This is a guest post by James Pelton, the CEO and Developer of Mobile Text Alerts SaaS.
People nowadays cannot be separated from their cell phones.
If you are having a nice meal in a restaurant and stop to have a glance around the room, you will find someone at every other table in a deep trance, staring at their screen.
No wonder! That’s what I say. Look at all the amazing things that a modern smartphone can do.
Smartphones are a modern miracle of ingenuity and innovation but this has come at the cost of other gadgets.
The smartphone has created an ecosystem that allows new technologies to develop and prosper. Specifically, the rise of apps to make our lives easier and what is being coined as “the sharing economy”, giving life to incredible multi-billion dollar apps like Uber and Airbnb.
This ecosystem has also given life to a plethora of dating apps, like Tinder, that have taken the world by storm and changed the entire dynamic of dating.
However, like in all ecosystems, while some things flourish, others falter.
While the smartphone has been such a bastion for technological advancement, it has killed off a number of competing gadgets along the way.
In fact, you could say that cell phones are serial killers.
Here are the gadgets and tools they have killed:
1. GPS and Sat Nav.
Most people would argue that the GPS system itself was the death of the paper map. But thanks to smartphones apps such as Google Maps, standalone GPS Systems have become obsolete.
Google Maps now has 1 billion active monthly users and companies such as TomTom have shown massive drops in revenue.
2. Landline Phone.
One phone in the house to be shared amongst the entire family. Those were the days!
How did we cope? There were plenty of fights over whose turn it was to use the phone.
There were the terrifying moments calling your girlfriend’s house and hoping her dad won’t answer the phone. And I’m sure equally terrifying moments for dads when young men are calling to speak to their daughters.
This, however, is a thing of the past. 41% of households no longer have a landline phone thanks to the prevalence of the smartphone, meaning it is simply no longer useful.
3. MP3 Player.
While this incredible device revolutionized the music industry and allowed music fans (which is all of us really) to store thousands of songs in their pocket, the mp3 player quickly became obsolete as a stand alone product.
As soon as the stat emerged showing that the smartphone has replaced the newspaper as the choice of men on the toilet, you knew that newspapers were in trouble.
That has proven to be the case with newspapers shutting down over the country and papers, such as the Independent in the UK, becoming purely digital.
The Real Downside of Smartphones
Like we mentioned previously, smartphones are often called the death of conversation or being accused of killing of a number of gadgets. However, there is a real negative when it comes to cell phones.
They emit electromagnetic radiation that discourages bees from returning to their hive and effectively have the same end result as microwaving birds’ eggs.
These two creatures are essential parts of the (real) ecosystem. This is something we need to be aware of to make sure that our bees especially don’t die out.
Smartphones are Wonderful
Having said that, smartphones are still a wonderful piece of engineering.
It is simply an astonishing feat to be able to condense all of theses features, tools and gadgets down into a single device that slips into your pocket.
Not only that, but the smartphone actually saves an inordinate amount of money for users by doing this. By squeezing so many devices into one, it eliminates the need for additional purchases.
Here’s an infographic presenting even more data on the topic: