My Teenager and Her iPhone6s

iPhone6S, iPhone, smartphone, phone, handheld, technology, device, communications

The iPhone6S and the hand of the teenager that owns it

The iPhone6s was released a few weeks ago with much fanfare, including the tagline “The only thing that’s changed is everything.” This state-of-the-art smartphone promised such unique must-have features as 3D Touch, a more advanced camera, “the next generation of multi‑touch,” the most advanced chip ever in a smart phone, a breakthrough design, advanced security and faster Wi-Fi, all topped off by another omniscient tagline: “An experience unlike any other. On a phone unlike any other.”

Here in my house, its arrival was met with instant jubilation. My 14-year-old daughter made no bones about the fact that she wanted one to replace her quickly obscuring iPhone5. She was ready and willing to pay for it with the money she had saved from her birthday. What could we say? We called our service provider and negotiated the best possible deal on the yet-to-be-released device and within two weeks, it was in her hands. A few hours later it was fully charged and ready to use, much to my daughter’s delight.

Now it’s been in her possession about three weeks and I was curious about it as the focus of a blog article. I wanted to get the scoop from her on what’s so cool about this phone and why it’s such an important part of her life. Here is our interview.

You got your first iPhone (5) two years ago, in July 2013. Do you remember how you felt?

I remember feeling really excited, especially because all my friends already had phones. Now that I had one of my own it made me feel really good. Even though I had an iPod before and it had a lot of features, having an actual phone plan and being able to call people just felt really good.

Now the new iPhone6s has come out, and you’re lucky enough to have one. Why do you like it so much?

Even though most of the features were on my other phone, Apple made them more effective, so everything works better and it’s more efficient and faster. And, there are also a few other different things that make using the phone a lot easier.

Is there any one new feature that sticks out?

I would say the live photos, where you take a picture and if you hold the button, it shows you what happened before you took the picture. So it’s basically taking a video, without using the storage to take a video.

Do you feel bad for me because I still have the iPhone 5?

(She tries to hold back her glee.) Maybe just a little bit, because you might be missing out on the new features. But your phone still does the things that you need it to do, so I think overall that your phone is pretty good for you.

But really when you look me you think that my phone just isn’t as good, right?

Maybe a little bit. I feel more special. (She smiles, consolingly.)

I asked about your favourite new feature. Do you have anything else to add to that?

There are other features that I like as well, like drawing and notes and stuff like that, and there are all these little fast-track features, on the apps. But I think that my favourite features overall would be the live photos.

You use your iPhone every day, right?

Yeah. (Smiles again)

How often each day do you use it?

It depends. At school, I’ll go on my phone a little but in class, it depends on what I’m doing that day. Or I’ll use it at breaks. But on the weekend if I’m not doing anything, I’ll mostly be on my phone. But I wouldn’t say I’m on my phone all the time.

Would your parents say that you’re on your phone all the time?

Well, it just happens that whenever you come to see me I’m on my phone.

Would you say that your phone has help you with your schoolwork?

Yeah, it’s helped me a lot actually because there’s this site called Google Classroom where I can go and see what the teachers have posted. I know that I could get to if from a computer but it’s easier because my phone is with me so I don’t actually have to be home, on a computer. I could just be walking home from school and checking my homework.

Would you admit that your iPhone is sometimes fun and nothing more than fun?

Yeah, sometimes. There are lots of games and apps that don’t really need to be there but they’re just fun to use. Now, since I’ve had it for so long, it’s like a comfort thing. It‘s not like an addiction but you know that if you need to check something. It’s there. If someone is trying to reach you, it’s there.

Why do you think iPhones (or smart phones) are such an important part of teenage life these days?

It’s the way that technology has developed. People are starting to grow up on technology so they’ll be using it more, unlike other people – people like your age. (She laughs.) They didn’t grow up on it. But for kids like me or even younger, growing up on it, they’ll probably use it more often and know more things.

Do you know there was a time when there were no smart phones, social media, Internet, TV, radio, or even phones? How would you like to have lived back then?

Actually, I probably wouldn’t have minded it because I wouldn’t have known that this would be possible. So, I don’t think I would miss it if I didn’t know that it’s there. Also, sometimes I feel that phones take away social interaction and creativity as well. If I don’t have technology and I’m outside, I’ll be more creative, thinking of ways I can entertain myself. Since I have a phone, I just click an app and entertain myself for about 15 minutes.

Answer this question: If I didn’t have an iPhone, I would ______?

Part of me would feel a little apart from everyone else, not quite outcast, because you know that everyone has it now and everyone is using it, so it’s a way to check up on what’s happening. So I might feel a little bit jealous and different from everyone else.

Any closing thoughts?

iPhones are awesome and you should get one. Get the newest one!

I fumble with the memo recording app on my phone and she guides me through the steps, from pressing stop to saving our interview. I’ve done this dozen of times yet somehow I feel inferior compared to her expert skills in navigating the iPhone keyboard. Her iPhone6s keyboard is much larger than mine and for now that’s the primary reason I want the iPhone6s.

Meanwhile, I revel in the fact that she can’t yet drive. I’m still one up in that area.

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