In this age when everyone owns at least a cell phone, if you never heard of smartphones, you must be an old-fashion person. These years, we witness a dramatic spawning of smartphones in the global cellular phone market. As the name implies, a smartphone is supposed to be smart. But what is a smartphone? And how smart a smartphone can be?
In a nutshell, a smartphone is a cell phone that is updated with a number of digital functionalities out of a traditional cell phone originally made for phone calls and messages. Added with the advanced Internet-based technology, smartphones work as a personal digital assistant or a portable computer which you carry with everywhere.
With a smartphone in hand, besides the basic functions like making phone calls and messaging, you can send and receive emails, organize your personal and office files, and surf on the Internet for any intention like reading news, searching information, playing online games, tracking stock trends, etc. Besides, all smartphones can be linked to any PC or laptop, able to share with and load files or applications from each other. It is widely acknowledged that smartphones have create a lifestyle to modern people, making life easier and easier. That explains why many people are willing to invest big money in the small device.
Viewed from the development history of smallphones, we should say that smartphones are a complex of cellular phones and personal digital assistants. Conventionally, mobile phones were only used to make phone calls, just like landlines. The largest difference between a cellular phone and a land line phone lies in the fact that a cell phone is wireless and portable but a land line phone is connected to a wire and cannot be taken out of a fixed range of a certain place. Finally, cellular phones are developed with messaging function. On the other hand, PDAs as palmtop computers are limited to be used for computer technology-related tasks including organizing documents, keeping contact information and other data, listing agendas, taking notes, etc. In addition, most PDAs have wireless connectivity with Bluetooth and Wi-Fi, which enables the email capacities. Gradually, cell phones began to have functions typical of PDAs or even of personal computers while personal digital assistants developed with mobile phone features. Finally, the developments of both PDAs and cellular phones create a product line called smartphones, which include the functions of the two different devices.
The principal features of today’s smartphones include Internet access capacities, e-mail messaging capacities, ability to synch with computers, an operation system, a touch screen, a range of software and applications, etc.
All smartphones are made with an operation system which enables the operation of software applications. For instance, BlackBerry runs on the BlackBerry OS and iPhone from Apple on the iPhone OS. Besides basic models of software including contact manager, calendar and address book available in the majority of common cellular phones, a smartphone has a lot more about software. Most prevalent software models built in most smartphones include document and photo viewing and editing capacities, GPS mapping device, application download capacities, etc. Another outstanding feature of many smartphones lies in their ability to access the Internet at remarkable speeds, which is made possible by the development of Wi-Fi network and 3G technology. In spite of the fact that some smartphones cannot offer high-speed access to Web, but they all provide some sort of access. Also, the computer synchronization capacities make smartphones a great gadget which can share many documents or software applications with any computer. And the best point is, thanks to this synchronization functionality, you can use a computer to operate tasks for your smartphone. For example, you can organize the contact information from your smartphone in any computer—it is easier to operate in computers, of course.
Above are just some of the current features we can find in smartphones. As technology concerning smartphones advances constantly, more and more features will be added to make