iPhone acquired
#103 Henry, Monday, 20 June 2011 9:57 PM (Category: iPhone)
(Tags: iphone)

I do not own a mobile phone. I have carried one for a long time - a work phone. It's a leash around my neck, tying me to work 24 hours a day.

It's not a smart phone, it's a simple mobile phone - small and primitive. And very ergonomically primitive. One of the most annoying features is when you grip it normally to close it or open it, my thumb triggers a stupidly placed switch on the side and it goes into voice command mode and starts speaking to me telling me to say a name. This so enraged me several months ago, I took the case off and cut out the switch, permanently and brutally disabling the voice feature. The phone did me for several years and then developed a problem with the battery charger. It was one of the "special" phones that took a proprietary USB charger and would recognise and reject a generic USB charger. The USB socket started to deteriorate. One day the complete insides of the USB socket fell out. The phone was on a rapid path to death.

I mentioned this at work, but got no reponse. I hoarded the remaining power until it was my time to go on call. Then I reminded them again that I was about to go on call and my phone was about to die. Sucks to be them if something went wrong and I couldn't get news of the emergencies. That got a result. My masters brought me a spare phone they had been hoarding for just such an emergency. I had to laugh. I recognised the spare phone. It was the one I had before the current one. It would work fine except the microphone and speakers did not work. You could make a call and it would be answered but you and your caller could not hear you. You could use it as a messaging device, I suppose. No-one believed me, so I activated the phone, handed it to my boss and asked him to make a phone call. Twenty minutes of frustration later, I was handed a second "spare phone". The battery was flat, I set it to charging. One of my co-workers came past and said he recognised that one. The charging facility doesn't work. I let it charge for a few hours and asked my boss to test it. This time his temper blew up even harder. Hours passed, and I got a phone call from the CFO. Did I want a Droid or an iPhone. Hmm, good question. On one hand I was curious about the Droid. On the other hand, I've been using an iPod Touch for a while, know it quite thoroughly, have lots of apps for it, and like it a lot. Let's go with what we know, so I asked for an iPhone.

While I waited for something to happen, the three dead phones suffered a fairly final fate so they couldn't be handed on as replacements to some other unlucky person.

Two days later, I got an iPhone. I don't own it, I don't pay for it, I don't pay for any of the services. But I get to use it.

I backed up my iPod Touch. Then I activated the iPhone. And then I restored my iPod Touch backup to the iPhone. It worked spectacularly well. All I had to get used to where the phone and message functions, and the camera. That didn't take long.

So I used the phone facilities and discovered that smartphones are really smart devices that happen to be very poor phones. With the old phone, I could make a phone call to Anne one handed, while driving, without looking at the phone. Ditto for retrieving voicemail. Not so the iPhone. You have to look at it, to do anything. Unless you go into voice mode, but it doesn't like my Australian accent while I am driving, and it will try and phone anyone but the one I want. So that's a step backwards.

As time went by, I got more used to the iPhone. I really like it. I don't forget my phone any more in the mornings. And when the phone rings when I am driving, I ignore it. I wait till I stop driving, remove my glasses and look at the screen. Then I choose what to do. This choice to ignore all calls while driving has been liberating.

So now that I have fully accepted the iPhone and integrated it into my life, I am going to sell the iPod Touch.

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