08/05/2015 05:59 pm ET Updated Dec 06, 2017

What Exactly Is A Smartphone Anyway? (Commentary)


Photo Credit: DeathToTheStockPhoto

In today's world of mobile, the smartphone is not just a device that people carry around so that life can be convenient - it's so much more than that. On a personal level smartphones are used for idea generators (mobile web), idea visualizers (video), purchase consultants (shopping), directional advocates (GPS), friend finders (social media), research assistants (Siri), administrative assistants (apps), entertainment (pretty much everything), Quick communicators (text), and these are just a few that roll of the top of my head in a matter of seconds.

Person-to-Company Smartphone Convergence

Because employees work for companies, and employees also carry smartphones, the company use of it is naturally more personal, even though it's used for business transactions. Almost organic in nature, the smartphone is an extension of one's hand. Companies know this and they prey off the addictive nature that a smartphone causes because of the information that flows in and out of it.

Business and marketing has changed forever because of the silly little device that sits next to us 24x7, yes, even at the bedside stand. Consumer's wallets will be lighter and businesses share of wallet will be larger. Businesses now will be able to track your every move, promote their products and services to you exactly where you are, predict your next purchase (from your smartphone) and say hello to you when you arrive and goodbye when you leave. Because many of us around the world have ignored other aspects of our life just to stare at the small screen, we actually created this phenomenon ourselves.

Your Smartphone Is Your Kid

This may sound a little crazy, but you know it's true. People buy smartphones and personalize them, change their case colors based on their clothing that day, change ringtones, screenshots, avatars and oh so many other things I don't care to dive into. Just like your kids, your smartphone requires attention. In fact, it demands attention, it talks to you and makes sounds that say, "pay attention to me, I want to communicate to you." Your friends, family and business associates are also part of this lifelong journey of figuring out how to fit in the rest of your life around your smartphone. Yes, I did say, fit in the rest of your life. It takes money, energy, conversation, input, feedback, cleaning, care, needs to be close to you, needs to be covered and even connected to other devices just like it. Wow, life around us certainly has changed since the smartphone entered the picture.

A Brief Look Back At Being "Social"

Nearly two years ago I wrote an article for the Huffington Post called "Are You Social or Anti-Social?" It was my rant about how social media has taken over people's lives. I was grappling with the true meaning of the word social. Today, social has taken yet another quantum leap to becoming the world's means of communicating anything, anytime, anywhere for whatever reason, regardless of how it makes people feel. This is scary. Thanks to smartphones, our lives have changed and social media is part of that paradigm shift.

As much as I love my smartphone, I do have to wonder where this is all going? What is technology doing to my life? My personality? My family? My brain? Hopefully when I am sitting in a rocking chair enjoying life in my golden years I will be able to look back and see how it has shaped me for the better. I am choosing to use my smartphone to be a smarter person, make smarter decisions and enjoy life around me without being so reliant on my addictive device called a smartphone.

Related Huffington Post Articles:
Disconnect From Your Smartphone and Rest Your Mind
8 Mobile Marketing Tips You Don't Want To Miss