They Like Their Clamshell Phones, and That’s OK

People have a funny relationship with their cellphones. Even when they go out and buy the fanciest highest tech smart phone, sometimes asking them about it elicits the same level of angst as inquiring about a sore tooth.

My friend Joe is a good example: He just bought a Samsung phone. “How do you like it?” I asked him brightly, over a beer. His only observation was how it doesn’t dial extensions after the phone number. Not anything about its other features…just that it doesn’t do one thing (that no phone can do.) He said that annoyed him so much that he didn’t really care about the vaunted features.

old mobile phonesAn article in today’s WSJ is about people who stick with their old 1990s vintage phones and refuse to upgrade to the iPhone or Android. I got into a somewhat testy conversation with a relative about this when I was visiting. He got defensive when I asked him how he liked having the old flip style phone. It turned out that problems with work connections, security loopholes and other factors led to him cancelling the iPhone he wanted. It was too complicated. And now he doesn’t want to talk about it.

A lot of people have told me about how they don’t want the internet in their pocket. They like the simple function of calling people. Not texting, not surfing.

I remember how well my little LG flip phone fit in my pocket. And it seemed to stay charged up for ever. So  maybe that’s why so many people are still flipping open their clamshells, and don’t have any interest in upgrading. That and their bill which has gotta be only half as much per month as my fancy iPhone from AT&T.