The Indispensable Mobile Phone

We the 50plus still remember the time when mobile phones didn’t exist.  In fact, we didn’t even have PCs and the Internet growing up.  To the younger generation, it is like the Stone Age!  We the 50plus relied on the newspaper and TV for news and entertainment.  And when we made an appointment, we kept it because there was just no way to contact the other person once we leave the house where our cool land-line is!

I remember my first handphone in my 20s — a stylish red Nokia with black trimmings.  And it didn’t even do text messages.  I could call someone and people could reach me.  Simple as that.

Next came a Motorola flip phone.  It had a very deep and rich ring tone, and I thought flipping the phone open to use it was cool.  It had a short antennae which I use to fish the phone out of my bag; easier than searching for the phone in my bag.

The Motorola was replaced shortly by the Nokia Symbian phone because everyone said that was the in-thing.  I really didn’t like the phone because it was big and broad due to the Qwerty keyboard, like the Blackberry.  No touch-screen technology was available then, thank you very much.

I was really happy to change to a slim and gold Nokia slide phone which cost S$800!  I didn’t mind paying the price because it was limited edition.  Sliding became cooler than flipping.  Guess what?  I left it in a restaurant at Pan Pacific Hotel 3 weeks into owning it and someone took it.  Heartbroken, I paid for another phone, comforting myself that Amex credit card insurance paid for half the price and my company paid the other half (subsidized as part of staff benefits).  So, in reality, I paid only $800 for the 2 phones, when I could have paid only $400 for the first phone if I hadn’t lost it.  Small consolation.

Then came touch-screen technology and I bought a Samsung Touch which I still have today.  I was going to ease myself into the touch-screen function.  No idea what the big deal was now that I am use to touch screen.  Even my laptop, Lenovo Yoga, has touch screen function.  I still touch the screen of everyone else’s laptop, blindly assuming everyone has touch-screen.  Silly me.

Since then, I have always used a Samsung.  Samsung S4, Samsung Note 3 (company issued), Samsung S5, and now Samsung J7 Prime.  The last 2 handphones, I didn’t pay a dime for.  I always recontract when my 2-year is up and ask for any model that I can get for free.  It doesn’t have to be the latest model — whatever I get will always be a later model than what I have been using for 2 years.  That was good enough for me.  $800???  You got to be kidding!  I must be crazy back then.

I don’t understand how people can keep changing phones each time a newer and better model comes out.  If I could, I would keep my phone forever because moving apps and data from one phone to another is a huge hassle, especially for the non-tech savvy me.  I had to change my phone because my S5 battery was going crazy — it took 8 hours to get it charged to 100% and it depleted within a few hours of normal use.  Plus I dropped it one day and the phone screen had a long crack line down the middle, although everyone said it was the tempered glass protector that cracked, not the phone.  I cannot be sure.

Anyway, now I have the J7 Prime, a model which I have never heard of.  The Starhub guy at the counter was very nice, he transferred all my phone contacts from the old phone to the new phone.  And a tech-savvy friend of mine helped to transfer some apps and photos, but not everything transferred over — he didn’t know why.  And I figured out, with the help of Google search, how to transfer my What’s App conversation history into the new phone.  That was enough to get me started on using the new phone.  To date, the new phone is still missing some apps and data that I had in my old phone.  I will get around to transferring/setting up these one day when I feel motivated enough.  Then I need to sync my phone to the phone function in my car so that I can dial and speak hands-free while driving.  So many things to do to get a new phone set up, isn’t it?  Wouldn’t it be great if everything can be transferred at the press of a button? You would think that in this day and age, such an app would exist.  Come on, everyone changes phones, it’s only how often.  And not everyone is tech-savvy enough to know how to transfer apps and data from phone to phone.  How about some help for the 50plus please?

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