The Hired Hand – Not just another blah-blah-blog

April 12, 2014

My smartphone was lost… and I was lost without it

Filed under: Culture,Email marketing — Darcy Grabenstein @ 10:44 am
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iPhoneby Darcy Grabenstein

The other night, I thought I lost my smartphone at the gym.

Sheer panic set in. For those of you who are parents, you know the feeling. I’m not equating losing a phone with losing a child by any means, but the initial symptoms are similar. A sickness grabs the pit of your stomach.

I didn’t realize how much I rely on my smartphone until I thought it was missing. I felt almost as if I had lost a part of me. In addition to the traditional phone contacts, I’ve uploaded playlists for teaching Zumba. I have all my information loaded in a fitness app that I use every day. I have message threads from my family that I’ve saved for sentimental reasons. I’ve got my email accounts synced. I have dozens of apps downloaded for convenience.

All that could’ve been gone — poof! — in a flash.

And then there’s the issue of unauthorized access to my data, although my phone locks after a few minutes of idleness.

I’m not alone in my dependency on my smartphone. We’re so tethered to our mobile devices, that it’s hard to imagine life without them.

The statistics speak for themselves. According to Pew Internet Project research on mobile technology, as of January 2014:

  • 90% of American adults had a cell phone
  • 58% of American adults had a smartphone
  • 32% of American adults owned an e-reader
  • 42% of American adults owned a tablet computer

Marketers can’t ignore the fact that more and more consumers are accessing their information on mobile devices. Emails and websites must be optimized for mobile. Whether it’s adaptive or responsive design, it’s responsible design. It will become the norm, not the exception.

BTW, I found my smartphone hiding in the cup holder of the elliptical machine, exactly where I’d left it.

Now if only my glasses had a homing device….

March 27, 2012

App-lause, app-lause!

Filed under: Branding,Public Relations,Social Media,Technology — The Hired Hand @ 2:11 am
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plug'd logoOriginally posted March 9, 2012

Last night, I had a close-up view of a live concert. – even though our seats were toward the back of the venue – thanks to technology.

At the start of the concert, Idan Raichel (of the Idan Raichel Project) invited audience members with iPhones to download the free app Plug’d. He said it would give us a whole new way of experiencing a concert.

Just as viewers of the Super Bowl relied on their “second screen” to make the event more interactive and personal, I was more than a concert-goer. I was a participant.

With Plug’d, you can view a live feed, complete with information like singer/musician bios and song lyrics. The latter proved quite helpful, since most songs were in Hebrew. You also can upload photos that you take via the app, and post comments on the live feed. And you can view a list of others using the app.

Idan himself took photos of band members from his vantage point on stage and posted them. In the ultimate role reversal, he also took photos of the audience and posted them, too. He also posted comments, like “Nice pic, Darcy!” (Well, I doubt he’d say, “Lousy pic, Darcy!”)

The perfect ending to the virtual portion of the event was when my fiancé opened a lighter app on his smartphone. No fire hazards or security risks allowed in the concert hall? No problem. Simply wave your virtual lighter over your head.

And if you’re wondering whether the group will play just one more song for the crowd, just check the live feed. When I saw “Good night, Philadelphia” posted by the host, I knew the house lights would come on at the end of the number.

My thoughts on the whole Plug’d experience? While I’ll admit it was distracting at times, it definitely was something to text home about.

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