Sometimes I want a flip-phone

When the iPhone 6 came out and all of the cell carriers “removed the discount” they had been offering on smart phone lines, I seriously looked at getting a flip phone. With the change in structure of the cell bill, we had the choice of either buying our phones outright and then having to wait 2 years to get a new phone and pay a higher data charge (but still having the option to sell the phone when we got a new one) or signing up for what amounts to a payment plan where we lease the phones and can get a new one in a shorter period of time (we chose 18 months) and keep the discounted data charge. (We looked at every major carrier, the only one we could have done anything cheaper on was Sprint, but it doesn’t have a reliable network here.)

Our phones end up, essentially, costing the full $700 no matter which way we go. That is INSANE. I don’t need a $700 phone. I’m not solving world hunger here, I’m just writing. I’ve got a computer and iPad and I can use those to get on the internet. I don’t need to be that hyper connected. In fact, I don’t want to be that hyperconnected. I’m tired of feeling tethered to email and facebook and twitter and work. I wanted freedom.

I decided to get a simple flip phone. I would use it for *gasp* calls and texts and that was it. Great idea, right?

Nope. It was MORE expensive to go the low-tech route (over time) than to just get the new iPhone and all it’s bells and whistles (including the GPS that I desperately need.) So I got it. And I love it, it’s a great phone. But I still feel tethered. Attached. Dare I say, addicted?

It’s not all bad. Having a smart phone has allowed me to work a weird schedule this summer and keep up with everything I need to do while the kids play at the playground or the pool or the library. I’m immensely thankful I can stick a tiny computer in my back pocket and not have to haul my laptop everywhere. But I still feel like there needs to be a happier medium that I haven’t yet found.

We’re going camping next month and the spot we got doesn’t have electricity. There will be no way to charge anything other than in the car. I’m both looking forward to and am terrified of the disconnection. It’s only 2 days. I’m worried both that it’s too long, there will be too much to catch up on when I’m back “on the grid” but, also, that it’s too short. I won’t be finished with the withdrawal symptoms yet, so the hit I’m going to get when I plug it back in on the drive home will only make the attachment (addiction) worse.

How about you? Anyone out there feel the same way? Is there a medium ground between a landline and the computer in my pocket (or on your wrist?)

2 thoughts on “Sometimes I want a flip-phone

  1. rae

    travis went to a flip phone after his iphone broke. it ended up taking $80 off our bill a month which is awesome and he is totally happy with it. we have verizon. i don’t think i could do it though. the GPS! what did we do before we had that?

  2. amanda | wildly simple

    I feel with you.. The struggle is real!!
    For a long time, we had been reluctant (defiant?) about having data on our phones. And then at some point when I caved, I found that we had actually been paying more for basic “call and text” than we do now with smartphones.
    We are often taken aback at what we pay in cell bills monthly or annually, when it wasn’t ALL that long ago that bill didn’t exist for us at all! I dread the day my current phone dies and I have to look into getting another – and all the contracts or options that come with it – all over again.
    Personally, there is nothing I love more than being unconnected, at our cabin in the far north of Ontario, completely off the grid. We usually stay about a week, and it’s long enough for me to detach.
    But I also love having that helpful little voice telling me directions as I drive in unknown territory. It’s awfully convenient and handy!

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