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Need a solution similar to a pager service

Being on-call for IT solutions is a tough enough job, but when you depend on a smartphone to stay connected for those 24/7 urgent issues makes it even harder.  In the old days, a pager was a stable, simple almost 100% fool-proof solution to receiving notitication of urgency.  Smartphones are the simple replacement, but iPhones for instance fail to keep reminding you of missed calls until you ack it (pagers would keep beeping until they died).  Also, keeping a smartphone on me at all times creates a bad habit of checking email, facebook, news, etc.  This is unhealthy and in my opnion an epidemic problem. Finally, the problem with seperating urgent from non-urgent calls is tough with the phone.  At least with a pager, you could give the pager number out as an urgent need and after-hours contact number.  If the pager went off, then you knew it was urgent.

So I sit back and think about needing to keep my smartphone and use it during the day and for normal mobile use, but I need to be able to disconnect from it at night, weekends, holidays, etc, BUT i have to be available 24/7 with reliable communciation.  Also, I need the ability to tell the difference between urgent and non-urgent calls (or texts) at all times.

Oh how I miss the pager days, and I know those still exists, but they are going away too fast.  It seems that mobile providers would provide a text only device that had it's own number and would act just like a pager and would also accept voicemail.  Does that exist?
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EirmanChief Operations ManagerCommented:
My situation is somewhat similar. However, I'm not tied to my smartphone and I frequently turn it off at weekends or leave in the car for hours at a time.

I have a very small dedicated bog standard phone that I use solely for emergency contact (voice message or text)
(If I needed emergency emails I would an email to text service)

Remember the sequence ....

First we had brick sized mobile phones
Then we had tiny / light mobile phones that you did not notice in your pocket (get one of these)
Now they are growing into bricks again !!
murrycAuthor Commented:
Good feedback Eirman!

Anyone else have other solutions they are using?  
Mike LazarusAct! Evangelist - CRM ConsultantCommented:
This is one of the functions I miss in going from a Blackberry to an iPhone...

The Blackberry has Profiles ... so you could set it to day profile and get a normal notification or a night Profile and only get notified from specific contacts. The notification LED can also keep flashing till you respond

As per "Notifications and Ringtones" in: http://rdsrc.us/oEp8Zk
murrycAuthor Commented:
I tested having a smaller flip phone this weekend and it just was too much to carry and was too easy to mute and the battery just ran down over a few days.  I am going to get a pager today and give that a try for a month.  Thanks for the feedback!
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