Getting a smartphone will change your life for the better even if, like me, you thought you never needed one. But now I’ve got apps in my life there’s no going back to my old mobile ways.
My colleague Christopher would have us believe that smartphones are unnecessary gadgets to weigh down your pocket. After all, the main purpose of a mobile phone is to be just that – a phone. Right?
Until recently, I agreed with him. I’d even been known to refer to smartphone owners as ‘smartphone sheep’. That’s until my old – and very unsmart – phone started playing up just as a friend upgraded to Apple’s iPhone 4. He offered me his iPhone 3GS and – being too cash-poor to buy a new handset – I reluctantly accepted.
I rapidly had to eat my scathing words. Within a matter of days (possibly even hours) I was hooked. Since then, my smartphone love affair has only grown stronger.
Never get lost again
In my pre-smartphone days, going somewhere unfamiliar – by car or foot – involved printing off reams of directions and maps in advance. Otherwise I was pretty much guaranteed to get hopelessly lost.
My iPhone completely does away with the need for guerrilla-level advance preparation. Like the vast majority of smartphones, the iPhone comes with built-in GPS so at any given moment I know exactly where I am and can plot the best route to where I want to go. This feature alone has already saved me hours of frustrated wandering.
Appealing apps and first-rate functionality
Coined by Apple to promote its App store, the phrase ‘there’s an app for that’ has been widely adopted by journalists and joke-tellers alike.
From step-by-step recipes to GPS-based exercise trackers, I’ve yet to draw a blank when searching for an app. And, slightly alarmingly, I’ve even found National Rail’s train times app to be more up-to-date than the information given at stations themselves.
In his rant against smartphones, Christopher calls smartphones ‘Jacks of all trades, masters of none’, but I have to stand up for their functionality. Which? lab tests prove that most smartphones work just as well for calls and texts as their lower-spec alternatives, and the quality and ease of use of the iPhone’s MP3 player equal those of the iPod.
Plus, mobile phone cameras have come on leaps and bounds since their early days. Some – such as the Sony Ericsson Satio – even offer 8Mp or higher resolution and proper flashes.
I’m happy to sacrifice a little ease of use and a few features for the convenience of having access to a camera, music player and the internet whenever and wherever I want to use them.
So if you’re thinking of upgrading your mobile, but don’t think you need a smartphone, perhaps you should think again. Once you get apps, you’ll never go back.
What side of the smartphone debate are you on?
I agree with Ceri - smartphones rock (64%, 178 Votes)
I agree with Christopher - smartphones suck (36%, 99 Votes)
Total Voters: 277