How did we ever survive?

We have visitors from overseas this month who are traveling around central Canada this week. Of course, they each own mobile phones from their home country but we all know how painful roaming fees can be.

So, just as I own a half dozen SIM cards for my trips, they are now the proud owners of a Canadian pre-paid SIM.

But that isn’t the point of today’s story.

They forgot to take their charger with them for this week’s side trip. As a result, we had trouble reaching them yesterday; battery life was being conserved for emergency purposes. After last night’s consultation, we determined that the phone uses the standard micro-USB so it shouldn’t be much effort to borrow a plug for a top-up.

As we discussed airport pick-up arrangements and what we do if the phone runs out of power, it made us reflect on what we did “in the olden days”. Of course we all survived, but it is a lot easier with the variety of portable communications devices that nearly all of us carry.

Which raises the question being asked by CTIA today: what is the right age for children to get their first cell phone? The various stores and carriers have launched Back-to-School specials and product introductions. My kids had phones in high school, but I think in today’s world, I would want them to have phones even earlier. I have family overseas who equipped their kids with a phone in primary school.

I’d be interested in your comments and discussion.

1 thought on “How did we ever survive?”

  1. I love your article,and I do remember a time when I had no cell phone. As to how old should a child be before they have their own cell phones, that depends on the families budget, the needs of the child and the rules that the families have. In my case my 4 children were strictly reared on the basis, you get what you work for. They were not paid pocket money to work on chores, such as cleaning their bedrooms, tidying up and generally being helpful from an early age. As my children are all adults now, the youngest being 23, if I could go back in time I would not purchase a cell phone for my child to use. I still believe that when in school no cell phones should be used and if my children were not old enough to travel to school alone myself or another adult would accompany them. In the olden days you speak of we had bad people roaming around,offering children candy etc, we taught our children how to be streetwise. These days my feelings are that children are given an easy opt out of normal life. IF the cell phones were only to be used in an emergency and the children knew the value of paying, at least partial payment out of their pocket money to use the phones this would not be so bad. But, from my viewpoint I see lots of spoilt children, quite young in age, demanding phones and texting their friends, running up huge bills and not appreciating how hard their parents work to pay the bills. I may not be popular for my viewpoint but my children definitely know how to work hard for what they want and are equipped for the real world when parents and care givers are no longer around.

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