You’ve probably already heard more people are accessing the web from their mobile devices than desktops (or even laptops) these days. If you haven’t already heard this, chances are you’re reading this on a phone or tablet and can see it’s not an unreasonable claim.
Do you know how much time you spend on your mobile device these days?
Do you know how much time you spend doing what with it?
I was recently reminded how much we can we do with our “phones” these days—beyond blocking spoofed, robocall spam—get directions to any location on the planet (often with street view and realtime traffic information), learn a foreign language (or translate it), record, watch, and broadcast high-definition video, or—my personal favorite—look at recent pictures from the surface of Mars while waiting to watch a rocket flying backwards to land on an automated barge in the ocean.
We are living in the future. That’s for sure.
And yet, we spend a ridiculous amount of our time mindlessly consuming time-wasting, bias-reinforcing crap with these amazing little machines we carry with us everywhere we go.
[ Note: I use a free app called Quality Time to keep tabs on my phone usage. ]
How much time do we spend looking at our phones because we’re bored?
Waiting for a table at the restaurant? Your turn in the barber’s chair? Waiting on hold?
What are you doing right now? Put the phone down for a minute and look around. How many other people are staring at their own tiny screens? What do you think about that?
At 42, I’m old enough to remember rotary phones and life before the internet. I’ve loved the potential of connecting with people and ideas since the beginning, when I was using an AOL CD to explore the world from a 25MHz, Intel-powered PC in a Kansas basement over a 1200 baud Zenith modem connection. Which is to say I’m old enough that I prefer a laptop to any smaller, touchscreen-equipped device. Mobile trends be damned. (Get off my lawn!)
And yet, I regularly find myself thinking about how I might use a tablet to handle all the things I want to do with TGP as we continue growing. Write articles, interview people around the world in realtime for the podcast, etc. It would be nice if my entire TGP toolbox fit in a shoebox. It would be nice if I could truly work from anywhere in the world—with the same hardware.
I guess it goes back to the second-order thinking, reflective experience thing I mentioned the other day.
I can kinda see it, but I need to give it more thought.
Where are you going in life? Is your phone helping?
Something to think about.