Cell Phones, the Good and Bad

Cellular phone, cell phone, wireless telephone, digital telephone, phone, cell (whatever you may call it): a telephone with access to a cellular radio system so it can be used over a wide area, without a physical connection to a network.

Cell phones are a conclusive technological revolution; a new phone is coming out every day. SO much that today’s cell phones have more computing power than the computers used for the Apollo 11 moon landing. But whether you have an android or an iPhone or anything in between they serve mostly similar purposes for everyone — cell phones have come a long way.

As we all know, cell phones are convenient and save us a lot of time. The main purposes of these gadgets are to stay connected anytime and anywhere and to help in times of emergencies. But they are useful in other aspects like directions to the nearest gas station, international news updates, access to music, sending or receiving a text, email, or call, playing games, or much more, cell phones are quick and at our finger tips. In fact, it’s quite impressive to have this all in one device. It’s not easy to fit an mp3 player, digital camera, phone, gps and practically laptop into a small device you can carry around comfortably. But here we have it and that’s not even all, cell phones now come with flashlights, calculators and much more you can download in the app store like an eBook reader, currency converter, teaching apps, portable scanners, food ordering, health and fitness, payment and money management, photo editing, shopping, travel, and the list does not stop. To further discuss camera convenience on a cell phone, most cell phones today have better photo quality than the cameras we used couple years ago. In fact, less people own cameras today because they rely on their phones. Another real life experience that is very helpful to me is you can practically go to any country and as the language barrier may be an issue, you have your cell phone to translate for you. Every day we are impressed with some new creation.

However, every good thing comes with loss. A lot of people abuse cell phone usage which has resulted in a lot of negative effects on the world. One of the biggest problems schools are having is a huge increase in cheating and the cause of this is cellphones. Students can easily text each other for answers or simply search them up on the internet. Sex exploitation has come to an all-time high because of how convenient it is to send naked pictures to one another; people have committed suicide from leakage of pictures and/or messages. Another con is cell phones have become a fashion accessory, the nicer the one, the more people you impress. People are buying cell phones for ridiculous prices even when they don’t need them or have a fully functioning one already. This also leads to more E-Waste; electronic-waste recycling rates have improved we are still too slow to cope up with the amount of cell phones discarded. Cell phone usage also leads to distraction and procrastination whether it be to a young child or a working adult. People hold off studying, doing homework, cooking, cleaning, etc because they are too distracted with these gadgets. This also leads to a heightened level of danger; people are texting and driving, crossing the street while on their phones, blasting music and not being aware of their surroundings, sleeping with their phones plugged into the wall and tucked under their pillow, etc. People are actually dying because of cell phones, people are losing their hearing, eyesight and most importantly their humanly features. We realize how convenient cell phones are and begin to rely on them. We don’t worry about learning directions, recipes, geography, simple math, history, etc. The second part of losing our humanly features is we’ve began to isolate ourselves from the real world and live on the internet. People have more internet friends than real physical friends, they talk on the phone more than they do in real life, they express their opinions over the internet but wouldn’t dare speak publicly, some haven’t even lost table manners, the list goes on and on.

In today’s era, almost everyone has one and they’ve practically become a necessity; more people in the world have mobile phones than toilets and the average user unlocks their phone at least 110 times a day. Cell phone usage has gotten out of hand so much that nomophobia has developed, which is the fear and anxiety of not having your phone or losing signal.

We’ve identified the pros and cons… where do we draw a line and find a balance? I would like to further discuss this topic, the good and bad as several articles have been brought up by news agencies like the Washington Post, New York Times, Huffington Post, etc. with various different stories on cell phone usage.

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