The first iPhone was released just over 13 years ago, on June 29th in 2007. Even though smartphones haven’t been in our lives for long, they have changed us and the world. We are living an interesting time when the majority has spent most of their lives without a smartphone, some have grown up as they developed and the youngest have learned to use them in the first years of their lives. Therefore, it’s not uncommon to see a child teaching their parent (or an older sibling) how to use their phone. Take a moment to think how your smartphone has changed the way you behave!
Access to information
Because of smartphones, access to information has become easier; think of folding maps, thick telephone books and going to the library instead of using a search engine. Some scientists claim that nowadays humans’ memory is better at recalling where to find information instead of remembering what the information actually is: you won’t remember your best friend’s phone number by heart, but you know exactly where to find it.
With the development of texting, social media and emojis, our communication has changed a lot. Abbreviations are used in everyday communication, in texts and sometimes in verbal communication too. You can even make a reference to a meme you sent your friend on Instagram or see a stranger practise a TikTok dance. Because of video calls and live streaming, we can get to know and communicate with people around the world.
15 years ago you wouldn’t have spent several hours looking at your friend’s photos from a small screen. Social media has made sharing easy and we are interested to know what’s going on in an old school friend’s life – and after a while you might find their mother’s new post about them moving abroad. With social media taking and sharing photos, especially selfies, has become so popular that it’s possible to even make a living out of it.
Less need to remember
Thanks to technology and your smartphone, you don’t even have to remember to take cash – or even a bank card – with you when you go shopping. As you leave the house, the only two things you make sure are with you are keys and your phone. Perhaps within the next decade the only necessary item will be your phone which you can use to lock the door.
Focus on the important
There is already plenty of information that our brains need to take in, but with the internet comes even more: there is often text, photos, videos and ads on the same website and your brain has to decide which to focus on. In today’s world multitasking and completing tasks that require shifting attention have become more common; think of how many times you have eaten while looking at your phone.There are tens of ways in which our behaviour has changed because of smartphones and many of them are still unknown. Nevertheless, smartphones have become a key part of our lives and having to stop using one would feel like an impossible task for many.