Getting an iPad, or not

I really enjoy reading Leo Babauta’s pieces about minimalism and productivity. He wrote a short post a while back that REALLY struck me, about why he WON’T be getting an iPad:

But I didn’t need an iPad last month or last year, and I will venture to guess (I could be wrong) that I’ll be just as happy, fit and productive without the iPad.

……..I’ve resisted buying an iPhone for several years because I don’t need one (despite their ultimate coolness), and the iPad is another way cool gadget I don’t need.

Wow. If it were only that simple.

At the end of 2009, I really really struggled with not upgrading my Telus cell phone to a new Android smartphone, which in the end, I didn’t, considering the cost and more importantly, that  I came to agree that my current professional, home and social lives wouldn’t be qualitatively improved because I had a cool new HTC gadget. But that decision took me 6 weeks of consideration and changing my mind and back and forth – it was that hard for me to “let go” of wanting the next cool thing. This is also a bug that I and millions of others have when it comes to Apple products. In fact I have an inner debate about once a week about purchasing an iPad.

It’s true that we don’t NEED a lot of the tech gadgets that we have purchased over the past 2 years, and the ones we have in our house serve our existing needs. As we are trying to make more conscious choices about living sustainably and having a smaller footprint, we really need to seriously consider the principle that we can be “just as happy, fit and productive without” ___________ , whatever the item may be.

(However, this doesn’t mean that we won’t, in fact, be acquiring any more Apple or other gadgets – but it means that I intend to try and be more sensible about it, try and stagger each product to the natural end of its lifecycle before I pick up another one.)


One thought on “Getting an iPad, or not

  1. I LOVE this post, because this is something I think about all the time. I work with a lot of people you might refer to as “tech geeks,” in the sense that they are forever trading in their current technology to get the newest, brightest, and shiniest toys on the market.

    (Example: Does one really need an E-Reader that holds 5,000 books? Doesn’t the original one, which holds 1,500, suffice? Are they really planning on reading them all again? Truth be told, if you upgrade your E-reader every two years, you probably won’t have time to fill it up, anyway . . .)

    And yet, I can see the allure in having all these gadgets, and I understand how, in some ways, they MIGHT make your life easier. (And if not easier, at least more fun . . . for a few months, anyway).

    I can understand it, even though I fall in entirely the opposite category. I am very frugal . . . OK . . . cheap. So, I’m your classic “late adopter” — the one that runs all her technology into the ground, and doesn’t upgrade, until the original product is marked down to about one-third of its price and as completely obsolete.

    Sure, I save money. But I think I also sacrifice a bit of efficiency, and important technological knowledge through my “frugality” and stubbornness. And as someone still in my 20’s, I’m probably a bit young to be so behind the times . . .

    So, I think you have the right idea. You’ve achieved a balance between efficiency and cost-effectiveness, technological savvy and realism, in terms of what’s necessary and what isn’t. I’m a bit envious. 🙂

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