Evolution of the Mobile Phone
Take a look at the many reincarnations of the mobile phone since the first mobile phone call made in 1973.
When you are doing one thing - talking on your phone, texting, whatever - you are automatically not doing something else. What is the greatest scarcity in the world today? Its not oil. Its time. Time is precious. Dont throw it away. Dr Martin Cooper
Quality is much better than quantity. One home run is much better than two doubles. Steve Jobs
The best way to enhance security is through facial recognition its going to be the standard very soon. Kesha Williams Senior Consultant, Solution Development, Chick-fil-A
ones, friends and colleagues even if they live in different countries. The speed and ease of transmitting messages gives the impression that the distance between people has narrowed and would no longer separate them. Besides conventional calls and SMS messages, social media has become the default choice millions use for their day-to-day communications. According to the global digital report published by We Are Social, more than three billion people around the world use social media each month and 9 in 10 of them do so via mobile devices. App Annie data shows that people spend seven times longer on mobile apps than on mobile web browsers and recent data ( January 2018) from Facebook revealed that 95.1% of its user base accessing the social media platform via mobile devices.
In recent years, video-based social media sites have become hugely popular especially among the below-thirty group likely due to how easy it is to take photographs and videos with mobile phones and share them. Instagram announced in June last year that it had one billion users worldwide, a 200-million increase from September 2017.  The app attributed much of its previous years growth to its stories feature introduced in August 2016. Stories mimics the feed in Snapchat, another popular photo and video app, and feeds users with every photo and video (up to 10 seconds) every account they follow posts within the past 24 hours. Because stories content will only be available for 24 hours from the time of posting, it encourages users to post more frequently and mindlessly. Another videosharing app, TikTok, boasts 500 million monthy active users around the globe and recorded one billion downloads (excluding Android downloads in China) according to Sensor Towers latest Store Intelligence estimates report.  Developed in China, the app for creating, sharing and viewing short videos has found large audiences worldwide:
According to the global digital report published by We Are Social, more than three billion people around the world use social media each month and 9 in 10 of them do so via mobile devices.
It gained 71.3 million new users worldwide in January 2019 alone (excluding Android users in China). In the same month, it was also the most-downloaded non-game app in the United States and the third most-downloaded non-game app across both Google Play and App Store.  Available in 75 languages and in 150 markets, the app is a classic example of a current social media platform that speaks a universal language and creates global communities.
Furthermore, texting has encouraged the development of a universal mobile language that transcends geographical and cultural boundaries. Acronymns and other forms of abbrieviations were invented to make messages short. A range of emojis, stickers and short animations (commonly known as GIFs) not only enrich communication by providing more ways of expression but also serve as pictorial messages that transcend cultural boundaries. While language may pose as a barrier to communication among people who do not speak the same language, any one of the emojis or stickers found in the messaging apps is very likely to hold the same meaning for them. Therefore, they promote greater understanding among people from different cultural backgrounds by facilitating communication. (see page 40)
Communication apps like Whatsapp, WeChat, Skype, Line and Telegram have provided universal platforms that enable people from different localities and cultural backgrounds to communicate. These apps are not only used for personal communication but are useful work tools as well. Through these apps, documents, screenshots, photographs and voice recordings can all be shared faster than you can say Can you send me an email?. In fact, many apps have been specially developed to enhance productivity and work processes. One such app, Asana, allows you to set deadlines; share notes; upload files; assign tasks; view and prioritise all your tasks and projects; monitor progress on the dashboard; and communicate with team members without the need to send a single email. Slack is another similar project management app that allows you to organise in-app conversations by topic, projects or other ways you need them to be organised. It also allows you to integrate tools you may already use (for example Google Drive, Dropbox, Asana, Twitter and Zendesk) into your workflow.
Mobile-friendly search engines and apps have also made accessing information very efficient. Rather than spend hours perusing books in a library to find data for a project, Internet searches would call up thousands of relevant information sources under a second. One can also stay abreast of current affairs with various news websites as well as dedicated news apps such as BBC News, AOL, Feedly, Flipboard and the popular AIpowered news aggregation platform Toutiao. When the need to take note of something you see online for future reference, notetaking apps like Evernote can be very useful. Besides using it as a notebook, Evernote allows you to save and manage pieces of information you retrieve from the web. Users can clip them, tag them and embed pictures, videos, audio and tables, making their digital notes easily searchable.
Undoubtedly, the mobiles widespread adoption also lies in its fundamental ability to enhance our experiences. With compact yet powerful cameras built into modern smartphones, we can capture memories at the touch of a button without the need for bulky equipment or another persons help. A range of built-in image enhancement tools and sharing functions allows us to edit and share what we have shot using the same  Instagram now has 1 billion users worldwide, The Verge (2018)  TikTok Revenue and Usage Statistics (2019), Business of Apps (2019)  TikTok Crosses 1-Billion Downloads Milestone on App Store, Google Play: Sensor Tower, Gadgets360 (2019)  TikTok Surpasses One Billion Installs on the App Store and Google Play, SensorTower (2019)
device. The process cant get any simpler. Our exercise sessions and commutes can now be accompanied by music, podcasts and the like with the mobile phones capacity to store and stream these media. We can watch football matches live even when we are a thousand miles away from where they are played and learn how to make that tasty dish better by watching step-by-step videos. (see page 32)
Despite the indisputable advantages that the modern mobile phone brings us, its usage has also come with a string of disadvantages. Chief of them all are those pegged to an over-reliance on the gadget. A 2017 study on 2000 Americans done by a Asurion, a company that provides mobile insurance and support, found that 60% of them experienced occasional stress when their phones are off or out of reach. It was also revealed that Americans checked their phones once every 12 minutes or some 80 times a day.
In March last year, 11 independent scientists peer-reviewed a landmark study and concluded that there is clear evidence that radiation from mobile phones causes a heart tissue cancer in rats that is too rare to be explained as a random occurrence. They also found some evidence of cancer in the brain and adrenal glands. Done by the National Toxicology Program (NTP) of the US Department of Health and Human Services, the study is among the largest conducted on mobile phone radiation. NTP scientists exposed thousands of rats and mice to doses of radiation equivalent to that an average mobile user would be exposed to in his lifetime.
Concerns over the effects of mobile phone radiation on human health are not a recent fixation. No government safety testing was done before mobile phones were released in the US, and customers and industry workers had been diagnosed with cancer. In 1993, a man sued NEC America company for causing his wife (who uses the brands phone) to have a lethal brain tumour, and that prompted a congressional subcommittee to order an investigation. It came in the form of industry-funded Wireless Technology Research project, whose budget of $28.5 million made it the best-funded investigation of mobile safety to date. Findings from the project, which comprises more than 50 original studies and additional reviews, suggest that mobile phones are
highly likely to be unsafe. Researchers found that the risk of rare neuroepithelial tumours outside the brain more than doubled among mobile phone users and phone radiation could definitely cause genetic damage. The World Health Organisation also classifies electromagnetic fields from mobile phones as possible carcinogens.
Blue light that mobile phones emit damages the retina and therefore causes macular degeneration. A study conducted on 409 Malaysians, of which 75.6% were between 21 and 25 years old, conculded that they were extremely dependent on their mobile phones. It also revealed that a quarter of them felt wrist and hand pain because of smartphone use.
Thanks to all sorts of apps, we can satisfy our food cravings, buy groceries for the week and be entertained without having to leave home. Because of our reliance on mobile phones, we may be losing the capacity to do things we used to be able to do without the help of mobile phones. While we used to remember phone numbers, events, tasks, routes and so on, we now rely on the phone to do them, and this raises concern over whether our mental capacities would be compromised in the long term. Many tasks that require us to interact face to face with others can now be done on the phone, effectively eliminating the need for face-to-face interaction. This may result in weakened social skills. The widespread use of mobile language has also weakened language abilities with the diminishing distinction between English and mobile language.
Researchers found that the risk of rare neuroepithelial tumours outside the brain more than doubled among mobile phone users and phone radiation could definitely cause genetic damage.
Because of the ease of mobile online shopping, especially encouraged by free shipping upon hitting minimum purchase amounts, people tend to overspend. Additionally, the ease of mobile online shopping generates large amounts of waste from packing and shipping, increasing our carbon footprint. The same goes for convenient ride hailing, which has definitely increased the number of trips made in private cars in cities they are available.
Being highly connected has its inherent problems. Cases of privacy and security breaches are not unheard of. All a hacker needs is your phone number to track you and steal your data. And because anyone can share information, chances of misinformation are high the large volume of information to process makes it hard to discern between rumour and fact. This is especially problematic during emergencies when having accurate information to act upon is critical. The fact that someone with a mobile phone is expected to be constantly contactable also becomes
a disadvantage when people are expected to work around the clock. Easily accessible online content has also radically changed the way people get information, pass time and interact with one another and correspondingly increased our need for engagement through multimedia, in particular video as evidenced by the success of apps and sites that churn out endless video feeds. A consequent decreased appetite for static content and possibly shortened attention pose definite challenges for groups like parents, educators, speakers, media companies and marketers who will then have to adopt the use of multimedia content in order to engage their respective audiences. (See pages 28-29, 84-87 and 88-93)
Without a doubt, mobile phones have afforded us many conveniences we cannot imagine doing without. At the same time, we need to be aware of the problems associated with its use and use it to our advantage. Anyone needs an app for tracking and controlling the amount of time you spend on social media and e-commerce sites? ag