Manufacturers are now building smartphones for an average usage of only two years or less. This has forced people to buy new phones even when there is hardly any need. The difference between their old, and new phones might be barely noticeable to them. But they seem to have no choice apart from replacing their old phones which become too buggy or slow for regular use. The difference in price, however, is always significant.
The other day, my sister, Kanika, saw my long-drawn, disappointed face and asked me what the matter was. I told her that my phone had started to get slower and slower. I wanted the latest update. I needed more space.
She stopped me in the middle of my rant only to stare at me. She wanted to hear specifics. She knew me well. I had used my current phone for only 1.5 years. I told her that I wanted to buy a new phone. She knew that this was her time to swoop in and make me see sense.
She asked me to list down all the problems with my current phone. If she couldn’t give me solutions for most of them, she promised she would let me go ahead with my new phone’s purchase.
I started with storage space. I had a lot of pictures, videos, songs and documents stored on my phone. Now I hardly had any space left. I couldn’t delete all of them or transfer them on my laptop. Kanika replied with just two words – “MicroSD card” and “Cloud.”
I looked at her with my eyebrows raised. She said that I could buy a MicroSD card with whatever storage space I felt I would need, and save all my future stuff there, without deleting any of the current ones. She also said that in case my phone didn’t have a slot for a storage card, I could use any of the cloud applications to save all my media, documents and songs there. There were a lot of apps which offered few GBs of space for free.
She was able to convince me on the storage point. Next, I told her about the latest update that my dream phone was offering. She clarified that they were offering it for earlier models too, and that I would just have to wait a little longer.
She also asked me if I precisely needed what they were offering in that update. I answered negatively. I had just wanted the newest look and have my phone feel new. There wasn’t any feature in the latest update that would change my life drastically. So that discussion got over pretty quickly, much to my embarrassment.
I told her my phone was also getting super slow. She said our day to day usage of the phone makes it slow and inefficient. A straightforward way was to back up all our data, and then factory reset the phone. The phone would be as good as new. All the data would still be available. And we only install applications that we need, not want. If a factory reset seemed very overwhelming, she said we could take smaller steps like cleaning our home screens, using lightweight versions of popular apps and browsers, regularly updating apps and switching off auto/background syncing of apps.
This discussion seemed pretty fruitful. The change of expressions on my face, from disappointment to a smile indicated to my sister that I was not going ahead with the purchase for a good six months or maybe even more.4