iPhone cult gains another victim

BY SOPHIE AFDHAL ’15
Contributing Writer

Last week, in a disappointing turn of events, my Blackberry began to die. Waterlogged and aging, it is slowly falling apart. Faced with its impending destruction, I had to make a decision. It was time to pre-order a new phone.

In my family, I am the only one without an iPhone. The others have had iPhones for years. They have all the apps, they send each other emoticons. For years they’ve tried to talk me into getting one, but I resisted because I adored my Blackberry. I adored not being part of the mass consumer culture of the iPhone.

I preferred to see my phone as a communication device rather than a magical square that can do anything. I don’t need an app for everything. I don’t need 50 different games to occupy me in my spare moments. We live in an oversimplified world with more technology than we need. What happened to a phone that just made calls? What happened to calling someone to know what he or she was up to instead of Twitter and Facebook stalking him or her?

But when I had to choose a new phone, the choice was essentially made for me. I will join the rest of my family as a member of the iPhone cult. I will finally bow to the uniformity of mass culture. Since arriving on this campus, I have been shocked by the sheer number of iPhone users. It is more common to see someone with an iPhone than without one. And when my iPhone arrives this October, I will join the iPhone nation.

I have one friend remaining with Blackberry Messenger which was once so popular. She could not have been less happy about my decision to leave her and Blackberry behind. I share her upset and hope that I do not fall victim to the iPhone’s magic. I hope that I do not become unable to go five minutes without checking my phone. I hope I can still live without the constant stimulation of it. I want to retain my ability to commit to conversations and pay attention to what is happening around me.

Face-to-face contact is the highest form of communication; something we should all remember and strive for. All of this is why I am sad to say goodbye to my faithful Blackberry. For years, it flawlessly delivered my texts, calls, and emails. It allowed me to play one game and gave me no apps. It was a phone. I will be very sad to part with it when my iPhone arrives. With that, I say goodbye to my Blackberry, hello to my iPhone, and maintain my hope that we do not forget to remain connected outside of our phones.

Questions? Email Sophie at safdhal@fandm.edu.

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