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Smartphones - The Swiss Army Knife of the Tech Era

Dec 08, 2011

Isn’t it a wonder how technology can make our life easier by providing us with things that we didn’t imagine possible? From the 1970s, the birth of the first mobile phones, to the 1990s, where the miniaturization of mobile phones finally happened, we always thought that these mobile phones are only restricted to just calling and receiving calls. Then, the technological geniuses of Silicon Valley fused cameras, alarm clocks, flashlights, portable gaming consoles, organizers and the mobile phone into the modern Swiss army knife: the smartphone.


Smartphones - Revolutionizing the way we live

Indeed, smartphones are revolutionary – in one fell swoop, smartphones entered as strong competitors in the camera industry, the portable gaming industry and even the analog organizers’ market as this modern Swiss army knife quietly invades every aspect of our lives.

Now, many of us can’t live without the smartphone – we use it to check our e-mails, check our schedule, burn commute time by immersing ourselves in its games… there’re an endless list of functions and roles these mobile phones play in our lives. Here, we bring to you 6 tricks that’ll make your life easier – see if you’re already using your smartphone in this manner!

1.       Using the smartphone's screen light as a portable flashlight – Do you remember your friend’s facing lighted up by his or her smartphone as your friend switches the smartphone’s switch on?. Well, if it’s bright enough to illuminate your friend’s face in darkness, it’s bright enough to be used as a flashlight! Switch on your smartphone’s screen by simply pressing the “unlock” button for your smartphone, and use it to light the way ahead of you! There are also flashlight apps for almost all smartphones that make your screen as bright as possible.

2.       Voice activated commands – Many smartphones now comes with voice recognition software – that’s right, you can command your smartphone to do a wide variety of tasks just by speaking to it! You can send text messages without typing, call your friend by telling your smartphone your friend’s name and even switch it off with one single word! Useful when you’re driving or are otherwise unable to hold your smartphone with your hands, this voice recognition capability is definitely one of the “wow” factors of today’s smartphones.

3.       Bluetooth - the forgotten technological marvel – Smartphones are all capable of Bluetooth – the wonderful technology that allows the wireless transfer of data in short distances. Using this capability, you can connect your smartphone to a Bluetooth headset or to your laptop via Bluetooth. There are even keyboards that allow you to connect via Bluetooth to your smartphones! The impact of this is that there’s no longer a need for you to untangle those annoying wires that comes with your headsets or smartphone-compatible keyboards – no risks of the wires snapping within the insulator, because there are none in the first place!

4.       Your very own minimap – Remember the days where you’ll constantly look at your minimap as you navigate the world of your favorite MMORPG? Well, smartphones has brought the concept of a “minimap” into reality – through the use of maps! Your smartphone will come with an internal compass in addition to a live-updating minimap, which is capable of telling you where you are, and the direction you are facing! The downside: no more excuses for running late, because you’ll never be lost again.

5.       It's also a remote control! -  Many smartphones today are also capable of functioning as a remote control for numerous entertainment devices like a home theater PC running on the popular VLC media player. Although this technology is not compatible with older electronics, the technology is growing in popularity. Right now, you should be able to download an app for the use of smartphones as remote controls for specific electronics.

6.       Mobile connectivity, and how it organizes your life – Or rather, smartphones arguably IS your life now. With mobile connectivity and dozens of apps that makes sure you are connected to all your other friends via Twitter and Facebook, you’ll never be far from a friend’s status update or your family member’s tweets about the latest movies. Along with this comes Facebook’s integration with your smartphone’s calendar – you’ll never forget anyone’s birthday now, because Facebook has marked every date on your calendar the birthdays of all your loved ones.

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Disclosure: Compensation was provided by US Cellular via Glam Media.  The opinions expressed herein are those of the author and are not indicative of the opinions or positions of U.S. Cellular®

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