Dec 5th, 2007
Almost one year ago, Steve Jobs announced that Apple would release a phone in 2007. I was excited about it. I’d been planning to buy an iPod Video, so I could show off my little family movies. Now I could get a device that could not only show movies, but also make phone calls and manage my calendar.
What I didn’t realize is that it would be the Ultimate Tool in the Aunt Toolkit.
Why Every Aunt Should Have the iPhone
I downloaded three episodes of Avatar: The Last Earthbender. The kids love this Nickleodeon show, and so do the grown-ups. It took me an episode or two to warm up to Avatar; the animation is pretty basic and on the surface, it seems kinda hokey. But stay with it: it’s actually pretty sophisticated–and funny. (I want my own ten-ton flying bison… Appa rocks!)
I bought the episodes on iTunes for me: I missed some shows and wanted to catch up. But luckily, I kept them on the iPhone for our family trip to the Virgin Islands. Long flights, missed connections, befuddled children. The death of the pacifier. Before they got too sad (or hysterical), I’d say, “How about an episode of Avatar?” Worked like a charm.
I know. The iPhone is a $600 gadget. (At least it was for me; now the price is down to $399.) Some may think: “You’d let a 7-year-old hold your $600 gadget?” Here’s the thing. The iPhone is surprisingly sturdy. It is difficult to scratch. It can be dropped from a low height. I got a great case for it that doubles as a little stand, perfect for airplane tray tables.
One night, while trying to encourage them into bed, I said, “If you get your teeth brushed and pajamas on, I’ll show you my photos from Crater Lake.” Instant cooperation. If you want to know how easy the iPhone interface is, Jack-Jack instantly figured out how to flip between photos. Of course, he was almost 3. A baby can navigate through iPhone photos as you can see on YouTube.
The iPhone has a speaker. Last night, giving Jack-Jack a bath, I could play a Dan Zanes tune to mollify him after getting shampoo in his eyes.
Naturally, he asked: “Can I hold it?” I do let the kids hold the iPhone, as I said above. But absolutely not in the bathtub!
There is a surprising amount of kid entertainment value in the Weather widget. Violet and Dash take turns looking up the weather in cities around the world. Dash was overheard recently asking someone else if their phone could tell them the weather in other cities. “My aunt has an iPhone and we can do that.” (Yes! Racking up the cool aunt points!)
You can take photos with any camera, but with an iPhone, you can email them on the spot. To the other aunts, for example.
7) Stock quotations
Just kidding. At least for now…