I am swapping my Galaxy S5 for a dumb phone to see what living without a smartphone feels like
posted by Nick T. / Jan 16, 2015, 9:37 AM
This article may contain personal views and opinion from the author.
Ever since I was a kid, I've been passionate about science and electronics. I've always been curious about how things around me worked, which is why most of my toys ended up taken apart; I simply had to know what made them tick. The older I got, the more my affinity with technology grew, and so did the number of gadgets which I rightfully owned. Then the inevitable happened one day – I purchased my first smartphone. The moment I made the switch I realized I was never going back to a feature phone again. That happened six years ago, more or less.
Since then, I've had my hands on dozens, if not hundreds of smartphones as part of the PhoneArena writers team. What's more, I've had the chance to use many of them as daily drivers, and for the past few months, the Samsung Galaxy S5 has been catering to my needs. I think of it as an irreplaceable multifunctional tool. It keeps me connected to friends and family, it enables me to take pictures anytime and anywhere, it keeps me entertained with music and videos, I even use it to make phone calls every once in a while, believe it or not. On top of that, my smartphone doubles as an alarm clock, it is what I use to take down notes and set reminders, it is my navigator when I can't find my way around, it lets me access my personal cloud storage whenever I need it, and so much more. To sum it all up, I've long become highly dependent on my smartphone, and I can't picture myself living without one.
In the name of science, I'll stop using my smartphone for several weeks.For the next two weeks, however, I'll be the guinea pig in an experiment I've wanted to do for a while – I'll have my smartphone taken away from me. Instead of a Galaxy S5, I'll be using a phone not much more advanced than a potato – one without apps, without games, without any internet access whatsoever. The goal of this experiment is to find out what happens when a person as hooked on their smartphone as myself – and I'm sure there's plenty of you out there who can relate – gets separated from their gadget. We should also be able to get a better idea as to how much someone can depend on their smartphone and whether having one does more harm than good. I'm sure being part of this is not going to be a fun experience, but I'm willing to do it in the name of science. And for curiosity's sake, of course.
At this point, the clock for me has already started ticking, and my smartphone has been put away in a box. My task now is to log any peculiarities and behavior changes I might experience (using pen and paper, of course) over the next 14 days and to share them with you once the experiment has ended. Also I'll be posting updates on how I'm doing and whether or not I've gone bonkers without having my precious on me. Wish me luck, guys!
This story is part of:Living without my Galaxy S5 smartphone: an experiment (4 updates)
10 February I lived without my Galaxy S5 smartphone for 2 weeks: here's how my life changedAs dependent on my smartphone as I am, I've long been wondering what it would feel like to live without one and whether I had not become overly attached to mine. Hence I volunteered to temporarily swap my Galaxy S5 for a phone without apps, without games, and without any access to the internet. These two weeks of "abstinence" yielded the flurry of positive and negative experiences which I'll share with you in these paragraphs...
27 January Living without my Galaxy S5 smartphone, day 11: horror and blissIt was 11 days ago, at 12:30 in the afternoon, when I voluntarily parted with my Samsung Galaxy S5. That moment marked the beginning of an experiment – one meant to show what would happen if a techie like myself had to survive without a smartphone. Since then, the only device I've been using for my mobile communication needs has been a cheap, basic phone with no apps, no games, and absolutely no access to the internet. 5 days into my journey, I shared some of the observations I had made until that point, but I was sure there was more to be experienced in the days to come. I wasn't wrong, as it turned out...
21 January Living without my Galaxy S5 smartphone, day 5: I've not gone crazy yetSeveral days ago, I embarked on a journey to a parallel universe – one where smartphones didn't exist. More specifically, they existed for everyone else but me. I had my Galaxy S5 locked away and was prohibited from using a personal smartphone of any kind. Instead, I was given a phone that could only make calls, exchange text messages, and double as a flashlight. This was the start of an experiment which I had wanted to do for a long time – one intended to demonstrate what results could heavy long-term smartphone usage lead to. I was also curious to find out what would happen if a person as dependent on their smartphone as myself had to survive without their gadget...
16 January I am swapping my Galaxy S5 for a dumb phone to see what living without a smartphone feels likeFor the next two weeks, I'll be the guinea pig in an experiment I've wanted to do for a while – I'll have my smartphone taken away from me. Instead of a Galaxy S5, I'll be using a phone not much more advanced than a potato – one without apps, without games, without any internet access whatsoever...
Samsung Galaxy S5 OS: Android 6.0 Marshmallow, 5.1 Lollipop, 5.0 Lollipop, 4.4.4, 4.4.2 View Full specs
- Display 5.1" 1080 x 1920 pixels
- Camera 16 MP / 2.1 MP front
- Processor Qualcomm Snapdragon 801, Quad-core, 2500 MHz
- Storage 32 GB + microSDXC
- Battery 2800 mAh(21h 3G talk time)
Posts: 2486; Member since: Jan 26, 2014
This is a pretty good idea...
posted on Jan 16, 2015, 9:40 AM 24
Posts: 1121; Member since: Jan 10, 2014
He's likely to return back to a smartphone within a week , and tell us how bad it feels being social in real life :P Also a message that we are overly attached to our smartphones and we need to stop.
posted on Jan 16, 2015, 11:59 AM 7
Posts: 2278; Member since: Aug 06, 2014
Trust me, it's great experience I was using SE C905 for almost 3 years after I ditched Optimus 3D and just recently I bought smartphone but I miss SE so much. Great photos, very pocketable and you can't beat 1.5 week battery life.
posted on Jan 16, 2015, 12:34 PM 0
Posts: 153; Member since: Apr 11, 2014
Separating yourself from your smartphone is the hardest part of your life nowadays. Its like you have lost 95% of it.
posted on Jan 16, 2015, 5:49 PM 3
Posts: 601; Member since: Nov 20, 2012
our phone though the years has replaced many of our other devices making it impossible to leave it. Ex: camera, alarm clock, gps, weather checker, newspaper, social media, email, ordering food,watching tv, gaming,etc One smartphone =endless options
posted on Jan 17, 2015, 12:05 AM 3
Posts: 1; Member since: Jan 17, 2015
I tried it once, it lasted about 3 days before I lost my s**t and had to wander back into the smartphone lifestyle... I do leave my phone in my room on my days off and try to go a day or two with limited time on my phone
posted on Jan 17, 2015, 12:00 PM 1
Posts: 1037; Member since: Feb 10, 2012
I kinda envy people with dump phones. It's not like you'd be missing anything that important. PS, you should do it for more than 2 weeks. I think 2 months is a better amount of time to get the full experience.
posted on Jan 16, 2015, 9:45 AM 3
Posts: 4744; Member since: Jan 28, 2011
What are you trying to do, kill him?
posted on Jan 16, 2015, 10:12 AM 25
Posts: 182; Member since: Jun 15, 2014
You should have just switched it out with an iPhone. It's pretty much the same thing.
posted on Jan 16, 2015, 9:52 AM 38
Posts: 418; Member since: Jan 05, 2015
Why not try doing without a car, electric appliances in your home or other modern conveniences too? I understand that we are overly addicted to technology and can become too obsessed with keeping up with all the latest developments. We can only blame ourselves for providing manufacturers with a more than willing market for stuff we don't really need. I think we could tone it down a little while not doing without basic conveniences. I agree with the basic sentiment, however. I would never buy a snowblower or leaf blower for a small driveway or lawn, for example. I feel sorry for people who can't do anything without having to use some hi tech motorized tool.
posted on Jan 16, 2015, 10:09 AM 1
Posts: 834; Member since: Jun 23, 2012
It also comes down to time and convenience as well. Lets take coffee makers. Would you really take the time to make proper coffee? or use a machine to make it the way you like in under 10 minutes?
posted on Jan 16, 2015, 12:15 PM 0
Posts: 179; Member since: Aug 19, 2013
Right now i dont have a smartphone, my HTC Desire 816 was wrecked, i am waiting to get the One M8. i use my laptop for emails and browsing and in my 3rd week without a smartphone and i think i am fine.
posted on Jan 16, 2015, 10:10 AM 0
Posts: 391; Member since: Aug 26, 2013
Not really such a big deal - I have done it recently when I was between smartphones. And given that he/she will still have access to laptop and clock in at an office full of connected computers, its shouldn't really be a major event. Disconnect COMPLETELY - then you have my attention.
posted on Jan 16, 2015, 10:13 AM 0
I don't see how u can call it a dumb phone. I rather have a flip phone than a smart phone. People these days can't communicate face to face they Facebook each other face to face. Plus u have better battery life
posted on Jan 16, 2015, 10:42 AM 2
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