Whoever said the dog was man’s best friend hasn’t heard that these days we are totally besties with those plastic and steel things. Ask the next person, in the event of a fire who would he or she grab first, spouse or phone? The answer could be troubling. What’s the single biggest factor for short-term urban depression these days? The grave loss of a mobile phone (and contacts—“alas, forgot to backup”). If there ever was an all-consuming love affair in recent times, this is it. It’s like Chipko movement 2.0. Or is it? We wanted to know about your relationship with your phone. Is it deep, dark, complicated? Or light and bouncy?
For the 19th anniversary of Outlook and the mobile phone, we picked 19 successful personalities from 19 places they call home, and we rang some mobile users. A fashion designer from Sonepat, the town of gold-grabbing Yogeshwar Dutt, a fitness trainer from Satya Nadella’s Hyderabad (though he hasn’t heard of the tech superstar), a lecturer from Nobel winner Kailash Satyarthi’s Vidisha, and so on. They sent us their selfies and told us some fun stuff, from their worst lies on the phone to their ringtone and how the phone has changed the way they work. It tells us a little bit about the many parallel worlds we live in, drawn together by the collective buzz of the phone. Call coming!
(Interviews by Prachi Pinglay-Plumber in Mumbai, Dola Mitra in Calcutta, Sakshi Virmani in Delhi, Shreeradha Mishra in Bangalore, Minu Ittyipe in Kochi and Madhavi Tata in Hyderabad)