Imagine for a second that someone took your smartphone away for a day… while you might think that it is no big deal for a second, it might be totally different after 5 minutes in practice, especially if your job demands contacting other people all the time. We are so closely connected to our smartphones that we no longer realize how dependent we are on them all the time. Although smartphones are definitely one of the most useful innovations of 21st century, it is already about much more than simply staying connected. Nowadays, people use smartphones for EVERYTHING, paying bills, topping up phones, checking email, buying tickets, booking appointments, banking, listening to music, taking pictures, playing, reading, getting news, basically EVERYTHING. But have you even thought how different your day could be if you left your smartphone at home for a day or even simply used it only for its original purpose – making a call?
No one can argue that owning a smartphone comes with lots and lot of advantages. Here are some of them:
- Always connected – through smartphone you can be on internet anytime and anywhere. This is a crucial point for those whose success is highly dependent on staying connected to their inbox and social media all the time. It is also pretty useful when you have to kill time and you do not have anything to do, like on those long metro rides every morning and evening to and from the work.
- All the apps – no day goes by without a new mobile app making the news. Every day people are able to take care of more and more stuff through their smartphones. From internet banking to ad creating, basically anything you used to do on your PC, can now be done on your mobile phone. This is truly awesome and convenient.
- Follow the trend – smartphones are probably the easiest way to keep up with all the innovations, news and trends that are going on around the world. Whether you keep an eye on online media portal, have a special app for news or simply scroll social media posts all day, there is no way getting around those news. Like it or not, you are going to have all the main information at the end of the day. This is especially useful for people, who hate watching daily news on TV.
- Educational source – if you like to learn extra skills in your free time, rather than spend it on playing games and scrolling through friends’ pics, then smartphones offer lots of great apps for self-development and education. There are lots of useful language learning apps that can really take your speaking skills to the next level.
- Distance is no longer a problem – it has never been easier to stay connected with all the friends and family around the world. With lots of options for video calls, it can feel like they never left the city.
- All in one – if years ago you had to carry a camera, iPod and mobile phone now it is all featured in one compact device.
There is always a BUT though… with many benefits come the disadvantages as well. Smartphones do make our lives much easier and comfortable, but you cannot run away from the fact that some people involuntarily spend most of their time looking at their phone screen, which cannot be good in any way.
Social activity = human interaction?
One of the most common topics of debate when it comes to overly active use of smartphones is whether it is deadly for human interaction or on the other hand enables them to stay socially active at all times. Through smartphones we can not only call our friends, but also text message them, imessage, email, facetime, skype; the list goes on and on. While it does provide us with many effective and cheap way to communicate with others 24/7, does it truly replace the real value of in-person interaction? Definitely, not. And do not forget all those depressing photos of parties and dinners, where everyone is on their phones instead of talking to each other.
Life runs by
Another scary thing about smartphones is that sometimes we get so involved and lost in the virtual world that we might not even notice something blowing up in front of us if it were not for the noise. In other words, people no longer observe the surroundings. Remember how you used to look around when you were on the bus and notice every new detail on your street; well, many of us would rather keep their eyes on the screen now than see what is new around. Basically, people no longer look around and see the beauty that is around.
No need to think
Another part of everyday life that has been affected by the use of smartphones is the way we think. If before you had trouble remembering something or a doubt about a fact, you would think logically, try to remember, ask friends and then come to a conclusion; you would let you brain do the job. However, now it all takes seconds; you just Google it and there you go, you have the answer to everything. There is no need to focus and think. Constant use of smartphones makes us and our brains much lazier.
What is the first thing everyone nowadays does in the morning? Reach for the smartphone and as the day goes on, it is all about the smartphones, at work, lunch, dinner, in transport, bathroom, gym, gatherings, bed… On average, we spend 4 hours using our phones every day and this does not even include the time spent actually making calls. More than 50% of this time is for entertainment.
There is no doubt that living without a smartphone in 21st century would be extremely hard and inconvenient, but it is crucial to remember that there are times when it is better to put the phone away and enjoy the life as it is.