I went about four months this year without a smartphone. I used an unlocked flip phone that barely made calls and didn’t have reliable text prediction. I was back to thinking in threes, and I can tell you on which number lies any letter in the alphabet without thinking too hard. The only times my phone made noise were when I received calls or texts, and that’s if I remembered to turn on my ringer.
Then, I bought a cheapo smart phone after reading a great article on Medium about minimalistic thinking when it came to buying a smartphone (the author uses the word “shitphone,” which I like, but find a little crass for day-to-day discussion).
I bought my own
shitphone economy smartphone and rejoined the world of tweeting, instagramming, emailing, and other various -ings that I’m supposed to do with one of these things. I also rejoined the world of constant notifications. Buzzing, beeping, and LED blinking.
I hated it.
I’m enjoying the rate at which I can send a text with a full keyboard, which is what really keeps me from bouncing back to ye olde flip phone. Other than that, I enjoyed being relatively disconnected. I enjoyed reading email when I happened to open it during the day. I enjoyed not knowing someone had liked a photo I put up. Notifications fed my ego and pushed me back into always wanting to know what was up.
So I turned them off.
I find it eerily similar to turning off tracking and stats for this site. I enjoy writing much more. I’m enjoying my life with a smartphone much more now that it isn’t always squawking at me.
All my phone does now is buzz when I get a call or a text. And that’s if I remember to turn my ringer on.
I have a
shitphone economy smartphone with the noise-making capacity of a flip phone. And I love it.