Why I like my dumb phone

“You have a flip phone?”

It is a question I get asked more often than not. The answer I proudly give is, “Yes, I have a flip phone, and I love it.”

Though I am a proud dumb phone owner, it does not mean I wish to speak for others’ decisions, for I am in no position to say what technology is or isn’t appropriate for another’s day to day business.

Nevertheless, here’s why I like mine.

It’s cheap. While smartphones and flip phones are both free with a two year contract, the contract necessitated for a basic phone is far less expensive. By simply switching from an iPhone to a flip phone on the old Verizon plan, I saved $360 a year by not having data. Services like Cricket Wireless, which runs through the AT&T’s network, offer a $25 monthly basic unlimited talk and text plan with no data.

It doesn’t bog me down with technology. My phone can call, text, and take terrible photos. And that’s about it. I’m not carrying a miniature computer around in my pocket. I can’t play games on it, or video call people, or count calories, or check social media, or, well, much at all. And I like that.

It focuses my attention to the real world. Instead, I am forced to communicate with and be aware of the surrounding world. Since auctioning my iPhone off on Ebay and making a healthy $175 back, I find myself more in tune with the world and with a greater attention span.

I can stare at a blank wall, doing nothing else, and be totally content.

It is seeing a resurgence. I am not alone in my partial technophobia. There is an entire movement of people who are turning the page, realizing they don’t need a smartphone, and are trading them out for the simplicity of the flip phone.

Should I need email, I still have a computer. Should I need music, I have an old iPod. When I move on to a strange city and know not my way, I can always purchase a GPS, still available on Amazon, or heaven forbid try a map.

So if you have the means or desire, consider the dumb phone, if for nothing else except the drama of being able to angrily snap it shut after an argument.

-Aaron Kreitman