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What does your phone say about you?

The touch screen age.

I have recently been immersed in the whole frenzy of giving life meaning of leaving indelible marks on myspace here before i leave and not getting attached while at it.

It hasn’t been easy, and the road ahead doesn’t look less bumpy or cloudy. But you see, sometimes just carrying on, is a superhuman achievement.

Carrying on..

Probably the way Graham Bell left us with the telephone that has since then evolved into a device that is shaping our lives in ways we would never have imagined.

Last year, one of my lecturers’ raised a very contentious issue in class. He was going on about body image and the impression you make on people. He went further on to say he had recently been in an interviewer panel for a job and had denied one of the interviewees a job despite his remarkable credentials, professionalism levels and his performance at the interview. Why? He had dreadlocks, and those do not portray a good image for the institution. He did not know why this man had chosen to grow locks or the story behind his hair. But those dreadlocks were not getting that job.

Well, i am not paranoid, but considering the global debates that the headscarf has since sparked, and with one on, i find an incessant urge to raise my hand. Luckily, my shyness gathers enough strength and courage this time.

“er..Sir, making presumptions on what sort of a person i am before you even speak to me is very unfair, I think. So what happens when i walk into a room dressed the way i am?”

“You will be judged for that. I’m sorry, that’s just how it is.”

You’ve got to commend him for his honesty!

Though to some extent, i agree with him, that it is a great human weakness, and somewhat inevitable but in this time and age, we are judged by things that may be a part of us, but do not define us in anyway. Now, in addition to the shape of your eyebrows, lengths of your skirts and the state of your hair, your mobile phone is the new basis of forming presumptions about you. If you were not aware, people are making judgements by the condition, type and the model of the device you’re walking around with.

Here’s my take of judgements:

  1. The missing limb

We all know that one person whose phone is always in their hands like an extra limb they suddenly discovered they’ve been missing all along. It’s not difficult to tell what they are up to. The meal they just had will be loading on Instagram in a few, and the conversation they are having is probably trending on twitter. Hashtag, hyperbole. Snapping those selfies, to Whatsapp snippets of texts, their faces are almost always glued to their screens. Of what good are they, you ask? Surprisingly these people may make for excellent mates and superb social media gurus.

  1. But first, let me take a selfie.

These are the people whose favourite pastime includes mastering the perfect pose for total #selfie domination and then analysing their favourite picks with friends before uploading them. They are also commonly known for telling the weather by judging if its optimum room for a selfie.

  1. Shakespeare / Shakespearettes

Any writer will confess that the best ideas can crop up in the most weird of places that you least expect. People who have different writing platform apps or when the phone’s memo is ranging with notes in the hundreds, that right there, is someone who has learnt to breathe with words. Awkward chronicles of Matatu travels to the man seated next to the in the bus with a pink shirt and a cologne to die for; to the brown eyes of that little girl who tagged you along Tom Mboya Street, ‘saidia, saidia’, they all need to be let out of the mind and inscribed someplace safely for the next piece.

  1. The Gamer

Gone are the days when a phone’s primary use was making calls. Now, consumers buy their phones judging by the phone’s capability and the gaming experience derived from it.

  1. Workaholic

For these people, losing a phone does not just mean losing their 1000+ photos in the gallery, but their whole lives are disoriented for a week or so before they come to. Meetings are scheduled here. Emails are sent. Important documents and security credentials are saved here. The stock market is closely monitored here as well.  There’s a whole ton of people whose lives are obliviously intertwined into one man’s phone and if that’s not power, i don’t know what is.


Smartphones were in the past considered a luxury, but is now more than ever becoming more of a basic need, especially with upcoming mobile companies producing high-end devices with superior specifications at low-range prices. Infinix, for example. Users are entitled to enjoying infinite possibilities with their phones.

I would love to end this here, but i find it hard to do so without mentioning the rifts that these devices are creating amidst us as it connects us to the world. Because now, where voices are only read and laughter is not being heard, i await the day where our screens will touch us back and make us human again.


This is an entry for the #infinixrisingstar competition that i really need to win, with your help. So please please, share this as widely as you can and share with me what you think, and your share of judgement on what your phone says about you. Thank you 🙂


18 Responses
  • Balqisa
    July 7, 2015

    Really amazing writing 🙂 🙂 In Shaa Allah you will win,

    July 7, 2015

    This is amazing

  • Najma Ali
    July 7, 2015

    Lovely article

    • Najma Ali
      July 7, 2015

      My phone says am a busy person because most of the time its either reading texts or books got online

  • Farhiya Osman
    July 7, 2015

    Awesome writing Latifa! ?

  • Aisha al mafazy
    July 7, 2015

    Good job!

  • Sixth-grouper
    July 7, 2015

    There’s a sixth phone person and I’m happily within that group! Haven’t thought of a clever name to give them yet… but they only use phones when there’s no other way to communicate. And even then grudgingly. More on us soon!

  • Salma adam
    July 7, 2015

    It is great article so lovely

  • Hamza adam
    July 7, 2015


  • Yaye Ali
    July 7, 2015

    mashaAllah this is awesome!! keep it up ???

  • Hellen
    July 7, 2015

    It’s so funny how I fall into 2 categories ?

  • Swabra
    July 7, 2015

    Wow. I can so relate with the missing limb. There’s this mysterious concept called the “ghost appendages”…. its said if someone has had a limb removed, they can still feel pain in the non existent limb… like a phantom limb… I swear sometimes when I forget my phone home, I hear illusions of something vibrating. Or a WhatsApp whistling echoing in my head… lol

  • Joseph Kiragu
    July 7, 2015

    Nice turn to the phone classification.

    This is my say. The age of the touch screen is here and it’s not going anytime soon. Actually it’s evolving.
    Now someone like me who is very very poor at mobile phone communication are constantly fighting with the rest who are already in deep due to merely not replying messages , calls etc. I am not saying i am not a touch screen user because we all are but my phone usage is low. In time I will also become glued to the screen. The effect of the majority , whether I like it or not will take effect in time.

  • Joseph Kiragu
    July 7, 2015

    Since this holiday I fall under number 4.?
    And flipboard?

  • Hamza Badawy
    July 7, 2015

    Outstanding piece! An excellent argument you made and defended it very well. Hopefully you can win some hearts and minds.

  • Boojie Blue
    July 10, 2015

    My phone is about a year old… its screen is doubly cracked and its phone cover is falling off.. its been forgotten on the bathroom counter a couple of times, under the pillows, once in lab and more recently at an airport in China…what my phone says about me? # unconditional love like a boss 🙂

  • Rowland Mtetezi
    September 19, 2015

    Amazing reading, I like the narrative

    • Latifa Mbarak
      September 23, 2015

      Thank you Rowland 🙂

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