According to a recent post on Spend Matters, BYODD (Bring Your Own Damaged Device) is Now the Norm, and the doctor has to agree. Not only are mobile devices ubiquitous in today’s workplace and home-life, but so are damaged ones. With essentially one in two mobile devices in use being damaged in some way, this means that at least one in two employees are using a damaged mobile device.
According to the author, the solution is to follow the advice in the referenced 2014 ZAGG Device Damage Study. Specifically, if companies are encouraging employees to bring their own devices to work, then those companies should be buying screen protectors, cases, and other damage defense products for their employees to make sure that these employees not only have damage free products to work on but to represent the company.
That is sound advice, and a precaution that should be taken, but that’s not the solution. That’s a fix. The solution to the problem is to address the root cause, and the cause is the proliferation of devices that are, simply put, way too brittle. While the doctor is not suggesting that we all need to be carrying around military-grade tech that can withstand blows, high-impact falls, and desert terrain, we should not be carrying around phones that bend in our pockets.
In other words, the real problem is the proliferation of devices that are being made flimsier and flimsier in a ridiculous effort to make a device that is not only lighter than the predecessor, but, as far as the doctor can tell, lighter than (compressed) air. And while 23.6 pounds (which was the weight of the first portable computer) is a bit heavy for a laptop, we can easily lug around a laptop that weighs 10 pounds considering we used to carry around textbooks that weighed 5 to 7 pounds each. We don’t need a 3 pound laptop (which is the rounded weight of a Macbook air), especially when a gust of wind can shred it! The same goes for phones. We used to lug around cell phones that weighed almost 2 pounds. We can certainly handle a pound if that’s what it takes to make it resilient and reliable. At 4 ounces, it can blow away with the wind!
So just like we need to avoid developers who insist on putting look before feel and functionality, we need to avoid manufacturers who focus more on making devices featherweight then on making devices resilient and support those manufacturers who take a more balanced approach to device production. When the money stops rolling in, this will quickly convince all manufacturers to kick their obsession with making featherweight devices and get back to reality.