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If you can give up your smartphone for a week, this company will pay you $1,000

Published Jun 6th, 2019 10:05PM EDT
Smartphone Addiction
Image: Mint Images/Shutterstock

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There’s a good chance you’re reading these words right now on a smartphone. And just as good of a chance, in fact, that you’ve been essentially either tethered to your phone all day or it’s at least been within arm’s reach when you’re not using it. Permanent connectivity is the price of modern convenience these days, and most of us live the majority of our personal and professional lives by being largely reliant on these increasingly pricey handsets.

Which, from time to time, also begs the question: With the proper incentive, do you think you could give up your phone for an extended period of time? What if someone was willing to give you $1,000 to ditch your smartphone and go back to a good old flip phone, and you only had to last a week?

In this case, Internet service provider Frontier Communications is the “someone” in question, and it’s just launched its “Flip Phone Challenge” apparently right in time for the 30th anniversary of the first Motorola phone with a clamshell design, the MicroTAC, that was created in 1989. Frontier is especially looking for smartphone addicts and people with a strong social media presence and/or who are willing to vlog about their experience.

Never fear, though: Frontier is also throwing in a “survival kit” to sweeten the offer.

What’s in the kit, you ask? Why, a physical map, of course, to make up for the lack of GPS in your phone. Also, they’re throwing in a pocket phonebook, so you can write down numbers you’ll need for the week, plus a notepad and pen as well as a few 90s-era CDs to help ease the pain of a Spotify withdrawal.

“If you’re chosen, you’ll be responsible for using a flip phone in place of your smartphone for seven full days (that’s 168 hours!), and we want you to log your experience,” the company explains. “We’ll have you track (don’t worry, your info stays safe with us!) how long it takes you to do basic tasks such as texting and checking email, how many times you wish you could Google something, how many hours you slept” and much more.

Follow this link to the entry form, all ye hardy souls who want to apply.

Andy Meek Trending News Editor

Andy Meek is a reporter based in Memphis who has covered media, entertainment, and culture for over 20 years. His work has appeared in outlets including The Guardian, Forbes, and The Financial Times, and he’s written for BGR since 2015. Andy's coverage includes technology and entertainment, and he has a particular interest in all things streaming.

Over the years, he’s interviewed legendary figures in entertainment and tech that range from Stan Lee to John McAfee, Peter Thiel, and Reed Hastings.

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