If you are a follower of the technology press as I am, you have to know that it seems like the only news happening in the world today is the introduction of the new IPhone by Apple. Folks have been lining up to get the new faster, 3G based phone, seeing it as the holy grail of cell phones. Sites like Engadget, Techcrunch, and Lifehacker have devoted countless words to describing the phone, and the new applications store that goes with it. One site even published a post as to how the IPhone could lead to more sexual encounters!
I confess that I haven’t jumped on the IPhone bandwagon. Yes, it is an interesting piece of technology, a cool platform that combines many important pieces of technology into a single box. However, given the cost, both in hardware and more importantly in the ongoing service, I can’t include it in my arsenal of tools.
“Wait a minute,” some are saying. “Isn’t this new generation of phone only $199?”
Sort of . . . if you hold your tongue the right way and the stars line up just so. The new 3G IPhone is $199 IF you are establishing the normal two year contract with ATT or are eligible for a phone upgrade if you are already an ATT customer. Folks who already are ATT customers have to pay a premium to move to the IPhone (something around $600) and analysis of the new pricing plan for service actually shows that even folks who purchase the $199 phone will end up paying more in the long run than first generation IPhone users.
The IPhone is an interesting device, and I would be less than truthful if I didn’t say that it would be cool to have one. But those of us in ministry have to balance the need for staying in touch with the reality that we are rarely paid Silicon Valley salaries, and so we need the best bang for our buck.
All of this is a setup to ask a question to those of you who have made the jump. How has the IPhone enhanced your ministry? Why do you think it is worth the expense to use this piece of technology?