The role of Smartphones in our life
Smartphones are a mobile device that has an integrated computer that helps the operating system stay up to date with the latest upgrades and features. In society today, a cellular device is a necessity. “The number of smartphone users worldwide today surpass three billion and is forecast to further grow by several hundred million in the next few years” (Holst, 2019). By the looks of the forecasted numbers, there will be many more users to impact the world in various ways.
The creation of mobile devices has impacted the world so much that it feels unnatural to not have a smartphone on a person at all times. Individuals use smartphones to engage with friends and family on social media platforms. The platforms allow people from around the world to stay in contact with distant friends and family by posts made on the account. Depending on what type of device a person has determines if one can FaceTime with each other or not. For example, android users can FaceTime with each other but cannot FaceTime someone using an Apple phone. Another perk of having a smartphone is health and wellness tracking. There are wearable devices that connect to a person’s phone to help with the tracking process to make it more convenient. Even though I do not have a wearable device, I still use my smartphone to track the number of steps I have gotten for the day. I recently had to lower my step goal because I was not achieving as many steps as I had wanted to. The downfall of individuals with smartphones is that people use their devices while driving. “Driving while texting causes 1.6 million car accidents in the US every year” (Djurkovic, 2019). I only use my phone if someone calls me through the Bluetooth of my car. Lastly, a negative about smartphones is the way a person reads a message. Interpreting messages is a game-changer that can lead to arguments. A few months ago, my friend and I got into a disagreement because of the tone of my message. The message was read wrong, and she later apologized for getting angry with me. We laugh about it now, but we make sure to call each other regularly to avoid misinterpretations. Smartphones are impactful for individuals, but when those individuals form a group, a smartphone device becomes that much more beneficial.
Smartphones have a way of bringing the unlikely of individuals together to create a group that makes a difference in the world. Technology and social media have made it easy to search for anything on the internet. For example, there was an ad on Facebook that advertised a guy looking for a place to take his Basset Hound. The person found a private group on Facebook that was catered only to Basset Hounds, which was meeting up later that day on the beach. Facebook’s commercial demonstrates that it only takes a few common interest to bring people together for a cause. Group chats have become increasingly popular with smartphones. Users can now create a group for family or friends that allows a person to send a message to everyone at once. Apple products have the feature to react to messages. I like this feature because it gives a quick response from the recipient to the sender acknowledging that the text was seen. Conversely, groups can also be used to divide up a society. Cell phones are used at traffic stops for the black minority. Black minorities feel obligated to record when they get pulled over, so there will be evidence of everything that is going on. “A study of nearly 100 million traffic stops from around the country has concluded that, on average, black drivers are 20% more likely to get pulled over than white drivers” (Willingham, 2019). Black people are not a fan of the police because of the recordings that are brought into the light after something happens. I know that all cops are not bad and are just trying to do their job. However, until the average number of people pulled over are even people will continue to use their cellular devices to record. Smartphone technology has drastically changed the way groups have interacted with society.
Society has the power to influence people into buying the latest phone. Smartphones have impacted society when it comes to businesses. Employees can now do work outside of the office because cellular devices are so powerful that they can do the work of a laptop on a smaller screen. The society has benefited in education because of the development of applications that can be downloaded onto a phone. Educational applications provide an alternative way to provide services to help children learn wherever they are, as long as there is a smartphone or tablet. Unfortunately, society finds it acceptable to give children smartphones that prohibit them from being kids that enjoy outdoor activities. “Teens reported more than seven hours on their phone each day, while “tweens” (ages 8-12) spent close to five hours a day (Fox, 2019). Children that have phones at a young age will feel a need to have their phone on them 24/7 and might become addicted to it. Deloitte’s mobile consumer study reported, “60% of U.S consumers 18-34 admit to smartphone overuse – the highest level of any age group” (Spangler, 2018). I can attest that I am addicted to my phone because I feel like I am missing out on the latest trends/post if I put my phone down. Finally, when a person decides to get a smartphone, they are agreeing to not having any privacy. Not only will a phone company have a user’s information, but whoever monitors the different applications on the phone. No matter what technological device a person has, people are constantly watching. Since technology is being monitored, it should be easy to spot ethical issues with smartphones.
Ethical issues have always been a problem in the world, but smartphones have enhanced the way it is being done. Bullying should never be tolerated anywhere, but it is worse now with smartphones. Smartphones, along with the internet, can lead to cyberbullying because it is convenient to make a post on a social media platform without waiting to go home to a laptop. Once a post is made on the internet, it is viewable for everybody to see and make comments on it. Another ethical objection to smartphones is the ability to cheat in school. Nowadays, students are getting creative in the ways they hide their phone in class without the teacher knowing. Students might even use the excuse of their smartphone as a way to get out of studying. The mindset would be why study when you can cheat. I am starting to wonder if children are becoming too dependent on technology instead of taking the time to learn the material. There are websites, like Chegg or Cousehero, that can have a problem solved in an instant without the hard work of a human brain. Unfortunately, the issues do not scare consumers into thinking that their actions could cause them consequences in the end.
Overall, smartphones have advantages and disadvantages when it comes to individuals, groups, and society. Smartphones make it easy to track one’s health and wellness. Groups help bring people together because of the common interest users share. Companies use smartphones because of the flexibility it makes an employee to do work when they are not in the office. Ethical issues will always be a problem, but how we deal with it will be the difference-maker in how we better our world.
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