I'd Love a Dumb Phone, But...

02 Jul 2023 | ~3 minute read

I'd love to replace my iPhone with a dumb phone, but I don't think it would ever work in reality.

I was recently perusing Youtube (as I sometimes do) and I came across a video about the Punkt MP02, which is effectively a dumb phone that supports Signal.

As a Signal user myself, this immediately engaged my grey matter and got me thinking about whether I could switch to a dumb phone, like the Punkt.

The Punkt MP02
The Punkt MP02

My knee-jerk reaction was "this looks great, I could definitely replace my iPhone with this. How much is it..." but after giving it some thought, I decided I most definitely could not ditch my iPhone for a dumb phone.

You can pick up a Punkt MP02 for around £200 - £300, by the way.

Thinking it through

After taking a minute to actually think this through, it quickly became apparent that, no, I couldn't replace my iPhone. And that's not because I'm addicted to a particular app; having an iPhone just makes my life easier.

I don't just use Signal for messaging. I also use WhatsApp and iMessage regularly, so the Punkt would already be out.

Yeah, I could live without WhatsApp and iMessage - people could still SMS me...or, you know, call...but it would make it more difficult for people to contact me.

It's also the other, small, quality of life stuff that would make the transition extremely difficult for me.

For example, all my music is on Apple Music, and I don't have the time (or inclination) to manage my own music library any more. I could do it, but I have other things I'd prefer to spend my time on. I like the fact that if anyone in my family hears a song we like, it's very likely the song is available in Apple Music and we can quickly add it to a playlist.

If I managed my own music library, I'd also need a way of playing it everywhere I listen, so that would mean an media player of some kind. Then there's Audiobooks and Podcasts - I don't even know how I'd listen them on the go, without my iPhone.

There's also the camera - I don't use it often, but it's nice to snap little memories here and there. Plus, my wife tends to send me pics on the regular.

Finally there's all the other "stuff" - Apple Maps for navigation, IMBD for looking up that person who I recognise, but I don't know where from, mobile banking, email, the weather and of course, the web browser.

None of it is that important, and some of it could probably be done on the Punkt too, but it's all so easy on the iPhone.

It's a no from me...

So I have to ask myself - if I already own the iPhone, and it makes my life easier, why would I replace it? Especially if replacing it means I'd have to buy at least 2 new devices (a new phone and a media player), as well waste a tonne of time managing unnecessary admin, all while making myself more difficult to contact.

In hindsight, keeping the iPhone is a no-brainer. I love the idea and simplicity of having a dumb phone, but the reality is that life isn't that simple and it would be a hindrance for me.

What about you? would/could you ditch your smart phone for a dumb phone? Have you tried it? I'd love to hear about your thoughts/experiences with all this.

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