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Technology arrives slowly in the sticks

The iPhone line outside the Verizon store at Madison-Mayodan, 7:45 a.m.

I bought an iPhone 5 today. But there’s a story there.

For the past four years, I’ve used a cell phone that weighs 10 pounds. This is because, when I first came here to live in the woods, nothing else would work. A powerful phone with a real antenna was required to get a signal. At the time, Alltel was the best option in local cellular service. Two years ago, Verizon bought Alltel. Things have been slowly improving after a new Verizon tower came on line about three miles away. Then finally a fiber optic cable was brought in to that tower, and things got even better. Those of you who live in populated places have no idea what rural people go through to get decent cell phone service, not to mention broadband Internet.

I had no choice but to retire the 10-pound Motorola digital bag phone. Verizon sent me a letter saying that all the old Alltel devices would no longer be supported after the first of the year. The timing coincided nicely with the release of the iPhone 5. I was the second person in line this morning at the Verizon store at Madison-Mayodan. I had guessed that there would not be an insanely long line at a rural Verizon store, and I was right. The nice guys inside even opened half an hour early at 8 a.m., which was the official release time for the iPhone 5 on the East Coast.

Here at the abbey, my Verizon signal strength fluctuates from one to three bars. However, I’ll mainly use the iPhone when I’m out and about, so the middling signal I get at home is not a big deal.

The iPhone 5 is cute as a bug. Did you know that the release of the iPhone 5 will actually cause a noticeable boost in our slow economy? By some calculations, the billions of dollars generated by the iPhone will add a .33 point boost to this year’s GDP growth.

My awesome bag phone, now to be retired to the attic

One Comment

  1. Quetal wrote:

    Well, now you won’t have to carry your camera around either. I hear the camera is excellent on your new spanking iPhone! Congrats

    Saturday, September 22, 2012 at 11:03 pm | Permalink

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