Phones have certainly progressed over the years. In less than two decades, we went from basic mobile phones which did not boast much functionality other than calling, texting and being indestructible, to pocket-powerhouses which essentially turned into a pocket computer that are nowhere near as indestructible. But you know how it is, you have to take the good with the bad. Regardless, the progress in the field of mobile phones is undeniable to say the least, and more and more functionality, which then in turn making its way onto the smartphone, raises our expectations of what a phone should be able, or not be able to do. Let’s look at some of the functionality which we fully expect phones to do in this day and age, which would were not very plausible mere years ago.
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In the year 1999, the most you could expect from your phone in the entertainment department was a game of Snake, or maybe a funny text message from a friend. Now one of the very primary functions of a mobile phone is being a portable media hub. Playing music and podcasts, either from memory or streaming them from the internet, displaying pictures and playing videos is just the start. People now want their phones to also act as fully wireless internet hubs, and internet browsers. Social media is not going to browse itself after all, and even if you are one of the few people who still does not use any sort social media platforms such as facebook or twitter, chances are you browse something on the internet regardless. Functions which were reserved for computers only a few years ago have now turned into staple functionality for just about any mobile phone on the market. As well as all the internet functionality, gaming has been taking the casual mobile market by storm. Of course, gaming on phones is nothing new, it has been around since the aforementioned good ol’ days of Snake, but only recently are we finally seeing some games with a bit more depth to them than the average match-three puzzle game. More high-profile titles are slowly making their way onto the consoles, and if you are not taking advantage of the situation to play some quality games on your phone on the tube or bus, then you are missing out. Even Nintendo’s beloved mascot, the mustachioed Mario himself, who does not usually dare leave his creator’s consoles, has set up a holiday home on the App Store and Android marketplace in the form of Super Mario Run. If you are looking for something more than a platformer than you can always go ahead and be the hero in FFXV: A New Empire , to test your strategic skills, and get immersed in a fantastical world full of memorable characters and gameplay a plenty.
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While the overall durability of phones might have suffered, and iPhones probably do not survive even a fiftieth of the falls that a Nokia 3310 could take back in the day, they are technically much more equipped for various scenarios. Many smartphones coming out now are automatically waterproof, or at the very least water-resistant. Now whether this will help your phone’s lifespan during your in-the-shower texting sessions remains to be seen, but just being able to take your phone out in the rain and pick up a phone call guilt-free is a rewarding enough feeling on its own. Phones are capable of many more useful things nowadays, which a lot of is just taken for granted in this day and age. With features such as a camera, a map, a calendar, a personal planner, an alarm clock, a notebook, a text editor, email inbox, a weather station, a web browser, a non-T9 keyboard and even a tool for video calling, having a phone around is more handy than ever before. And those are just some of the basic functions, which are seen throughout smartphones nowadays. If you want to be truly impressed by the versatility and usefulness of a phone, start going through the App Store or Android marketplace, and you will soon realise that you can find a program for just about any situation. Need a personal trainer? You can get an app for that on your phone! Need to find out where your friends are but feel like you’ve been messaging them a bit too much? Use the Find My Friends app to get in get an idea of where your friends are instead without seeming too needy! Honestly, the possibilities are endless and considering that mobile phones have established themselves as one of the leading giants in the tech industry, it is only going to get better from now on.