Not just a pretty screen

Compiled by John Kang

The first iPhone was released on June 29, 2007, so we asked our readers for the oddest use they have found for their smartphone. Here are our favourite answers…

Compiled by John Kang |

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A useful marker

I'm not a bookworm, so when I'm reading a book, I usually don't have a bookmark with me. And being the OCD person I am, I hate folding the corners of my book. This is when my smartphone comes in handy. I'll take my phone and slide it in the place where I stopped.

Ruby Chung, 17, International Christian School

Disguise level: 100

Like most phones nowadays, my phone is on the big side - big enough to cover my face! So when I see someone I don't want to talk to on the street, whether it's an aunt or someone I owe money to, I can use it to hide myself. It's like a mini-wall. No you can't see me, no you don't know me.

Melory So, 15, Renaissance College

A cat … or a car …?

When I don't have my glasses on, I just turn on the camera and use the zoom function to see faraway objects, like binoculars!

Smriti Roy, 16, Island School

The end of #foreveralone

What's the point of having a non-existent person who opens your email when you ask it to open photos? Exactly. But hey, sometimes, when you're alone, standing by the side of the road waiting for someone, Siri is better than no one. I still like you, Siri … ish.

Anushka Purohit, 15, Renaissance College

Move over, iTunes

My friend was lacking a capo - the clamp used on guitars to change the pitch - one day, so he got me to put his iPhone against his guitar to serve as a mock-capo.

Cynthia Huang, 16, Chinese International School

Not just a dead weight

When wind blows through your room, how do you keep the tonnes of paper on your desk in place? A paper weight of course! My iPhone is always nearby, and it's just heavy enough to hold everything together.

Tinaz Mirza, 17, South Island School

Lazy... Or ingenious?

I have this app called Is it dark outside? on my phone. Its function is in the name - the app answers the question on whether it's dark outside or not. It's probably for people who are too lazy to even look outside the window (for example, me).

Christy Cheung, 16, St Paul's Co-educational College

Any excuse to get into selfie mode

I think one of the weirdest uses for a smartphone is probably as a mirror. We all have times where we're supposed to look our best, but often there isn't enough time to run to the washroom and fix our hair and make-up. That's when smartphones come in handy. If the lighting is right, I dim the screen so that I can see my reflection, and quickly fix a thing or too. But if the lighting is too bright, or black-and-white reflections just aren't clear enough, selfie mode becomes my saviour.

Joy Pamnani, 16, PLK Ngan Po Ling College

An ear for the right pitch

Instead of using a traditional tuning fork to keep my violin perfectly tuned, I always use my smartphone. It's much more convenient and accurate than the conventional one, and most importantly, it came with the smartphone!

Charlotte Chan, 17, Carmel Secondary School

Digital heating

I sometimes use my smartphone as a hand warmer. Without noticing it, I always hold onto my phone, and my hand warms up pretty fast when it's cold outside.

Haram Yoon, 14, YMCA of Hong Kong Christian College