Queens woman will ditch smartphone for 1 year to win $100,000 in Vitaminwater contest

NEW YORK -- How long could you live without your smartphone?

Elana Mugdan, 30, thinks she can live 365 days without hers, all part of the $100,000 Vitaminwater challenge.

The Little Neck Queens native beat out 104,000 other people for the chance to go for one solid year without using her smart phone, but is this millennial fantasy writer of a series about dragons up to the task?

“I want to focus on my writing,” Elana Mugdan, the challenger winner, told PIX11 News. “I want to have a real human interactions, not digital fake ones that are a poor substitution,” she added.

By the rules of this $100,000 challenge, Elana cannot use a smart phone or tablet, even someone else’s, but she can use laptops and desktop computers and she can use this flip phone where she’s allowed to text, if she could just figure out how.

“To write ‘hi’, you have the hit this key four times and pause and wait,” Mugdan said.

Elana’s going to have a monthly checkin with the judges and she has to pass a lie detector test to get that $100,000.

“I have big plans for the money,” Mugdan told PIX11 News. “ I’m a broke starving artist, writing a book series and going on a book tour,” she added.

Most New Yorkers have their heads buried in their devices as they walk on the city streets, but perhaps surprisingly many said they’d give up their smartphones, for the right price.

“Yes I could, for $100,000,” Christina Keller, walking in midtown with a friend, told PIX11 News.

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