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Friday, February 23, 2018
Article written by Dan Cavalli

Today's Mobile Phones: Our Portable Windows To The World

You bought it in case of emergencies, and to stay in touch with family and friends. So you’re probably surprised to find yourself using your mobile phone in ways you had never imagined.

You check your email, you text your friends, your phone reminds you of appointments, you might even use it’s modern GPS technology to figure out the fastest route to get to those appointments-- And it’s been so easy to figure it all out!

Seems like everyday you discover new ways your mobile phone keeps you connected to the important people in your life, and keeps you in the information flow. But just how much are these little portable devices capable of?

Snap and Share

Nobody expected this to happen. First, consumers embraced digital photography with eager enthusiasm, and bought up digital cameras like they were candy. But even more surprising, now most digital pictures are taken with mobile phones.

The resolution may be less-- They average about 1.3-megapixels. But you can instantly send them from your phone, through email or instant message to friends family, even clients. And many service providers provide subscribers with personal Web space photo albums, along with the software that enables you to post your pictures on them. Or, like any digital camera, you can upload photos to your computer, using the phone manufacturer’s photo software, and a basic USB cord or wireless Bluetooth connection.

Beyond Phone Calls

Those digital photos you snap are a great way for you and the people you care about to be a part of each other’s day-to-day lives. Similarly, text messaging (SMS) provides instant connection when your hectic schedule only allows time for a quick “Hi.”

Most service providers also offer add-ons to their basic subscription packages that allow users to instantly check and compose email, and do some basic Internet browsing. You can even set your phone to alert you when a new message arrives in your inbox.


For over a decade, we’ve expressed our personalities through the ringtones we pick. Today’s phones take this expression to a new level, with downloaded sound effects and samples from our favorite artists.

The major mobile service providers, even most of the phone manufacturers, offer large catalogs of song clips from every genre, excerpts from popular TV shows and movies, and quotes from beloved cartoon characters.

But that’s just where the fun begins. You’ll also find screen “wallpapers,” sports update subscriptions, and downloadable games, ranging from classic arcade-style, favorite casino games, and familiar titles, like Tiger Woods PGA Tour, and Madden NFL. These, too, are available from your service provider, easily searched from your onboard menus, and the extra fees are surprisingly low.

For music fans ringtones are likely not enough. Mobile phones with built-in MP3 players have hit the market, capable of playing both paid and subscription music files. And, just like stand-alone players, they offer multiple EQ preset options, and sophisticated Bluetooth technology, allowing fast music file downloading and wireless headphone connections.

Portable Office

Busy professionals and students may forget to carry their PDAs, and often don’t want to lug around an expensive laptop. But they never leave home without their phones.

Following the lead set by BlackBerry, HP iPaq, and Palm Treo, all the major phone manufacturers have introduced model lines that integrate PDA functions with mobile calling functions and Internet connection capabilities.

It’s called Smartphone technology, but think of it as a portable connection to your office. Smartphones offer the standard PDA features; Calendar, calculator, reminder alarms, voice recorder, and word processing software. Most also offer miniature QWERTY keyboard layouts-- The standard placement of keys that you find on computer keyboards or typewriters.

That means Smartphones are less streamlined, so they may not be the right choice for those who are unlikely to use these features. But many professionals have already embraced the convenience of integrating all these functions into a single unit.

With each generation of mobile phone technology, manufacturers have tailored their phones to meet our individual needs and lifestyles. And, despite their ever-increasing capabilities and complexity, the industry has focused on keeping them user-friendly. It’s easy to see why our mobile phones have not only become our favorite high-tech tool, but are constant companions as well.
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