|Photo by Wendell.|
For the last six months, I've had the opportunity to serve as an ambassador for Verizon. During this time, I got to test a few products such as the Fitbit One activity tracker, the Razr Maxx HD phone with an amazing battery life and the Samsung Note 3 with a clear, large screen.
I'm not a complete technology nut, but I'm more tech-savvy than the majority of women my age. I have enjoyed learning about each device by using them, by attending webinars, by reading reviews and by talking with other Verizon ambassadors about their experience.
I have also enjoyed showing my friends how these devices work. The most common response from my midlife guests attending house parties hosted by me and Cheryl was this: "Whoa, I had no idea there were so many products and services available."
|An array of Verizon Products.|
There's an entire world of possibility out there. I just need to step a little further into that space. And it's really not that difficult to use the devices. It's just a matter of doing it.
For example, I used a GPS feature for the first time with this program. I still like to consult maps before I get in the car, but that's a really wonderful tool when I'm lost or when I'm tired or when it's dark.
I also have decided that I see the benefit of carrying both a phone and a mini-tablet. Too often, I'm on the phone wanting to access my calendar or my web browser. I have to write things down, hang up, work my phone, and then call the person back. If I had both devices, I could use my tablet to find information that supports and enriches my phone conversations.
I do have to concede that at times I felt a bit overwhelmed, especially when I was carrying three phones by the end of the program because I was carrying my original phone knowing that I would soon be using it again. I was very interested when working with tech gurus who are completely immersed in the world of electronic devices--specs, features, apps, upgrades, service programs, etc. It's an interesting subculture to observe.
By the conclusion of the program (which is today), I have decided to just hold steady with the devices that I had prior to the program. However, I am extremely willing to change in the near future. Right now, I work at home at a desktop computer as a blogger and an online instructor. I'm not out and about very much.
If I had a job -- like being a real estate agent -- that took me around the region, I would definitely switch to Verizon for its fast and widespread coverage. Then I will invest the time and money to incorporate a device more fully into my daily life, into my psyche, into my identity.
I can see a second culture emerging where manipulating technology expertly is key to being a consumer, a citizen, a community member in various subcultures. Humankind has a long history surrounding the development and employment of techne, which is really more a process than just an object like a codex or a car or a wireless phone. It becomes a way of thinking, of being, of interacting. In my own subculture of my local congregation, I can see technology changing processes and identity.
|Photo by ctoppan|
|Photo by ctoppan|
I won't be able to covey the cultural knowledge that I have spent decades developing. If I want to pass on what I know, I must adapt my knowledge base to these emerging technologies. Change or die.
My "Big Upgrade" might happen when I get a different job that takes me away from my desktop, when we move and have to choose a new network, or when I launch my kids in a few short years. If I upgrade now, my kids will want the same devices, so any cost I adopt will be multiplied by 3!
So when am I making the move to upgrade to a more powerful network? to a more powerful phone? to using more features and apps? to buying a tablet?
|photo by umdnews|
Then I can bring my tablet to the nursing home where I volunteer and to the Sunday School class where I teach. (Hmmm. I do have a birthday coming up soon.)
Technology and Quality of Life