Trading convenience for peace of mind

I successfully completed my digital detox challenge with the MP01, and extended it to 120 hours instead of 48. This was one of the easiest challenges to fulfil.

The MP01 is actually very hard to put away; it’s such a pleasure to communicate with, to carry with you, to hold and to look at. Other people I met during the five day detox were impressed by the phone and its design. Some of my friends even bought one, or are planning to do so after hearing about my experience!

I sent you a postcard by snail mail, it's a picture of the Peace Palace in our city of The Hague. I found it to be appropriate as the MP01 brings peace of mind as well. It gives the user a certain ease of mind, something which you don't want to lose again.

I learned that I’m not that addicted to my smartphone. I hardly felt the urge to look at it, to check messages or email. I don't have my email sent to my smartphone automatically by the way, I have to get it manually.

However, without the latest bells and whistles I did miss some convenient functions of my smartphone. Text (SMS), Whatsapp and Facebook messaging are all pretty similar, so not having them didn’t faze me much, but I did realise that other people rely on them quite heavily and had to get used to contacting me by text message alone. I ended up making more phone calls, which I found personal and pleasant.

Not having the following functions was really annoying.

  • I use my smartphone to pay for car parking in my street. This can only be done by the smartphone app, so I couldn't use this service while using the MP01.
  • I have a Philipps Hue lighting system at home. The lights can only be switched on and off by my smartphone app, so I couldn't do that for 5 days.
  • I take a lot of pictures with my smartphone, and use them as reminders, like a digital diary (I have almost 6,000 on my smartphone). I forgot a lot last week ;-)
  • I missed checking the weather on the go. Let's say when I’m out on the bicycle and don't want to rained on the weather report is very useful, especially in The Netherlands (we have a lot of rain). I tried to look for other options, but got wet twice : I could think of some other functions which I (privately) missed, however I learned that most have an easy replacement which I was glad to use as long as I could keep my MP01 with me.

Well, I guess that was my digital detox challenge, and above are the comments I could make about it. I will end my challenge at Instagram and Twitter now as well. I'm still very, very happy that I was able to take part, and I'm convinced that the MP01 gained a place in my day-to-day life for a long time to come.

Gerard Nijenbrinks

Twitter @nijenbrinks
Instagram @gerardnijenbrinks

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