It was the best of times, it was the worst of times..
A few weeks ago, I received a message from the good people from AT&T (I’m not being paid to say that), delivering the good tidings that I was finally eligible for… -insert trumpet fanfare- a new cell phone upgrade! It’s always fun to receive this message, because at this point in the relationship with your cell phone, it’s usually the time where you are experiencing the most problems with your current mobile device. This usually involves calling it names because it wont work like you expect it too and rather than gingerly placing it onto the table like you used too, just tossing it.
Anyway, I head down to the retailers to begin my search of just what device best suits Mike Washington. It was then that I realized that I was lost in the times. The phone I was upgrading from was one that operated completely on actual buttons, with no touchscreens whatsoever (and it wasnt even a Blackberry). After being worked over by several employees who were obviously getting paid off of commission, the choice was obvious. I needed a smart phone. So after several days of worry and intense thought, I made my choice and later returned for: A small but fancy, Windows smart phone.
It was everything I ever dreamed I could do on a phone, and more. I could check emails, get news, AND go on Facebook at ANY time?? My mind was blown. I was on cloud nine for several days untill it finally came…the realization that this thing doesn’t actually do everything I thought it could. I faced a simple problem: I would like to set up a ringtone that isn’t a boring default one that came with the phone. Simple right? So I begin my quest to do so. I check the manual. It doesn’t say. I check the online user guide. IT doesn’t say. I ask a friend who also owns a smart phone. He owns an iPhone, so he knows nothing. My affection for my new device plummeted before my eyes. I went from seeing my telephone go from new love, to worthless piece of crap in 1 hour.
I began to miss the old days where everyone had the same basic phone. The days where the most fancy of telephones was a Motorola Razr (which still operated on just buttons-way-back-when). The days where button pushing was king, and finger sliding was a task still unheard of. Technology is constantly evolving and making things simpler in more complex ways than we can ever fathom. But sometimes the “techies” try to make it so simple that it becomes complicated. Not that I am complaining (too much at least), but I can still remember when texting wasnt the primary mode of communication. Back when “Tweeting” was something only birds were expected to do and “Poking” only annoying kids did to each other. Technology is great, and brings us together, but lets not let it consume us and take away what it’s really meant for: Making our lives easier so that we can spend our time focussed on more important things.