Sometimes, phones can just be used for making a call

Sarah Goldwasser

And it’s thinner, too!

Haven’t we gone through this before? I’ve grown up in a society of updates, of improvements, of revised cameras and a more streamlined look. I can get better, everything seems to whisper.

I am referring, in part, to the release of the iPhone 5. Pre-orders sold out in minutes, as opposed to the suspected ten hours.

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As someone who doesn’t own a smartphone, it’s interesting to watch people get hyped up for the newest, the latest, the greatest yet. I believe the drive behind the need to upgrade, and to keep up with the most modern technology, is controlled almost completely by what the majority of our social groups do.

Since its introduction in 2007, it has quickly become not in vogue, but the social norm, to own an iPhone. At Redwood, it seems almost assumed of the student body to tote around a recent model of the smartphone in a cute, chunky case and use it whenever possible.

Now, you must understand that this is no case of sour grapes. For my birthday, my mom generously offered to trade my old, free AT&T cell for an iPhone, and I politely declined.

I shall not give in to the consumerist greed that is the underlying cause of all that is wrong in our nation! I cried. Well, not quite that wording, but you get the picture.

I choose to stick with my janky old phone that is falling apart, and whose only features include calling, texting, and taking pictures that possess a blurry, grainy quality resembling photographs of Yetis and Loch Ness monsters.

This is neither in protest of sweatshops, nor in aiming for a hipster-esque image. My phone isn’t charmingly quirky in that vintage, outdated way. It’s. A. Phone. To, like, call people and order takeout.

Must we all posses the ability to send spaceships to Mars with a touch of a finger, with the power resting in our pockets? What are the purposes of a phone being aerodynamic? For throwing it out a window?

I digress. But my point is valid: a phone is a phone. I respect your right to pay an exorbitant monthly fee for accessing Instagram and the latest app, as long as you respect mine to not. There’s no denying smartphones are fun. I’ve spent many a bored car ride playing horribly uncool games and taking pictures. But the silliness wears away after a few minutes, and I get bored of taking selfies, and hand back the phone to its loving parent.

Upgrading seems to be unconscious decision for most, whether it’s installing an updated computer software or grabbing a ‘new and improved!’ bag of chips instead of the original. And yet, the improvements aren’t necessary.

I’m not self-righteous or stingy. I just don’t believe the hype.