Sometimes, I wish I could uninstall the ‘Phone’ app from my iPhone. It’s amazing to be able to access email and websites from anywhere, without needing to rely on the availability of WiFi. It’s less amazing for people to be able to initiate immediate verbal communication with me at any time of day or night.
Between working as a TA and taking courses, I think it’s pretty difficult for doctoral students in the first couple of years to do much substantive reading and thinking about their thesis topic. In order to counter that, I am trying to do what I can to reduce the number of apparently urgent items popping up in my attention stream.
I wish the iPhone was a bit more granular in terms of which services you can turn off. It’s great that the iPhone has an ‘airplane mode‘ that kills both access to the cellular network and access to WiFi. It’s also great that you can turn on airplane mode with WiFi enabled (for internet access with no phone calls or text messages). I wish you could allow the phone to use the cellular network for email and web browsing but disable it for text messages and phone calls.