It was just last week that I wrote the article, Somebody asked, “People still use Blackberry?” and got the best answer, in which I made

Femi Otedola uses a dumb phone. Because smartphones are for hustlers

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It was just last week that I wrote the article, Somebody asked, “People still use Blackberry?” and got the best answer, in which I made the following statement:

The truth is, there are men and women around the world doing fantastic things with their lives though they use a feature phone or a BlackBerry or a Windows Phone or whatever else. Their choice of mobile has not stopped them from making something outstanding of their lives.

My point was that the use of a certain type of phone is no indicator of how productive or achieving a person is. This morning, I read an Entrepreneur article titled Why Some Smart Business Moguls Still Use ‘Dumb Phones’, and it has some interesting, related info on the subject. For starters, it states that “a number of top executives and dealmakers are still clinging to ancient mobile phones.”

We see quite a bit of that here in Nigeria too. I know people with real wealth who still carry a legacy BlackBerry or some older Nokia phone. They are very productive people and have income that I am still dreaming of. The Entrepreneur article gives three reasons why some of these smart people still use dumb phones:

  1. older/dumb phones were often built to last and withstand damage, especially because there is no touchscreen to worry about
  2. older/dumb phones often have a long battery life
  3. being less connected lets users of dumb phones deal better with important things
  4. lastly, using older/dumb phones is a status symbol in certain quarters

The last point is a surprise to you? Here is how the article puts it:

And it turns out, an old “dumb phone” can actually serve as a status symbol. It signals to associates that you can’t be bothered to check email every 10 minutes. Other people actually like the retro aesthetics.

I tweeted about this and got the following response from my good man, @gbenro:

And another response:

Yes; there you have it. Smartphones are for hustlers – those still aspiring. Those who have arrived prefer the easy life without all the distractions and frenzy of an uber-connected life. *pours a glass of vodka*


  1. I am sure MOverick wrote this article with his tongue sticking out.

    And yes, that author of the Entrepreneur Magazine needs to change his diet. It’s not syncing properly with his metabolism.

    Wealth is not the same thing as productivity. In Nigeria of today, having stupid and serious money is mostly NOT about productivity or efficiency.

    The richest people around… in skewed economies .. are not necessarily the most efficient or productive.

    There are of course exceptions.

    I have met reasonably affluent people who are very inefficient in their business and personal life.. as a result of their low or no adoption of technology.

    Conversely, there are people with poverty of mind and body who are inline with the latest in cutting_edge technology.

    There is little correlation between having attained and maintained financial freedom, and your level of techno_involvement. they are two unrelated things

    So, the phone a very rich man uses has absolutely nothing to do with his level of wealth, and is of no consequence.

    you use tools to make money, the primary of which are your brain and wits.

    Now,Using high technology also requires some level of intelligence. You can be very rich without necessarily having conventional intelligence, but just native intelligence, depending on where you operate.

    Furthermore, if you have to be bothered with carrying phones or doing secretarial/ mundane things, you are not truly rich.

    You would have a battery of assistants to bother their heads about all those, while you focus on the hard work..thinking.

    Finally, most people who have achieved financial nirvana no longer feel a need to impress with material things.

    Ask Warren Buffet. Ask Nark Zuckerberg…

    If you still feel a need to impress by what you drive or the phone you use, you are either in showbiz, or you are just bluffing and have have not yet “arrived”…

  2. lol, (super) rich people do whatever they like. his phone choice(s) are idiosyncratic, it has nothing to do with efficiency. if he cared for a smartphone he’d have one. Bill Gates uses a smartphone, so does Warren Buffet, are there another set of rules for the super super rich? as for productivity, any billionaire that’s conducting his business on a smartphone is being silly

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