New phone, who dis?


“Do you have any flip phones?” English teacher Rachel Quezada said. “No, we just have this” a Target employee said, pointing to all the bright orange pay-and-go phones. Quezada picked up the Nokia 3310 and purchased it for a mere $50.

At Kansas City Christian school, the majority of the student body is equipped with an Apple iPhone or some other smartphone. For Quezada, she has had an iPhone since close to the start of college. This year, she traded her iPhone in for a Nokia 3310. This new phone comes with only the essentials – texts, calls, and the game “Snake.”

Why would someone even consider turning in their smartphone with technology growing everyday? There are a lot of factors, each one going against what society tells us how we should handle technology.

“I think the main [factor] was that I wanted to be more productive,” Quezada said. “And actually produce more things. I’m working on a novel, and also I just felt like I was wasting so much time. When I look back on an evening I felt like I didn’t really have anything to show for it. I really didn’t like that feeling.”

In the past, Quezada has attempted social media fasts and has deleted social media apps, all to try and increase productivity. This was not successful. She would claim to do a social media fast for a month and in reality download her social media apps again a week later.

“When I switched to this phone, I actually posted on my Instagram that I switched to this phone because for some reason it felt more like accountability,” Quezada said. “Like, ‘This is what I’m doing now.’ In the past when I did social media fasts it would just be like, ‘I’m trying to do this but I’m not going to tell anybody,’ because I ultimately knew that I would fail at that kind of stuff. Diets, whatever. And this [phone] takes away the factors of, ‘Will I be disciplined enough to do this thing?’”

With her new minimalist phone, Quezada limits her temptation of getting sucked back into social media by eliminating the opportunity to get it on her phone. Even though she does not have access on her new phone, she still has all her accounts and is able to check them on a web browser. She can still check social media, but she eliminated the accessibility of the distraction that comes with it being readily available in her hand.

“I realized even before I switched to this phone, but most of the time when I was opening social apps it was not because it had anything I was expecting to see, it was because I was bored and there was this app here that would entertain me,” Quezada said.

The new phone is clunky, and has archaic predictive texts, but it works for Quezada.

“If I do [go back to using an iPhone] I think it would be in a different season in my life,” Quezada said. “Maybe if I have accomplished some of the things that I want to accomplish now, or if I have kids and that seems practical, I don’t know. Right now this [phone] works for me pretty easily. Especially because I have online interfaces for things that I had apps for.”