Flip Phone Challenge Complete

Author: Jake Bauer | Published: 2020-12-10

Last week I challenged myself to use a flip phone for one week straight. It turns out that it really wasn’t too hard to get rid of my Android phone and start exclusively using the flip phone. I’ve decided I’m going to keep using this flip phone as long as I can.

The experience has been great. Calling and texting is incredibly simple. I start pressing numbers on the keypad and the phone does the thing. I don’t have to unlock my phone, tap on an app, then tap on the little keypad button, then suffer the 500ms delay between pressing a number and having it show up on the screen. It’s the little annoyances which add up with modern technology that makes using relatively limited devices such as a flip phone feel just that much better.

I don’t use my phone at all outside of calling and texting now. I’ve totally freed myself from the burden of being always connected and (nearly) always available. When I turn off my computer that’s it; I am disconnected from everything but people who need to urgently call or text me. I also no longer wake up and check on everything while lying in bed for 20 minutes. I get up, get ready, then head to my computer. The same goes for falling asleep: when I’m in bed to sleep, I sleep. I don’t lie there for 20-30 minutes browsing things.

By the time I got to the end of the week, I had only used up ~1/2 of the phone’s charge. Part of it is indeed that I don’t use it nearly as much as I did my Android phone, but it’s nice to not have to charge my phone everyday or worry about it running out of battery by the end of the day.

The only drawback I can see to using this flip phone instead of a smartphone is that I won’t be able to listen to music or podcasts on the go when we all start having to commute again. It’s unfortunate, but I could always either get a portable music player or maybe bust out my cassette-based Walkman again. (Recording a podcast onto a cassette, then playing it on my commute… now that’s an idea.)

To sum it all up: I really honestly do not miss my Android phone. It was more a source of annoyance and distraction than a utility in my daily life. I feel more free and much happier using a phone that simply can’t do much but be a phone.