But it was around that time that I realized I was spending all this time in a rehearsal hall, away from a computer and away from internet. Not that I was especially popular and getting mounds of emails, but I did feel very disconnected and behind the times. Especially after watching singers check their email and respond during breaks on their Blackberries or other such smart phones at the time.
Then years later, my computer had to go into the shop. It was too difficult to solve through the Apple Store, so it had to be sent off. Therefore, my only internet access was at work. Now, unlike most of my friends and colleagues, I have a domain name email versus just having a Gmail or Hotmail or Yahoo! account. And I could check my other email accounts on my slightly intelligent phone, but checking my main email could not happen. I felt very crippled by that.
Around that time was when the first iPhone came out. But I just couldn't jump on the bandwagon - even being the Apple fan I am - and I still had some loyalty to Sprint. But I learned more and more about the iPhone, and it was around the time that the 3G came out that the pull for a smart phone really really started to eat at me. In fact, my very good friend, W, was looking at upgrading to a smart phone and was trying to figure out how to make Verizon phones sync with her computer (because she didn't want to leave Verizon at the time).
We did a lot of debating and I decided that if she made the jump, I would too, contract be damned. So she did and I did. And I haven't really looked back.
I can't honestly say how I did my job to the effectiveness I have without it. There have been places I've worked where my internet/email access on my phone and/or my photo text capability have been absolutely vital for things to get done in a timely manner. There are so many appealing features that I tend not to notice its drawbacks (no Flash, sometimes questionable signal). The benefits outweigh the others - and I'm not a heavy data user and certainly don't use it to the fullest extent of its abilities.
It was the best investment I have ever made - for the benefit of my personal and my professional life. I don't regret it for one bit.
And just the same, I love the ability to put it down and walk away from it.
So thank you, Mr. Jobs, for dreaming up the iPhone, and helping make my life a little bit better.