Call People With My Smartphone?! Why?

Missed calls log on iPhone — Screenshot of my iPhone (Eric Farmer).

Who Even Calls People Anymore?!

Why do I have a phone and never call anybody on it (Except my mom. Of course. Love you!).

I am going to try to explain this behavior in this Medium story!

How I Really Use My “Phone”

Here is a list of some of the things I use my phone for. This list is just the things I could think of while writing this story.

  • Browsing social media.
  • Chatting on apps like Discord.
  • Checking my bank account information.
  • Looking at my investments.
  • Making and reading notes.
  • Making phone calls.
  • Making web searches.
  • Playing mobile games.
  • Reading articles, books, stories, etc.
  • Rewards programs.
  • Sending and reading emails. But let’s be honest. I only read emails on my phone.
  • Sending texts.
  • Shopping apps.
  • Two-factor authentication with apps or text messages.
  • Using a calculator.
  • Using a web browser.
  • Using Calendar apps to plan and schedule events.
  • Using work related apps to clock in and out and check other work related information.
  • Writing and creating documents.

There Is Nobody to Call

I mentioned in the opening paragraph I call my mom often. But other than her, I rarely call people.

My family? I call them occasionally and chat. But there are other ways to chat with them other than calling them.

Friends? My few close friends I have rather chat with Discord.

Unsolicited calls? So spam and scammers. People I often hang up on or don’t answer.

I rarely ever dial out to people. If I do, it is almost always to people I already know or would expect me to call them.

Why would I ever just unsolicited call somebody? I don’t work at a call center.

I would probably email a person I don’t know first to contact them. Maybe send a text if they show somewhere they are OK with this.

Most of the outbound calls I make are to customer service systems. So I can get them to shut up and pass me to a person.

I might call a business. But I like to look at information online. Also, from my time working at Walmart, I know personally how pointless it is to call a business to ask for availability.

But What About Other Communication Methods?

Here are some of the apps I use on my phone to communicate with people.

Discord: I can chat with Discord servers. I can message people directly. I also can make voice and video calls with other people. I often video chat with close friends.

Email: I rather email somebody than call them. But I like I mentioned earlier. I rarely send emails on my phone. I mostly read them.

Facebook Messenger: For the few odd family members that like to use it and nothing else.

In-Game Communication: Some mobile games let you talk to people.

Skype: Because the lady paying me to answer her survey questions only used Skype for some reason.

Social Media: Social media websites/apps often let you chat with other people. I talk with people on Reddit and Twitter somewhat often.

Texting: Sending texts is fun.

YouTube/Twitch: Maybe calling YouTube comments and Twitch stream chat communication is a bit of a stretch. But you are talking to other real people. At least, I think they are anyway.

Zoom: I needed this program once. Once.

Story Summary

  • I use my smartphone for its many other functions most days.
  • I rarely need to call people or have people I want to call.
  • I chat with other people via other means.
  • I send more texts and emails than phone calls.

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Eric Farmer

I love to read and write about technology. I sometimes write about other subjects.