I went to a workshop in NY yesterday, and a coworker (that I've never actually worked with, he works in New York) happened to be at my table — with a flip phone!
I asked him about it, and he's been on a flip phone for two months. He does have a smartphone because we have to have a smartphone at work in order to log in to various internal services, but he doesn't carry it with him.
He's found that he's more aware of his surroundings and less generally distracted. This jibes with my accidental experiment without a smartphone, which started last Saturday
and ended Thursday, when I got a loaner phone from work. It's easy to experience but hard to explain, but it feels good to not always have a second option
, which is the case when you have a smartphone.
I probably won't get a cellphone, but I did think of a way to continue to be "smartphone-less" like my coworker. I'm just not going to install anything that is filled with potentially infinite content. e.g. Email, RSS, and social media (though I've already been off that for a year, but you get the point), Slacks that have a lot of content. None of the stuff that you look to when you're slightly uncomfortable or bored. I'll save that for the computer, which has the following limitations:
A) I have to be at specific locations to use it
B) I have usually have something compelling to do at it
Of course, there is a mobile web browser on the smartphone, a window to all of the infinitely scrolling escapist holes. This is a big potential problem; I'm counting on a lot of it requiring logins to dissuade me from using web app version of the escapist holes.