I had similar issues when I left Facebook. The withdrawal wasn’t as bad as I thought it would be, but it was still difficult at times.
I also ditched daily news browsing when I realized that I could either pursue my dreams or I could get bogged down in the day-to-day drama of decisions that my government isn’t capable of making by people who never really had the intellectual or moral capacity to lead other people in the first place.
I do catch the occasional NPR news story on the way to work, though I listen to music more often. I never watch broadcast TV or anything else like that. I realized this morning that our, (the US), presidential election “season” is about 2 years of never-ending horse race updates. What the hell, man?
I have a love hate relationship with my phone - I hate the temptation to always check in on whatever is going on (facebook/twitter - fail videos…) - so to combat that I try to limit “friends” and what I follow.
But there’s enough real useful things with a smartphone that I really enjoy:
Photos - I have kids - always having ability to take nice photos anywhere is great!
Shopping - when I am out shopping being able to do a quick price/review check is quite handy!
Directions - Always useful!
Keeping track of family - we share our location with each other so we know where everyone is. The Mrs and can see where I am on my commute home - I can see where my daughter is at etc.
Diabetes - my daughter has glucose monitor that my wife and I can follow and will raise an alarm if her blood sugar goes low. We can then call her to make sure she is ok (for folks that don’t know if your blood sugar goes to low you drop into a coma and that’s it… - so this feature has at least once saved her life)
Apple watch used to change music while streaming to bluetooth speaker. Ok - this is just silly but really makes me smile. It also totally doesn’t justify the cost of these things, but it’s pretty fun to pause/change the volume/song from my watch.
Texting what’s on the shopping list while shopping has saved many a return trip to the store (so, reducing gas usage and obviously saving the planet (that’s a joke)).
Watching movies on an airplane
Of course none of the key features are the actual phone piece - which gets used maybe once a month when I can’t understand what the text message was about.
Recall on a lads night out sometime around Easter break 1997 lost my phone, a cheap off the shelf Ericsson GA 628 ‘brick’
No biggie really, because back then they’re basically a glorified ‘pocket’ calculator, main difference being you could receive or make calls without relying upon hunting down the nearest public telephone booth.
Nowadays, loose a smartphone…phittt - 80% of ones life blanked in an instant : /
I guess dependant on viewpoint, an absolute pita or necessary evil these devices have morphed into.
Wait everybody, all these things have their use. Smartphones are good when on the go - on a bus, train, plane or to find a way in a city and when no office or other serious work is needed. Mostly for contact (IM/calls/texts) and relaxation (games/as an MP3&MP4/YouTube). Tablets are great for Skype as videocalls don’t need a laptop size screen and resolution to be comfortable. Also, for the same reason, internet and social media. Laptops are semi-stationary due to e.g. office (spreadsheets, documents etc.) or CG work, like Blender, on the go.Full productivity anyway. Hence, I don’t hate any of them.