Lens Of The People by Treyvon Waddy

Good Afternoon, readers! Lens of The People is a column dedicated to the capture of the real-life scenarios and events of the local Houston area whilst also giving the thoughts and opinions of the Houston community itself its own voice to speak through.

One of the things that come to mind when thinking of the past decade are the advances in cell phones, more specifically the rise of smartphones and their incredible popularity. From iPhones to Androids, the reason for their huge success is a very straightforward one. Their versatility in the way they allow the user to perform several actions at once. From an objective standpoint, having a smartphone is essentially having a small computer, being able to send emails, text friends, and interacting with social media, all while talking on the phone. The smartphone is revolutionary in the way that it allows one to maximize their efficiency in a way that has never before been possible. But just as smartphones can a blessing, it can also be a curse, as there are many ways to get distracted with the very thing designed to maximize efficiency. With social media, and not to mention the plethora of gaming apps, it’s very easy for one’s phone to become a burden onto them. So the question this week was: If you didn’t have your phone, would you be more or less responsible and efficient overall?

In my opinion I would be more responsible with my time, but less efficient without a smartphone. Smartphones can be very distracting, but also very helpful. When I think about the amount of times during the day that I use my smartphone, I’m somewhat thankful for the ability to effectively communicate and carry a tiny computer in my pocket. I’ve recently gotten an Apple Watch, and it’s literally the most amazing thing ever! So yes, smartphones have helped and hindered me.” (Mattison Sims)


I feel like it honestly helps because it provides easy access to any questions I might have, and to be honest, I really prefer to take the easy way out when it comes to completing tasks. Especially school work. I wouldn’t really say that I have a dependence on it, but it’s definitely handy to have around. For me, I think that if I didn’t have a smartphone, I would get on just fine, but it really depends on the person and how they grew up in my opinion.” (Mika Glover)


I think I would definitely be less efficient because I use my phone for everything, I use it to set times for meetings, scheduling, homework, etcetera. It’s very integrated into my life, and if I didn’t have it, I wouldn’t be able to talk to the people that I talk to over Snapchat, Instagram, or GroupMe, which are primarily what I use to talk with people from work or school. So I would say that it’s very important.” (Kendall Hill)


I say I’d be a lot worse considering the times we’re in. Phones make it a lot easier to keep note of things, and really it depends on the person. But for me personally, I use my phone to keep myself organized so in that sense it would make me less efficient, but all in all I don’t think it would be that bad.” (Mikol Kindle Jr.)


Smartphones in a sense are just like sneakers for the American. Overpriced novelty items that don’t hold nearly as much value after their first use. But to answer your question, depending on how it’s used, a smartphone could might have a possibility of increasing productivity for some, but for me personally I know for a fact that I would be both be more responsible and much more efficient, not only in socializing with friends, but also work, school, and other daily tasks where most people like would spend the time they could be using to do that to instead look at their phones.” (Jacob Witherspoon)

Photographer’s Thoughts

While I like most other people with smartphones, have been on the very distracting side of it, getting lost in an endless sequence of videos or binge-watching Netflix series’, at the end of the day I can recognize that there has to be limits and recognize as well the vast amount that’s available to me and the potential work that I can do with just my phone that it balances out. That awareness of self is what I believe would keep me and others fairly evened out when it comes to efficiency and responsibility without a smartphone.

This was Lens of The People, a column dedicated to giving the Houston community a voice and a platform. Stay on the lookout for more, all made possible by The Forward Times!