THE BLOG

Why Are They Called 'Smart' Phones Anyway?

01/02/2013 15:16 GMT | Updated 02/04/2013 10:12 BST

As a device designed to revolutionise communication, smart phones do an astonishingly thorough job of ensuring no one communicates. The number of times I, and you no doubt, have been speaking to someone while they glance down away from you.

With dead, zombie-eyes, the only signs of life they demonstrate are the small, tell-tale wrist flicks that occur as they scroll through something evidently more interesting than you. Why they are called 'smart' phones I shall never know.

I must at this stage confess, I have an iPhone 4S. A bizarre statement to make while trying to recruit members of my anti-smart phone army, but bear with me. I have only had it since December and, no, it wasn't my choice.

I had previously been using an Alcatel. What do you mean you haven't heard of an Alcatel? In place of the camera, there was a little torch. That is the level I was on. I decided to invest in the cheapest smart phone I could find, soley for my time as news editor on my university newspaper.

I knew I would need to be able to send emails constantly and this was a service my trusty Alcatel just could not provide. I intended to sell it at the end of my tenure, returning to answering calls on something that resembles Lego.

For Christmas however, two friends who were aware of my plan came together and sourced me the much sought after iPhone 4S. Don't get me wrong, I am grateful for their preposterous generosity and thoughtfulness. And what a gift!

Many people would love to be freely handed a smart phone. Especially one they feel has been in someway posthumously touched by the technologically celestial hand of the mighty Mr. Jobs.

It is also competently serving its purpose. I can now answer emails and instruct reporters from anywhere at anytime. I can also share a picture of a pug dog in a hooded jacket I saw on Rye Lane in Peckham with anyone in the world. Who wouldn't want that?

At the risk of sounding so sour people will question whether it is blood or vinegar that pumps through my veins, but smart phones have created a generation of over-sharers.

Just because you have the ability to instantly tell the world that you just saw that guy off that show where they film over-privileged 20-somethings doing... not very much, does not mean you should.

Or just because your phone has fantastic sound quality, does not mean you are obliged to share this fact with the top deck of the 345. Particularly when it is via the medium of gangster rap.

I like eye contact, I like cameras that need film, I like maps made of paper. Smart phones? More like dumb phones.