LIFE B.C. - BEFORE CELLPHONES...
What would you do if you worked for a wireless phone service company and they told you that you had been selected to participate in a unique experiment where you wouldn't have access to your cell phone, Blackberry or Treo for an entire week? Well that's exactly what Sprint is doing this week with several employees who are sharing brutally honest stories of how they're barely coping without access to their trusty mobile phones or PDA's.
Sprint's Speed Blogger experiment features hilarious and harrowing stories of employees who seem to be suffering from withdrawal because they couldn't check the weather, visit their favorite websites from the palm of their hand or access their voicemail instantly. While I felt bad for one dad who couldn't alert his daughter he was going to be late to pick her up from camp, I began to realize that this experiment is actually a really great way to show how much we all rely on technology and how Sprint's line of wireless products can make our lives a whole lot easier. According to Roni Singleton, a spokesperson for Sprint, she says the company thought it would be a "fun experiment" for their employees that would give them "a whole new appreciation for their cell phone. As much as we love it, we take it for granted," she adds.
On the flip side, just like a summer vacation, this self imposed one week detox from cell phone use may keep this distracted generation of Sprint bloggers more in tune with their families and perhaps make them appreciate life B.C. (before cellphones). It also gives them the chance to take a break from their 24 hour work-day for a change - note to self - stop checking to see if the BlackBerry light is flashing at 3am.
The blogger experiment also kicks off a brand new online contest where everyday consumers can share their personal stories about how they're using their Sprint phone in an innovative way. To register, you'll need to subscribe to Sprint or own a Sprint product - which pretty much stinks for me because my classic BlackBerry Meltdown tale totally could have taken the grand prize.
In this interactive online contest, 53 million Sprint customers will get the opportunity to answer this question for a chance to win the latest phones, cash prizes and more. Whether it’s teaching your grandfather how to text message so he can keep in touch while you’re away at school, navigating with a mobile GPS application in an unfamiliar city on your way to a last-minute client meeting, or diverting a business catastrophe while away from the office using Sprint Mobile Broadband service. Each one of these scenarios underscores the importance of wireless technology for Americans.
Dubbed “SprintSpeed Stories™,” the competition seeks customers to submit their own interesting and unique stories on how Sprint’s wireless technology has enhanced their lives for a chance to win one of several prize packages and the $5,000 grand prize. SprintSpeed Stories follows on the heels of the 2006 Sprint Productivity Survey which found that 84 percent of the American wireless subscribers polled say technology is vital to their productivity and helps them get the most of their lives in and out of work. Most notably, the survey revealed that mobile phones are being used to text message, send and receive e-mail, get the news, access the Wireless Web, listen to music, watch live TV and on-demand video and other crucial applications for the wireless lifestyle. Life goes by fast, and SprintSpeed puts business and consumers in control so they can live life at their speed.
Customers can visit http://www.sprintspeedstories.com/ to enter the contest and post their stories between now and Oct. 26. Once on the site, they simply choose a category, enter their stories and then enhance the stories with photos or video if they choose. SprintSpeed Stories submissions will be posted online for the public to view and vote. The Top 10 favorites in each category as determined by the public will be turned over to a panel of expert judges, to be announced at a later date. The judges will then determine the winners for each of eight categories as well as a grand prize winner based on the submission’s rating, the uniqueness/originality of use of a Sprint product or service, the depth/quality of the story being told and the creative use of video or images to support the story.
The SprintSpeed Stories competition categories are:
· MOBILE U - How students are using wireless in school
· MOMS 2.0 - Moms communicating on-the-go
· FAMILY UNITS - How the wireless family stays in touch
· 1st RESPONSE - How wireless helps you help others
· WIRED-LESS BIZ - Getting the job done better with wireless tools
· SO GLOBAL - How you keep your roots planted without wires
· PIX & FLIX - Unique camera phone stories
· WALKIE–TALKIE - Share your chirp story
To read the stories of the Sprint bloggers who are about to enter day two of their cell phone deprived week, then Click Here. And to enter into the Sprint Speed Story contest, then click here now and share your tale or vote on your favorite.