The iPhone Influence
BY HANNAH RAMESAR
The multi-functional iPhone is taking over almost every aspect of life in the 21st century. Initially released by Apple on June 29, 2007, the iPhone has become ubiquitous with over 100 million iPhones sold to date worldwide.
The iPhone has proved to be revolutionary, not just technologically, but in how we integrate technology in to our daily lives. Before the late 1980’s, the concept of a wireless, portable device that kept you occupied and in touch was not even a reality. For this reason, many of grandparents and some parents are baffled by the vast capabilities of smart phones. The rapid changes in technology, especially in cell phones, is surpassing anything previous generations could dream of.
“Back in the day we didn’t even have cell phones, let alone ones that we can talk to and they respond to you,” 75-year old Victoria Thomas said. “I just got my iPhone last year, spent hundreds of dollars on it and I still don’t even know how to send a text message.”
With all the functionality of the iPhone it is understandable that some users are overwhelmed. “There’s an app for that” is a popular advertising slogan for the iPhone and it’s true, literally anything a person can think of has application on the iPhone. There are applications to keep you organized, keep you in touch socially, keep you entertained and keep you up to date with anything business related. For these reasons, this phone appeals to individuals of all ages, with Facebook, Tumblr, and Temple Run enticing the average teenager and the Stocks, Wonderlist and Email applications captivating adults. One of the most popular applications is called “Find iPhone”, which simply allows an owner to pinpoint the exact whereabouts of their device if it’s misplaced.
“During my fourth period class last week, I couldn’t find my phone and for a second I thought my life was over. I started asking everyone in class if they had an iPhone too so they could download “Find iPhone” and maybe help me find mine,” freshmen Ashley Sarmiento said.
The iPhone’s latest feature is Siri- “Your wish is her command.” On the iPhone 4S, Siri allows you to use voice activation to send messages, schedule meetings, place phone calls, and more. The program understands what you say, knows what you mean, and even talks back. If you have an iPhone, you no longer need a traditional camera, video recorder, planner, or even a music player. The iPhone encompasses all of that, all in one compact, portable, high-quality device.
However, as smart phones become integrated into people’s daily lives, over-dependence on them can become an issue. One study involving a group of Japanese junior high students, finds that 37% of teens felt they wouldn’t be able to live without a cell phone once they had it. The feeling of “I will die without my phone” is one that is often exaggerated, however few can deny that this device has addictive qualities.
“I use my phone for pretty much everything,” freshman Victoria Kreymerman said. “I’m pretty sure I wouldn’t survive without it because everything is on it. Siri tells me anything I want to know and my phone can tell me when it’s hot outside, does math for me, can help me study and check my grades. If I ever lost my phone I would cry!”
People’s constant attachment device’s like the iPhone also raises health concerns. Cell phones emit a radio frequency and tissues nearest to where the phone is held can absorb this frequency. Exposure to ionizing radiation is known to increase the risk of cancer. Not only is exposure to radiation hazardous, the excessive use of technology is known to be a cause of anxiety. According to assistant professor of psychiatry at the UF College of Medicine, Lisa Merlo, the idea of being out of touch with technology is enough to induce anxiety. Even though cell phones were originally developed to make modern life more convenient, they are beginning to interfere in the lives of those who cannot turn them off.
Relying on the iPhone to run our lives is easy when we have unlimited information at the tip of our fingers. Endless possibilities are present when it comes to Apple, and the iPhone. They began with a GSM phone, developed a faster processing 3G network and now the iPhone 4S, and soon to be- iPhone 5. What’s next for the iPhone- a bigger screen for better data usage or an even more compact build? The soon-to-be-released iPhone 5 is rumored to have a faster multi-core processor, integrated graphics update, near-field communication (NFC), spec bump, a better camera with 108op video recording and LTE 4G speeds. If the iPhone was taking over people’s lives before, who knows what it is going to do now.
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