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Taming the iWant

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I’m driving to the Apple Store today to have the battery in my phone repaired. Generally, I avoid going at all costs, because if Target and the mall are danger zones for my spending addiction, the Apple Store is a tornado in an erupting volcano, sprinkled with landmines and nuclear waste.

Some people scoff at my love of iDevices. They’re so overpriced. You’re paying the Apple tax. You’d be much happier with [insert non-Apple product here]. I can understand and appreciate the fact that not everyone wants iDevices. Not everyone is willing to pay higher prices or wait in lines or buy into the hype. And sometimes I wish I could be one of those cool people who can stand back and honestly say, “There’s no reason for me to buy any of those things.” But I’d be lying, and I’m a big fan of the truth.

I’ve been criticized before, both online and in real life, for daring to own expensive electronic devices when I’m in debt and/or don’t make a million dollars a year. But, believe it or not, I’ve never added to my debt with an Apple product. Every single one of them has been purchased with cash. And I don’t really care if people like it or not – I’d venture to say that most of us have purchased things that other people don’t like.

The good news is, there are very few iDevices that I don’t already own. But it doesn’t mean I’m immune to iWant. There are always upgrades and accessories. And I don’t know if you’ve ever been in an Apple store, but HOLY CRAP those places are amazing.

But I don’t need to spend money. I don’t need anything new. And I’m confident that I can walk out of there today with only my repaired phone. And it helps to know you guys will be ready to kick my butt if I don’t. ;)

About Andrea Whitmer

Andrea is a freelance web designer and single mom trying to maintain a sense of humor in an otherwise chaotic world. She blogs in hopes of helping others avoid the same mistakes she made in the past. Join in the discussion here on So Over This, or connect on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram, or Google Plus. You can also subscribe to new posts via RSS so you never miss out!

Comments

  1. I definitely know what you mean; I really want an iPad but I can't justify buying one right now. My iPhone is a 3G. It's 2 years old and dying for an upgrade.

    • If you can hold out for the next iPhone in late summer/early fall, I'd recommend it. But the 4S is a MAJOR improvement from the 3G. I kept my 3G forever, but the software updates were rendering it useless.

  2. Haha. I won't kick your butt if you buy something! It sounds like you're all prepped to go in there, do your business, and walk out. Heck, I walk in there almost every time I go past it in the mall (which isn't very often because I stay out of the mall), and I don't buy anything. I agree that the store is just flat out amazing. I don't think it will destroy anyone financially to buy a thing or two in there, After all, their products can help us with productivity and all sorts of other things in our personal and professional lives. If they can help us, and they don't put us into more debt or distract us too much from gaining traction, then I say what the heck. Enjoy life a little.

    • I agree with you, except for the "it won't destroy anyone financially to buy a thing or two in there" part. Because I know many people who would be destroyed financially if they dropped a few thousand dollars. But I try to plan for those purchases so I won't have that problem. It's so hard to walk out without buying something!

  3. Good luck, be strong! I have an iPhone 3GS and everyone I work with has upgraded to at least the 4 if not the 4S. However, I'd be charged through the nose for an upgrade with my current carrier and I have about a year left before I'm free of them forever, so I'm waiting to upgrade (mostly out of spite! I hate my cell carrier!). I have an iPad 2 and I also want to avoid seeing them in store because I know the green-eyed iMonster will be out in full force!

    • I think it's smart to wait so you can escape from what sounds like a crappy carrier. Plus the new phone will be out in a few months and you'll be glad you got the new one instead of the 4S! (Though I will say, I love my 4S to pieces.)

  4. SenseofCents says:

    I don't think there's anything wrong with buying "wants." I get criticized for going on vacations, but it's pretty much the only thing I spend my money on.

    • I think vacations are generally more accepted than buying "stuff." Anything that can be justified as an experience seems to pass scrutiny most of the time. I would love to take more vacations at some point in my life, but I'll probably have to stop buying Apple products first!

  5. Good luck in your personal toy store. Stay strong. That's like me walking into a half price books or a store that sells my calligraphy supplies.

  6. the only iThing I own is a first gen, ipod shuffle that I got refurbished 10yrs ago. You know my current dilemma. I'm really trying to not buy an iPad. But I am being fairly smart. I'm looking at first gen, refurbished/used iPads and not the newest one. If I could get one for about $200, I think I'd buy!
     

    • I wish I could be really responsible and tell you not to buy an iPad. But the truth is, I use mine so much I can't really tell someone they aren't useful. I write and read posts, respond to comments, use Twitter…. Basically I can do almost everything I do on my computer. Some of it is a little less convenient on a touchscreen, but it CAN be done. And I'd take a 10-hour battery over a laptop battery any day!

  7. Over Christmas, I just got my first iDevice and I absolutly love it.  I say continue on with what you are doing–you do amazing and you don't go into debt over them so why not? I've had people mention the fact that I'm saving for a wedding while still in debt but I just continue on with what I'm doing.  I'm still saving to get out of debt and I've limited my book buying (which is amazingly hard for me to do) so I think I'm doing okay.

    • I'm a firm believer that you can't completely stop living while you're in debt. You just can't. You end up miserable, and you're more likely to spend on impulse because you've deprived yourself for so long.

      If you wait to get married until you're out of debt, you could be a very old woman depending on how fast or slow your payoff is going! You only get married (hopefully) once, so I say save for it and tell the haters to find someone else to gripe about!

  8. DontDebt says:

    I've never totally understood the iCraze, but that's just me. I have a nice phone, but it's not an iAnything. My cellular provider isn't AT&T and doesn't offer those, so maybe that's part of my immunity. It wasn't available anyway. But I've seen people – one person I'm thinking of in particular – who want the latest, greatest, fastest, best technologies and she doesn't even *really* have the need for any of them. She works as a line worker in a factory, doesn't have a work email address, doesn't run a business on the side, doesn't even monitor her personal email. At. All. She only has an email address because it's required for some things and it came free through her internet service provider. It seems ridiculous to me that she would be so into technology. Maybe it has to do with the fact that I'm in front of a computer screen 7.5 hours a day at work. Actually, I have two screens – double the work, lol.
     
    But I digress. It seems like you have a plan, so stick to it. You'll be happy with yourself if you do. If you don't stick with your plan, well, you're human and get to choose things like that.

    • You're smart to avoid the iCraze. The products are like potato chips – you can't own just one. I used to laugh at people who bought all the Apple stuff, until I bought an iPhone.

  9. impulsesave says:

    You got this, girl! You can totally control yourself. Just remember that your friends at ImpulseSave are here to help, too :) They're shiny, and sleek, and simply – but be strong!

    • I made it! And don't think I didn't remember the money sitting in my ImpulseSave account when I was touching a MacBook Air. But that money is for something else so I tried to keep that in mind.

  10. NewlywedsBudget says:

    I want a new phone because mine sucks and i always have problems with it, but i'm waiting for the iphone 5 to come out. come on october!!

    • I really think the wait will be worth it. Of course rumors are always flying when it comes to iPhones, but the fact that the new iPad has LTE makes it pretty much a given that the new phone will have it as well.

  11. BruceBucks says:

    My wife got an iPhone and I decided to get an HTC android phone. I didn't give into iWant, but the fact of the matter is, I settled for inferior product. Sometimes it is better to fall into iWant.

    • That's a good point, and one that many people aren't willing to admit. I would pit my Apple products against ANY similar product from another manufacturer. Now that I have a Mac, the only time I spend working on computers is dealing with my son's PC. Once I'm able to switch him over, my entire house will function as one well-oiled, slightly cultlike machine.

  12. Budgetable says:

    Does this comment seem fuzzy? …. wouldn't if you had a fancy new iPad w/ retina… think about it.. 

    • You, sir, are an enabler. And I'm really glad I didn't get this comment until after I got home from the store.

      I really want to say that the new iPad's screen isn't that impressive, but compared to my 1st gen? *drool*

  13. hithatsmybike says:

    Agreed! I want an iPad so bad =( …. I just typed that on my MacBook Air. Maybe I need to get a grip, or maybe I just need to get a grip on an iPad.

  14. rhitter1994 says:

    I want an iPad so much, it hurts.  However, this is the year I will be getting on iPhone, but only the iPhone 4.  I really don't need some phone saying they found something for me when I can find it myself!

    • I have to admit, I really like Siri. But I also understand that not everyone needs it. I use it mostly when I get text messages when I'm driving. I can have Siri read it to me, then dictate a response without ever looking at the phone.

  15. Everyone values different things.  I think as long as those big purchases are planned for in advance, budgeted etc. – then why not? Enjoy!  we wanted an iPad for the past year, but made a decision to wait until the iPad3's came out… when prices would drop for the iPad 2… and when it did, we pounced on it.  Well worth the splurge… and we don't feel guilty one single bit, because we planned for it ahead of time.  Now we're enjoying our new iPad =)

    • Don't you love it? We got my mom the iPad 2 for Mother's Day last year, and she threw a fit because it was so expensive (plus she doesn't even know how to use a computer). Now she's a whiz at ordering online, using email, and even a little Facebooking. They pay for themselves very quickly, in my opinion!

  16. Hey, at least you know it's an iWant and not an iNeed, unlike the rest of the world :)

    • Very good point. Though it's easy to convince myself it's an iNeed when I'm standing in the store drooling. I behaved myself, though!

  17. debtblackhole says:

    I'm still eyeballing the MacBook Pro. I've avoided recent trips to the local mall because of the Apple Store there. Out of sight, out of mind…until your post, that is. Thanks a lot! ;)

    • I know the feeling. I want a Macbook Air SO BAD.. And the sad part is, I don't even really need one. I have an iMac AND and iPad. But I can't help thinking it would be really nice for those moments when I need to do something on the computer that can't be done on the iPad (or at least not easily) but don't want to sit at my desk to do it. Ah, the justifications….

  18. I like apple, I don't own any of their devices but I don't shoot them down either. They are a few things about them I don't like but I'm not here to bash them.

    The major reason I don't own any though is because they are way more than I need. I would love to get an imac or a macbook but I only want it to toy with. I'm hoping my gf P gets one in the near future. She does a lot of graphic design so she would really utilize it while I get to play with it.

  19. I would like the new iPhone and the new iPad. kthanxbye :)

  20. BrokeElizabeth says:

    I have an iPod 160GB classic right now, but when it dies I don't think I'll upgrade… I might even (gasp!) go back to a plain ol' mp3 player.

  21. I've thought that I didn't have a need for an iPad. But then my girlfriend bought one and surprisingly, I do have a need for it. It is so much easier and convenient to carry around…I love it! But you still need to be practical and save up if you can't afford it.

    • Agreed! I am in love with my iPad; I knew I'd use it, but I've still been surprised by how often I use it. When I read articles about people saying theirs gathers dust, I'm like, What's wrong with you?!?!?

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