We did not have a home telephone at all until I was about 9 years old. If I wanted to communicate with people, I wrote them a letter!

I clearly remember when we moved house, and the new place had a phone line. I was taught by my parents that when I answered the telephone to clearly say:

  • my name
  • our phone number
  • "how can I help you?"
I was one of three boys that used to run to the sound of the phone...who is it and what do they want!

Things gradually changed.

The spinning numbers were replaced by push buttons.

The phone directory that I used to try and rip up with my bare hands when the new one arrived was replaced by the internet.

What had once been hugely thrilling can now feel intrusive. I got an answerphone so that we did not have to take calls during family mealtimes...but it also took calls at other times, and just created a list of people for me to phone back.

I was given a mobile phone when I was almost 30 years old.

The brick that I carried round could call anyone anywhere, and if I was bored I could even play ‘snake’ on it.


I was no longer tied to only talking to people when at home.

I didn't have to wait for the phone when someone else was using it.

The call was always for me!

This week I finally got rid of my landline.

Nobody ever seemed to call (apart from cold calls seeing if I'd been miss-sold PPI) and nobody in the house ever bothered to answer it.

But more importantly...

My smartphone can now do everything!

  • I no longer use a separate camera - I can take pictures with my phone
  • I can spend and move my money so do not need to visit the bank
  • I can have spoken directions via Google Maps, so no longer need a London A-Z
  • I have not needed to buy my kids a set of encyclopedias, as they can look up information with a swipe of a finger

For many, ‘change is considered loss’, but as 2016 comes to an end and 2017 beckons, I want to look forward optimistically.

I wonder what new things will come and how life will change into the future...and I wonder what you will do differently in 2017!