Time For a New Phone
I can remember a time when upgrading my phone was a major source of excitement. If there was something shiny and new available, then I had to have it. More often than not it was simply the allure of the next big thing and there were no significant gains or benefits in upgrading. Unless you count that vicarious short term fix one gets when conspicuously consuming. At the time I was happy to remain on the technology treadmill and had no intention of getting off. However in the last decade there’s been a major shift in my relationship with consumer electronics. I now buy according to my needs rather than just for the sake of having what’s currently perceived as best. Once you cease to see gadgets and electrical devices as fashion accessories but simply as functional tools, then a lot changes. Furthermore it changes for the better.
As part of my phone tariff with Vodafone, I can upgrade my handset every eighteen to twenty four months. It used to be once a year but the high cost of contemporary smartphones has forced them and other vendors to extend contract length. I’m currently eligible for a new handset, as I last replaced my phone in January 2014, so have spent some time this weekend perusing the latest models. Frankly I had no pressing requirement to replace my HTC One. It may not be the best phone I’ve owned but it still performs perfectly adequately. However as an opportunity has presented itself, I think it’s time to return to being a Samsung customer. So despite the lack of an FM radio (which is a major selling point for me) I have chosen to upgrade to a Samsung S6. I have also retained my current tariff of unlimited UK call minutes, unlimited texts and a 4GB data allowance each month with no cost increase. As someone who is self-employed and uses their phone a lot, this is a very good deal.
With regard to selling my old handset, there is a buoyant second hand market in the UK. Unfortunately the recent release of several new models has caused some older handset to suddenly drop in price. As a result I’ve only managed to sell my old phone for £41. With regard to my initial point, a decade ago I would have been lying in wait for the courier delivery, eagerly awaiting my new phone. Messing with the settings and migrating all my data would have been a pleasure to be relished. It’s funny how ones passions and priorities change over time. I’m having my new phone delivered to my parents address for reasons of security and probably won’t be able to collect it until mid-week. Although I'm sure I will be satisfied with the Samsung S6 over the months to come, it will remain in my view, just "a phone". I wonder how long it will be before the public's love affair with gadgets ends and the perception of technology returns once again to something more practical rather than aspirational?