During the Chinese New Year holidays, many writers have dwelled on the theme of returning to their hometown and compare the sights there with that of Beijing. The tech scene is no different; one of the more popular and most ridiculed topics was about tech insiders’ experiences at their hometown. One of the more readable articles in this genre was about the writer’s experience at a so-called fifth tier city.

The article pointed out several intereting trends. For residents of this fifth tier city, almost everyone choose an Android because it is much cheaper than an iPhone. For everyday use, the smartphone functions first and foremost as a game console and video and music player. Of course, people also uses their phones to communicate with each other and to surf the internet, but these uses are mostly secondary. For them, a smart phone is primarily used for entertainment and to kill time, one fragment at a time.

This article fascinated me because I also went back home to during the holiday season. Inspired by the article, I also noted several trends in how my friends use their smart phones as well as the similarities and differences bewteen residents in a fifth tier Chinese city and that of an West Coast suburb.

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Yang Wang

Yang is currently the brand and media director at Elitime Media & Consulting. He has published and translated seven books, and several of his works have been translated and published in areas such...