What sparked your interest in the mobile industry?

Anna Scantlin
Contributing Editor from Kansas City, MO
Published: August 3, 2013

If you're reading this article, you've probably landed at PhoneDog for one primary reason: you have a passion for phones. You and I are both here for the same reason, which is sharing our opinions and ideas about current events in this vast mobile world of ours. New phones, advancements (and regressions?) in technology, and changes within the industry is something that we all, for whatever reason, look forward to discussing. But what brought you here? Why are you interested in mobile technology today?

My interest in cell phones started early, about the time that my brother got his first cell phone. It was a little Kyocera Rave phone from Virgin Mobile, and although today it would be considered one of the most primitive cell phones ever, back then it was the bee's knees (to my 13-year-old self, that is). Of course, at the young age of 13 there was virtually no reason for me to carry a cell phone. If I stayed after school for an activity I could use the office phone to call my parents. If I was at a friend's house, I could use their house phone. Even when I tried to use the "But what if there's an emergency?" argument, my parents wouldn't budge on the subject. Simply put, at 13 I should not have the same priveleges as my 17-year-old brother. Of course, they had a point, but that didn't stop me from wanting that forbidden fruit that was known as a cell phone anyway.

Over the next year I continued to try and convince my parents that, as a young adult, I needed one. My friends were starting to get cell phones because we were going to be starting high school soon. High school, in my eyes, was my one and only chance to define myself. I needed a cell phone to keep in touch with all my new friends and to be able to fit in. Were my parents really going to take that away from me?

Yes. Yes, they were. Even at the age of 14 it was still too young to be messing with cell phones, especially if my parents were going to end up paying for it. But at some point, and I'm not sure how I managed to do this, but I convinced them that I could have a cell phone of my very own on one condition: that I get a job. So it came down to this. I could spend my youth slaving away in order to get a cell phone, or I could just deal with the fact that I didn't have a cell phone and move on. I had been dreaming about the moment that my parents would let me have a cell phone for more than a year at this point, and I wasn't about to let the opportunity slip through my fingers. I decided to take a job in order to get one. The only problem at this point was finding a place that would hire a 14-year-old. Smooth move, parents. I should have known there was a catch.

Fortunately, I had acquired minor skills in Googling at this point, and I was able to find out that the local amusement park actually hired kids my age to work during the summers. Perfect! Not only would I be able to make enough money to buy a cell phone, but I would also get free admission into the only theme park for miles. It's like a teenager's dream! Except for the whole working aspect, which wasn't fun at all, but I suppose I could thank my parents for having the sense for making me work for something that I wanted.

And perhaps it was then that I truly began taking a serious interest in cell phones. Although my brother's cell phone is what initially got me started, it was when I finally had enough money to buy a cell phone and afford a monthly plan that I started to do some research on which phone I really wanted. This was going to be the first big purchase that I earned the money to purchase, so I didn't want to mess up. Of course, not having a lot of knowledge in phones at all, I messed up. My first phone was a Pantech PN-215 on Verizon Wireless. It wasn't the best phone on the market at the time, and I chose probably the most pitiful prepaid plan I could have ever decided on (Verizon Wireless INPulse plans - $0.25 per text message? That lasted me all of a week). But that didn't stop me, for I continued doing more and more research to find better phones and better plans and eventually, doing this kind of unnecessary research became a hobby for me.

And, well, here I am. The mere desire to be just like my brother is what gave me an interest that I never knew would blossom into the blooming industry that it is today. Who could have known a mere relic like the Rave, whose selling feature was a small but powerful flashlight on the back, would ever become something like what we see today? Pretty fascinating stuff.

But enough about me, readers: how did you end up here? What's your story, and what got you interested in the mobile industry? Share your stories with us in the comments below!

Images via Wikimedia

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