LAS VEGAS—The 2009 Consumer Electronics Show, an extravaganza of the hottest new gadgets hitting the market, went largely unnoticed by attendee Lance Middleton, who used the event as a four-day, one-man tent revival about the virtues of his phone.
“The Android is the most revolutionary thing since DOS,” Middleton told anyone who would listen and a few guys he cornered in the men’s room. “Ten years from now, nobody’s going to remember the iPhone or that skinny dead guy.”
Middleton, 29, purchased the T-Mobile G1, the first phone to use Android operating system, as a Christmas gift to himself. After memorizing the manual, sales brochure and list of possible side effects, he’s been going on and on about it ever since.’s new
At CES, Middleton wandered past various displays of stereos, personal computers, and Blu-ray players. However, his activity inevitably devolved into an excuse to talk about his phone. “Like, he’d take a picture of a home theater system with his phone, then ask the person next to him, ‘You seen one of these yet?’” said Chet Forster, Middleton’s buddy and CES hotel roommate. “Next thing this poor guy knows, Lance is all ‘open source’ this and ‘democratic apps market’ that.” Forster added he planned to buy an iPhone as soon as he got his next paycheck, then registering Lance’s Gmail address as a “satisfied iPhone customer who wants every marketing email and new product update sends out.”
During the convention, Middleton was variously spotted booing the new Palm Pre, and obsessively using his phone’s GPS/Google Maps feature for directions to destinations mere blocks away. “I mean, it’s Vegas,” said CES staffer Milton Borges. “If you’re looking for Circus Circus, it’s the place that looks like a giant goddamn circus tent.”
Middleton also live-blogged the event, a task which sometimes took more than an hour per post on his phone’s tiny keyboard. “In five years, the Android will replace the personal computer,” Middleton wrote in an entry to FreeLance. “Forget One Laptop per Child. We’re raising a generation of .” Middleton’s posts suggested he did not find this thought frightening, nor a possible sign of the apocalypse.
As the convention drew to a close, Middleton was using his phone to find a tattoo parlor in order to get a tattoo of the Android’s green robot mascot taking a bite out of the Apple logo. However, for all the Android’s features, Middleton was unable to program the number of any single women into his phone.