Smartphones have entered a universal cult status, something that everyone in the 21st century must own lest they be left by society. Many modern conveniences rely on smartphones and their multifunctional capabilities. Thousands of formerly analog features have now shifted to a digital format, allowing smartphones to harness them, effectively removing the need for analog devices. Cameras, telephones, tape recorders- these things used to be their own dedicated device but are now all contained with your smartphone.
But the computer-like nature of modern cell phones allows for a wider variety of features and functionalities. Many software developers and engineers have created highly advanced applications for different purposes. Below are some of the least commonly known ones, and some might be popular- but there are uses for it that are not as well-known.
GPS Functionalities for Many Uses
At this point, everyone knows that smartphones have GPS functionalities that can be used to track where you are on a map. However, the basic premise here is that the GPS tracks where the phone is- making it an excellent tool to give something without GPS functionality immediate tracking options.
Especially for those who have a collection of old smartphones lying around, you can easily turn an old smartphone into a GPS tracker. Charge up that old smartphone, turn on the GPS and connect it to your primary ones. Wherever that older one is, your smartphone will be able to find it. You can then use this to keep track of your car (especially if you’re parking it in a new area) or your luggage. This technique can also be utilized if you have kids going out to play and you want to make sure they’re safe.
Shop for Rare Finds
If you are among those whose interests include rare items and collections, then shopping apps might be something you’re familiar with. From services like Aliexpress to Amazon, you can get almost anything you need or want online. However, for highly niche markets, there are other similar yet specific apps.
Alternatively, if you can’t find one for your hobby, look for online marketplaces where surplus or secondhand goods are sold. These types are rife with rare items, often for very low prices, too. You can also use notification apps adjacent to online shopping apps. These types of apps will notify you if something you’re looking for appears in any of the shopping apps you frequent. You can look for rare toys, signed music memorabilia, or even a specific issue of a comic book without having to spend long nights trying to look for it.
Your Personal AI Assistant
With the promise of faster internet and better cloud computing capabilities, smartphones are beginning to rival desktop computers when processing power. Of course, for specific use-case workstations, smartphones would trail behind. But for day-to-day purposes, smartphones are more than enough. They can even accomplish feats that would have been science fiction not more than twenty years ago.
Google and Apple’s mobile voice assistants are continuously improving — with better accent and language comprehension, more accurate text-to-speech, and vice versa, all while processing more complex instructions. With dedicated virtual assistants now available (and highly competitive), AI assistants are only bound to improve as the demand increases.
In addition to its personal assistant capabilities, smartphone AIs can also manage your other smart devices. Things like controlling the lights with a smart LED, controlling the temperature with a WiFi-enabled thermostat, or even monitoring your home security through a smartphone-bound security system, these things are all within your smartphone’s capabilities. Indeed, smartphones have far exceeded what was initially thought of as “cellphones.”
Health and Accessibility Assistant
One of the most important developments to come out of recent times is the accessibility features embedded in many smartphones. These accessibility features might not seem all that useful for able-bodied folks, but they make a lot of difference for the differently-abled. Even for those suffering from ailments, features like monitoring your heart rate, breathing, and temperature are handy tools to have. Combined with further innovations such as smartwatches, smartphones have become excellent health and accessibility tools, giving unparalleled conveniences to those struggling with their daily life.
Smartphones are arguably the most influential invention of the 21st century. It has changed how we live our lives, consume media, and even interact and communicate. Despite its popularity, it still holds a myriad of different software and hardware capabilities. Many of these capabilities will be developed even further and perhaps break into mainstream consciousness when the masses find a use.