The weather outside is frightful, but our tech is so delightful
26th Dec 2013 | 10:05
Tech killing Xmas? You're talking humbug
Right now I'm sat working on a laptop, my father-in-law is looking back through the cricket highlights on the Sky Sports App, my wife is playing some game involving jellies on an iPad mini and my mother-in-law is checking Facebook on the desktop.
Since the dog got us up at 7 we've discussed what Apple is offering up for its usual 12 Days of Freebies iOS tradition (I'd check back tomorrow unless you're a Justin Timberlake fan) and how good the Amazon Kindle sale is.
We've had countless survey releases from various companies telling us how techtastic we will all be this time of year, but the proof of the Christmas pudding is in the tasting - and I reckon we can all officially call ourselves techies.
Face time and Facetime
For every person bemoaning the loss of family time, another is finding ways that technology can make Christmas even better. My wife's best friend is in Canada for Christmas, and rather than a forlorn card she got to Facetime instead.
Because all this tech has been around for a while now and all the evidence is that Santa still comes, families still get on and argue in exactly the same percentage of old, televisions still gets watched together (if not necessarily live) and there's still a place for the post Christmas dinner boardgame, I think it's time to retire the hoary old 'tech kills family Christmas' cliche once and for all.
The fears that we'll all spend the entire festive time glued to our tech have been assuaged for most level headed people by the realisation that, yes we'll spend a fair bit of time checking our phones and tablets, but that there's no reason that this spells the death of sociability.
We might be a bit more inclined to check the spurious Christmas Cracker facts on Wikipedia rather than blithely repeat them for the next 12 months, and we might well be more inclined to time-shift the Christmas specials, because we seem to have got to grips with this technology lark.
It used to be just the kids who spent Christmas demanding time on the new games machine, but these days we can all crack out the old guitar peripheral, dusty old microphone or just get our groove on in front of our swanky new Kinect or Eye.
Just a few years ago there were arguments breaking out across the globe as to who got to watch what in the post-Christmas meal slump, but with the arrival of time-shift telly, DVRs and on-demand, as well being able to catch-up on your tablet or phone, we're all a bit more relaxed about whether it's Dr Who or the Queen's speech.
All-in-all, chestnuts are still roasting on an open fire, Jack Frost may well still be nipping at our collective nose, but it's tablets and phones, our TVs, consoles and laptops providing the warm glow at Christmas - and I, for one, am quite happy with that.
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