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March 11, 2013

Are Smartphones Good for Society? ~ Kristina Jackson

Photo: Mil8, Flickr Creative Commons

There has never been a century where people have relied as much on their laptops, tablets or mobile phones as today.

How often do you leave your house without your phone? How often do you go to bed without first checking your messages?

Mobile phones have increased our society’s dependency on technology. But this dependency might not necessarily be negative. Maybe it’s healthy to have such a strong relationship with a device?

You’re Never Bored.

People who use Droid cell phones never have to feel bored. Smartphones offer numerous opportunities for entertainment, such as apps, group games, videos, movies, music and many other activities that keep mobile phone users entertained.

Some people argue that boredom creates character, but it also creates problems.

You misbehave when you get bored. You turn into a distraction yourself, which then distracts others. People are still bored when they enter dreaded dead zones. The rest of the time, they’re doing all kinds of things: surfing the Internet, reading books or talking to their friends.

Isn’t this time better spent?

It’s Easy to Stay in Touch with Friends.

Do you talk to your friends a lot with your phone? This is the example used by those who say that smart phones are ruining society by deeply affecting the way people interact with each other. They rely not on phone calls, but on text messages, Facebook and Twitter. Is that really so bad, though? Odds are you now talk to people you wouldn’t have reconnected with otherwise. You’re more in touch with your extended family, high school friends and people you knew years ago. Does it matter that you send texts or comment on statuses to stay in touch?

You’re Always Connected.

With mobile coverage expanding every day, dead zones have mostly disappeared. As a result, mobile users are constantly connected with the world around them. They can easily Google from anywhere, access games and movies no matter where they are and reach out to friends and family regardless of location. While you might see a person on a phone and think they’re being rude or obsessive, realize that they might be talking to their mother, sending someone a gift or playing a game with their child.

You Have an App for That.

There are apps for everything. As a result, people do their banking from their phones, they’re making purchases, sending gifts and taking pictures. They watch movies and television shows even if there isn’t a TV within miles. They read books as well, which causes some ire among bookworms. But these things are positives. Reading an eBook is better for the environment and shopping or banking from a phone saves time better spent with loved ones.

Everyone has an opinion on mobile devices and what they’re doing for our society.

In terms of saving time and resources, keeping people connected and providing constant, enlightening entertainment, I believe they’re improving the way we interact with each other.

 

Kristina Jackson is a freelance writer in technology and design. When she’s not writing, you can usually find her hanging out with her puppy, Louie while taking cooking classes.

 

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Asst. Ed: Amy Cushing
Ed: Brianna Bemel

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