come alive again.
Until this morning. I’m not even sure what happened exactly. I had it on my nightstand last night, close to my glass of water. This is normally where my cell phone stays over night, but something must have happened. Maybe the water glass was extra sweaty. Who knows? But it did not recover. I took the battery out, I took the SIM card out, and let it dry. And still, my cell phone would only give a blue message, on a black background: “download”… I had never seen this one before. It was time to replace my cell phone.
It just so happens that we were a 3 cell phone family. When Pat got his iPhone, it was an addition to our plan. He still mostly used the old Samsung for calls, while the iPhone was more for games and checking email/directions while we were out. Therefore, it made sense for us to transfer my number to the iPhone rather than buying yet another phone for our family. Long story short – I now have an iPhone!
I have barely set it down tonight. I’ve been setting up my gmail account, my facebook account, creating a new Twitter account (the old one was in my maiden name). I’ve played with the ringer settings, set up my weekday morning alarm and tested out the new texting keyboard. As excited as I am, I have a bad feeling that my new toy might lead to lower productivity this week. How long did you wait to jump on the iPhone bandwagon? How often does it become a distraction in your daily life?