What was your gateway phone?

Anna Scantlin
Contributing Editor from  Kansas City, MO
| May 17, 2014


Trying to keep things light this weekend, when trying to think of something to write about I started to consider what actually got me here at PhoneDog in the first place. I’ve always enjoyed writing, but of course simply enjoying writing isn’t exactly enough to land me a job on a mobile tech website - I also, of course, needed a deep-rooted enjoyment from mobile technology.


My love for all things mobile started fairly young, probably around 12 or 13 when my brother first had his first cell phone. He was always connected and always on it, talking to his friends. I wanted that connection. Although it wouldn’t be until a year or two later when I got a job of my own and purchased my own phone and minutes, my real love for phones (and more importantly, how they work and what they do) wouldn’t come until much later. Flip phones were there purely for entertainment, but it was my first smartphones that really got me interested in the more intricate bits of phones.


The first smartphone that really got me into things was, incidentally, probably the worst phone I ever owned: the HTC Touch Diamond (click that for the PhoneDog review that initially sold me on the device - and to be fair, mine was purchased after the phone was pretty old news). It’s funny how a phone that I absolutely loathed is what initially caused me to scour the Internet, desperate for a fix - for anything - that would make it perform better. I was in a position where purchasing a new smartphone was out of the question, so what else is one to do when you’re left with a phone that has trouble transitioning between pages and loading text messages? You look for a way to fix it. Fortunately, XDA Developers were there to help, and that’s when I first discovered how root a phone and flash ROMs.


At first, learning how to flash ROMs was done mostly out of necessity; as I mentioned, my phone had a hell of a time trying to get anything done in a timely manner, if at all. It wouldn’t be until I got my first few Androids where I actually got an enjoyment of rooting and flashing ROMs, and did it mostly as a hobby. Even if my phone ran just fine, I always knew that things could always be made better through this method. Even when I got my iPhone 4S, I couldn’t help but to jailbreak it when I had the chance (although I don’t think performance was really affected, but it did make customizing my iPhone possible on a deeper level).


But rooting and flashing ROMs aren’t the only thing that I like about phones. The issues that arose with my Touch Diamond, among other duds that I had used, were also a direct result of not knowing what it was I was looking at. I didn’t know anything about processors, RAM, memory, cameras, or anything like that. Things were pretty simple to me back then, but if it wasn’t for my duds I would have probably never looked into the issues to make sure I didn’t have the same problems later down the line.


I didn’t see it at the time, but I have a lot to be thankful for when it comes to some of the more infuriating phones that I owned. For a while I looked at them as failures, but really they ended up making me learn a lot more about the industry than I ever thought I would want to learn. It was because of this knowledge that I wanted to make this industry a part of my life.


Now you know my story on why I’m so involved in this industry, but we want to hear from you guys now. When it comes to your interest in mobile tech, how did it all start? Maybe it was your first phone, maybe it was your worst or your best phone, or maybe it’s the phone you own now! So readers, what was your gateway phone? Let us know your stories in the comments below!


Images via Phone Arena, Engadget