Are You A Voice Or Data Person? - InformationWeek

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Commentary
3/12/2009
02:05 PM
Ed Hansberry
Ed Hansberry
Commentary
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Are You A Voice Or Data Person?

Some people are voice centric and it just so happens that they also can get e-mails on their phone. Others are data centric. The primary reason they have a phone is that is just the device by which it's easiest to access data from the Internet. The fact that they can actually talk to someone with the device is just another feature. Which one are you?

Some people are voice centric and it just so happens that they also can get e-mails on their phone. Others are data centric. The primary reason they have a phone is that is just the device by which it's easiest to access data from the Internet. The fact that they can actually talk to someone with the device is just another feature. Which one are you?Jason Langridge had an odd glitch with his SIM card where voice was switched off but data flowed as expected. He really didn't mind as he could get the information he needed without the voice part of the phone working. Honestly, I'm not sure I'd notice for a while if my voice portion of the phone stopped working. Between SMS, Twitter, instant messaging, and e-mail, I get almost all of my communication done that way. Either that, or I'll just talk to someone face to face. For me to actually call someone on the phone, though, it has to be really important, because you run the risk of them not answering and now you have to leave a voice mail. They return the call and run the same risk. It is supremely inefficient. Voice is about handling it right now. Data allows you to work that communication into your work flow when you have a minute or two to process it without interrupting your current train of thought. Maybe it's just a side effect of my tendency to multitask, something more and more of us are inclined to do. I can juggle a number of things, but prefer to be able to set the priority myself. The phone call forces me to to put all of my attention on the call. That is certainly appropriate sometimes, but not all of the time, and likely not most of the time. Even at work when it is important enough to talk to someone on the phone, most of my co-workers and I have gotten in the habit of pinging each other via instant messaging to ensure the other person is at their desk and ready for a call, saving both parties wasted energy and making a good use of time. As for my cell phone, as I write this post, I honestly don't know how many minutes my plan has. It has been years since I signed up for it and I doubt I hit 10% of the minutes usage. I know I've updated my data plan many times and used to be able to tell you exactly how many MB I could use each month, or how many SMS messages I could send. Of course now, it's an all-you-can-eat plan on both counts. Even before I had a smartphone, I had an old Nokia 3650 with Bluetooth and I used it as an access point for my laptop and PDA. Other than having a cell phone for roadside emergencies, the modem feature was my primary reason for carrying it around. Jason asked the question at the end of his post -- "If you had to choose one, voice or data, which would you choose?" I think it is pretty obvious which one I would choose if forced to. How about you? Could you survive for a few days if your data plan went down, or would you rather have to run silent if your phone stopped making voice calls for a short while?

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