Smartphones have changed the way we interact with the world around us. They have also transformed the way we communicate, go about our daily lives, and access information and services.
Smartphones help us stay in touch with friends and family, so much so that nearly 90% of people check social media on a daily basis. Social networking has become the prominent way of staying in touch with people, and more so with smartphones.
Social networking sites like Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube have brought people from all walks of life together. These sites have made it possible for people to connect with others on a more personal level, as opposed to just being a member of a ‘fan club’ of a celebrity or a sports team.
Now, with smartphones, social media has become even more accessible and convenient. People who might not have interacted with one another before can now meet up virtually through these sites.
The following paragraphs will explore the impact smartphones have had on social media, and how social media is changing because of smartphones.
What is a Smartphone and How Does it Change Social Media?
A smartphone is a handheld device that performs most of the functions of a computer as well as a telephone. The term ‘smartphone’ has become synonymous with a mobile phone that allows its user to access the Internet.
As social media has become more prominent, smartphones have had a profound impact on the way it is used.
The development of smartphones is rooted in the desire for a mobile device to perform more than one task. Early examples of these devices were ‘mobile computers’ such as the IBM Simon and the Motorola StarFIle. These early devices were used for email and browsing the Internet, but they could not be used as a full replacement for a computer.
With the advent of smartphones, a new kind of social media started to emerge. This ‘new media’ was rooted in the idea of being able to communicate with others in a more personal manner through the use of a mobile device.
The Advantages of Smartphones for Social Media Usage
Finding a group of people you’re connected with online and being able to interact with them virtually is a great advantage of smartphones.
Couples who might not be able to meet up in person because of work or other commitments can communicate with one another almost as if they were in the same room together. Couples can use social media to communicate about special moments or even plan outings or events.
Smartphones are also very useful for individuals with disabilities. These devices can be operated through voice commands or from a physical keyboard. This means that people who are blind or have other physical disabilities can now enjoy using social media.
Examples of Smartphone-Focused Social Media Apps
Facebook - This app allows users to connect with their friends, family members, and acquaintances virtually. The app is also a great place for individuals to share updates, photos, and other content.
Twitter - This app allows users to ‘tweet’ updates and photos, sometimes even links to news articles. Twitter is also a great place to interact with other users and share ideas.
Instagram - This app focuses on photo sharing, but it also has links to sharing photos with friends via Facebook.
Disadvantages of Smartphones for Social Media Usage
Smartphones can sometimes lead to the use of social media during non-conversation times, such as while driving or while walking around the house. In some cases, people have even been charged with ‘distracted driving’ because of their smartphone usage.
People can also be caught up in ‘screen withdrawals’ or ‘screen fatigue’ if they constantly use social media on their smartphones. This term can be used to describe the ‘weary’ feeling that comes from using smartphones for too long without taking breaks.
Smartphones have changed the way we use social media and how we interact with others virtually. Smartphones have also allowed us to use social media when we’re not feeling well, or during non-conversation times. The following paragraphs will explore how social media has changed because of smartphones, and how it can be used to its advantage.
Smartphones have made it possible for us to stay in touch with friends and family members remotely, even when we’re not able to physically meet in person.
Couples can now communicate with one another virtually and even plan outings, events, and holidays together. Smartphones have also made it possible for people with disabilities to use social media.
Social media has become even more accessible and convenient because of smartphones. People who might not have interacted with one another before can now meet up virtually through these sites.
Smartphones can be a distraction for people who are trying to focus on work or other activities. Although smartphones can be very useful, they can also be a distraction from other priorities in life.
Now that smartphones have had such a profound impact on social media, it is important to see how it can be used both positively and negatively.