By Jim Calloway
At the OBA Annual Meeting, during a discussion about smartphones, an attendee pulled out an old-style flip phone and smiled at us. This happens a lot, although not nearly with the frequency it did several years ago. Sometimes the lawyer is a bit sheepish about still having an old flip phone and other times they are quite proud of it, having avoided what they view as the additional complexity and expense of operating a smartphone.
I am not judging anyone for their phone. Even the most fervent users of smartphones would agree that they are a mixed blessing. Even carrying a flip phone still means that most serene weekend afternoon or private moment can be interrupted by a call. It is a part of life today. And flip phones do have the advantage of never having a reported episode of bursting into flame.
The idea of individuals carrying a device that is a phone and a powerful computing device connected to the internet is not going to go away. I used to do seminars about apps for lawyers’ mobile devices, but now it is easy to do a quick search for any function and find articles comparing and contrasting various mobile apps.
A challenging thing about technology, however, is knowing what you don’t know.
So let’s cover a few things lawyers can do with their smartphones today.