DEAR READERS: WE INTERRUPT OUR USUAL FORMAT TO BRING YOU THIS EMERGENCY MESSAGE!
Last week the Federal Government did an Emergency Test sending a push notification to the nation’s cell phones. The message was the butt of jokes, but at the core is a recognition of how our communication systems have changed.
If you can’t remember when the last major earthquake struck or a devastating hurricane made landfall keep in mind one thing. The majority of households have now disconnected their landline phone and depend exclusively on smartphones.
It’s time to prep your twenty-first century disaster kit.
Second, as you get prepare, think about storing an auxilary power source or two, like an extra smartphone battery and a solar charger. Redundancy can mean resilience during a disaster, so it’s a good idea to do this for each family member’s phone.
DEAR MS. SMARTPHONE: WHAT IS YOUR OPINION ABOUT USING THE VOICE COMMANDS ON THE SMARTPHONE(LIKE SIRI)INSTEAD OF THE KEYBOARD? I HAVE A FRIEND WHO USES THE VOICE COMMANDS ALL THE TIME AND I FIND THIS UNUSUAL. Fran, Albany
Dear Fran: This is one of those questions that deserves an up or down vote from fellow readers. There are situations where hands-free helps: for example, if you are in the car alone or helping older people navigate a rideshare app.
DEAR MS. SMARTPHONE: MY EX IN-LAWS DECIDED TO GET MY 13 YEARS OLD DAUGHTER THE NEWEST PHONE FOR HER BIRTHDAY. MY IN-LAWS ARE WELL OFF AND DID NOT CONSULT ME. MY PROBLEM IS THE COST OF THE MONTHLY PLAN. I AM A DIVORCED MOM AND I STRUGGLE TO MAKE ENDS MEET. I DON’T WANT TO DISAPPOINT MY DAUGHTER OR MY IN-LAWS. Cindy, LaBrea
Dear Cindy: It’s too late, but your in-laws should have consulted you since as a parent, you are the grown-up when it comes to both money and screen time. But, back to the finances: you could ask your 13 year-old help out financially Continue reading “Dear Smartphone: Teen Phone Costs Mom”