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iPhone 4: Don't Want, Will Buy
June 10, 2010 - 9:37pm

3 Reasons Why I Don't Want an iPhone 4:

1. Design: I love my Pantech Breeze, a phone that CNET describes as "ideal for the elderly as well as those with vision problems" (neither category that I've yet to enter). Seriously, I like a small clamshell phone that only does calling, with an occasional text message to my 12 or 13 year old.

2. Attention: I am learning enough about the limits of my rational brain (please read Dan Ariely's amazing new book The Upside of Irrationality) to know that I'll be distracted by an iPhone. My kids will be trying to talk to me, and I'll be engrossed in FaceTime or playing games, or reading the Web on the great new iPhone 4 screen. Don't believe this is a danger? Check out Matt Richtel's NYTimes article: "Hooked on Gadgets, and Paying a Mental Price."

3. Lock-In: I'm already an AT&T customer (the only service that works at my house), but I'm still concerned about the two year lock-in. As I come to the end of my current contract I'm thinking the way to buy cell phones is a "pay as you go" service. Fact is, I don't talk on my cell all that much - buying only the minutes I need might work well for me.

3 Reasons Why I'm Going to Buy an iPhone 4:

1. Our Students: We need to be interacting and becoming comfortable with the devices that our students will be using. Our students will not distinguish between devices, platforms, and screens - they will expect that all of their curricular and institutional content works on whatever device they currently happen to be using. We need to walk in the shoes of our students, which means using the same devices that they do.

2. Mobile Learning: Even if I'm not so interested in consuming mobile learning through a smart phone, I know that my students will be very interested in doing so. The iPhone 4 will make mobile learning an even more compelling proposition, particularly with the new and improved screen. We need to make sure that all of our educational content works on the dominant mobile devices.

3. The Future: Like it or not, if you work in learning technology you need to live somewhat in the future. If you believe that the future of learning is at least partly mobile (as I do), then the risk of not proactively going up the learning curves outweighs any benefits in waiting to see if this future really develops.

Will you be getting an iPhone 4?


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