Tuesday, April 26, 2016

A Generational Difference

The other night, Sue and I found ourselves at a gathering. We were the youngest at almost 70.

None of us, representing 5 households, had a smart phone. A few of us, perhaps all, had old-fashioned,  dumb cell phones, and I think all those who did just used pay-as-you-go cards because we really have them for emergencies — not necessarily dire emergencies, so let's say exigencies rather. I think you get my drift.

We all at the gathering used computers although very little for some, but they were in each of the homes. Some also have iPads or iPods. Like Sue, one lady uses her iPad for emergencies instead of a phone. That's what Sue does; her iPad has a cellular card while mine doesn't. So she usually takes her iPad with her when she's out, and I port the dumb cell phone.

So you see (don't you?), we're not simply old fuddy duddies or luddites who are totally out of it, but we have lived a long time without smart phones and can continue manage our lives without them. At this point in time none of us seemed to see the need to upgrade although I certainly wouldn't mind. It's an expense I can do without, however.

The younger generation, which seems to extend at least to folk in their forties live through smart phones, which have become GoTo devices. They go with them everywhere, and they use them habitually. Meanwhile, I still marvel at the computer. What a life-changer that was for me!

They aren't wrong. Neither are we. It's just a generational difference.

Oops, excuse me; my iPad just beeped, and then this geezer luddite is going to listen to an audiobook on his iPod. Speaking of iPods, back just over 10 years (or so) ago, I was the first in the family to own one. I even beat the kids to it. So there.

19 comments:

Ginger said...

Way to go, AC! Great post! I'm expected to carry a smartphone for my work, but the minute I quit working (in 13 years), I'm going to dump that for a dumb phone as well.

Actually, I think some young people are dumping the smartphones, as well. A young Canadian couple I know who are down here so he can go to medical school, have cut their expenses by dumping the phones altogether. Incredible. And sometimes inconvenient when I want to invite them to join me, last-minute--on an adventure. I do wonder when he'll get to the point in his medical training that he is required to carry a phone...

Vicki Lane said...

My husband and I (both 73) have dumb phones. The expense of the smart phone deters us . . .and I don't want to be one of those folks who is ALWAYS looking at their phone. The younger generation seems to prefer texting. I'm old school -- I'll stick with email.

Kay said...

I'm afraid I'm sucked into the iPhone and can't leave home without it...sigh... For good or bad, it's become indispensable for me. Most of my friends are 60-75 and half are as bad as me. I also have an iPad, Kindles and Fires. We don't have an iPod though. ;-)

Ruth said...

I have an unlocked smart phone but no data plan. I add data if I am travelling out of the country. I buy my own refurbished phones to keep my ancient and ridiculously cheap phone plan of $17.62 a month. I like the way the iPhone integrates with my imac and ipad and I use the phone to listen to music and downloaded podcasts in the car and at work. My husband inherited our daughter's old iPhone 4 and we have a pay as you go plan for it with no data. We both prefer to text each other from work because it is less intrusive than a phone call. Smart phone addiction is a real problem imo, socially and also on our roadways.

KGMom said...

I represent another point of view--I try to keep up with technology, including having owned Android smart phones, and now an I-phone. And I find real satisfaction in mastering things, while saying to myself "I'm not THAT old" even though I am.
Plus with our two children miles away from where we are, the smart phone has become a way to participate in their daily lives. My son signed me up for SnapChat so now every day I see a photo or a short video and thus watch as my far away grandchildren grow up. It's not the same as having them in the next town, but I'll take it--as opposed to not knowing anything.

Marie Smith said...

My concern with the technology is that it isolates some people who will use the phone etc. rather than actually speak to the people around them. Will we lose the art of conversation? Then there is the problem of distracted driving. We need a happy medium where technology is concerned. We aren't there yet and it will not be soon I fear.

ADRIAN said...

I enjoy computers in any shape or from but don't have a smart phone or an I- pad.
I'm sure that I'd find a use for one but there are other things to occupy me.

Jayne said...

I am 54 and will freely admit that if I leave the house without my phone, no matter how far I've gotten, I will turn around to go fetch it. I feel completely vulnerable and naked without it. Like some major calamity will certainly befall me, and how will I call anyone? Oy... it's sad what we've evolved to in some ways, but there it is. The price for technology is anxiety about not having it.

Linda Kay said...

Oh, I could never go back, and am amazed at how many still don't use the modern technology. I force myself to learn to use them. The maps and the search and the email feature are all really special things to be able to access.

Haddock said...

Yes you have said it right...... we have lived a long time without smart phones and can continue to manage our lives without them.
Learn to survive in any condition.

Tabor said...

I had an 83 year-old as a house guest earlier this month and with some glitches he did seem to be able to use his ipod and ipad rather effectively.

Mage said...

We are not apple folks. PC's for us, and PC's with Windows 7. We love our computers, and we find our lives greatly enhanced by them. Photos, blogs, even G has a blog that he doesn't update often enough. He uses 3 computers all the time. I have two....one an antique that I use for a a backup. There's a lap top and a tablet. LOL Himself even has a data plan tho he doesn't often use it.

I spent way too many years on the phone all day for a job many years ago, and I never fully recovered. I have one of those fancy phones, but only the phone is activated. I use it so rarely, pay as I go, that it only cost me ten bucks to use last year.

Perhaps we are isolated from the modern world. I have thought that.

altar ego said...

It took me a long time to move to smart phone, and we did so to make it easier to be in touch with our kids. I confess that it is indispensable when we travel (drive), helping us find restaurants and the cheapest gas. But I always tell people to call me on the landline. I am not attached at the hip to my mobile device. I'm grateful to be part of a select group of luddites!

Mary Gilmour said...

I'm 74 and have a phone on basic plan for phone calls only. But, like one of your commenters above, I do like to keep up with technology. I started playing with computers in the mid 1980's with a Kaypro clone. Yes, a life changer for me too.
This week I just upgraded to a new computer, Windows 10 and a new (and expensive, whine) version of my photo editor and drawing programs. Also have an iPad.
Learning Windows 10 a little easier than I was lead to believe. What I am finding hardest is remembering all the passwords to apps and things I don't use a lot.
Enjoying your new commitment to blogging.

TexWisGirl said...

your last comment made me laugh. :) i have a smart phone, but prefer using my laptop for anything online if i can. the youngsters i work with use their phones for everything, it seems. mine stays with me at all times and i use its camera a lot, but don't use 1/8 of what i could on it. so i guess i'm in middle ground territory at 52.

Beatrice P. Boyd said...

While I don't consider myself a technology geek, I will admit to owning an iPhone, iPad iPod, Mac and a Kindle PaperWhite. Each device is used for a different purpose and never all at the same time - the phone is carried with me nearly all the time for emergencies and taking a photo of something interesting (or not, the iPod is for listening to podcasts while at the hymn or in the kitchen, the Mac is for blogging and of course other uses, the iPad is a news reader and also used to play word and card games. Formerly I was using a Windows PC, but switched to Mac so everything would tie together. I still admit to being confused by all the tips and tricks but try to learn things on my own by searching online.

Jennifer A. Jilks said...

You are terribly funny! Dumb Cell PHone DCP, we have one. Only two people have its number.
I like my laptop and use it, then put it down. Our ipods we use all the time. The iPad I use for travael, we bought my son-in-=law's old one! He's an encryption engineer!

Donna said...

Love my IPhone, IPad...Mac...I'm just an Apple Girl.
But, if I ever retire, will have to go another way with the phone I think...
hughugs

Jim Flack said...

I have a "dumb" cell phone, too. It's an LG with the tiny keyboard. I thought I was really doing something to upgrade to it from a "flip phone". I use Tracfone, which is a pay-as-you-go plan. It serves me well. I even had phone service in Montana where my daughter lived when she didn't have it on her smart phone.
I text more than I talk on it, but I do try to carry it with me when I am out and about, just in case I fall or have car trouble.
I entered the "tablet" era with a Kindle Fire. It is a small one which I use mostly for downloading e books. I got it for Christmas last, and I already am in the mood for the new 10.1 inch one. Maybe next month when heat and lights won't so spendy. Or maybe I will get one for my birthday next week!