If It’s a Smart Phone, Why Does it Act Stupid?

(1896 Swedish Telephone – Wikimedia)

As you may recall, I was very attached to my “dumb” phone. All I could do on it was text and make phone calls. And all I wanted from a phone was to text and make phone calls. You’ll notice that I am speaking in the past tense. That’s because my carrier said that it was not economical to support that technology anymore.

How dare they? They make so much money, I’m sure they could write off whatever it costs them to support me and the three or four other people who still have that phone.

So a few months ago I got an Android. The more technologically progressive members of the family hate Apple – something about them wanting to control all aspects of our data. I don’t really care. I have hated being on the telephone since I was a teenager.

Yes, I know. Being on the telephone no longer means you have to try to be interested in what happened to Millie’s mother-in-law’s niece’s husband for three hours while you can only move three feet. Or inadvertently picking up a call from that friend you’ve been avoiding for six months since she told you that everyone else thought you were getting fat, but she didn’t.

First thing I did was to enter everyone’s phone number. My SIM card was so old it wouldn’t transfer to the new phone. I opened the contact page. The first line wanted the name. I looked around; there’s no keyboard. Oh. You have to tap on the field to get the keyboard.  Went down to phone number. Had to tap the phone to get the keyboard back up. The phone’s not smart enough to figure out that if I put a name in, I’m probably going to have something else to enter?

I wasn’t available the first time I received a call. I got a notification that I had missed a call and should call xx number. I didn’t know anyone at that number, so I ignored the message. The second time I got the message, I asked my son why I kept getting calls from that number. He didn’t even roll his eyes when he explained to me that it was the number for voice mail, not the number that was calling. So I have to pay to retrieve my messages? Yes, that’s the way everyone does it now.

I’m beginning to see why they wanted me to change phones.

I heard my phone ringing. There’s a sort of target-looking thing in the center of the screen. I supposed I needed to press that. Nothing. There’s a red phone at the bottom of the screen; I pressed that. Nothing. The call went to voice mail. Of course.

At dinner, my husband and son explained that I need to swipe from the target thingy to the right to answer the phone. If I swipe to the left, I disconnect them. The red phone at the bottom is to hang up. If I have a red phone to disconnect, why would I need to swipe left? Just because.

I left my husband a text, and didn’t hear back from him. He said he didn’t get it. I tried a few more times over the next few days with no luck. He said that maybe the software wasn’t working right in my phone, so at dinner he tried sending me a text. Hummmm. The text arrived. I responded, and it went to his cell phone. I tried to text him. Nothing.

Finally, he looked at my phone. He told me that I was texting to his work phone. How did that happen? I had gone to his icon and sent the text. The first number assigned to him is his cell phone; why would it send it to the work phone?

That’s not how you’re supposed to send texts. You’re supposed to go to Contacts and tap on the message icon for the correct number. It’s not smart enough to just use the first number?

You call people the same way. Go to Contacts and choose the phone symbol by the correct number. This is not making my life easier. I may go back to memorizing people’s numbers.

I asked my daughter how to send a text to two people at a time. I was out of town relaxing at a retreat and had wanted to let her and my husband both know I had arrived safely. She told me there was an icon near where I typed the message. I still can’t find it.


(Next I try the camera)


7 thoughts on “If It’s a Smart Phone, Why Does it Act Stupid?

  1. LOL! I feel your pain! I recently bought a new car that had the capability of becoming a telephone if I had a smart phone.

    I’d kept my flip phone for years because it is frustrating to get an automated system where you have to “converse” with a machine and wade through a dozen cues to learn what number to punch to get to that one thing you want: A HUMAN BEING! I mean, while I listen to the prompts, the numeric screen goes away, and I can’t figure out how to bring it back! A flip phone, at least, has a real numeric keyboard, not some electronic one.

    When I first got the smart phone, I managed somehow to get my car to recognize it and I made my first phone call on my car while sitting in the parking lot of the place where I got the phone.

    Later, when I got my first call at home, I had the same problem you did when trying to answer it: How was I to know I swiped right from that circle business you mentioned? Caller ID told me who called, but i couldn’t get the damn thing to return the call!

  2. So I went out to the car to return the call.

    Later, another call came in, and I went out to the car to answer it since I knew by then I could answer the phone there, if not on the smart phone. Ridiculous!

    Once I finished the car call, I return to the house, and a call came in as I walked in the door. It was from the hospital, but it was the switchboard number, meaning I wouldn’t know who it actually was from since all out-going calls show the switchboard number, not the extension or the specific person or unit making the call. I had to answer it or I would miss an important call and not know who to call back! I accidentally swiped to the right from that circle business, and learned how to answer the phone!

    I’m still cussing and learning on the smart phone, but i do love the photo quality and the ease with which i can send photos to my computer via email from my email on the phone, something I managed to set up by some miracle.

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