The novel technology of mobile telephony has over the last years become the focus point of numerous discussions, both in academia and business environments, due to its tremendously social penetrating abilities. Making the conveyance from telephone’s cultural heritage to that of the mobile’s augmented reality has generated as much support from various critics, as it has discontent. But the fact still remains that for the privileged developed half of the world, mobiles have become to be viewed as a trendy necessity as well as a social networking tool.
An electronic telecommunications device, the mobile phone or cellular phone, commonly referred to as the “cell,” has become one of those personal property items that can fit the criteria of being both a gadget and a tool. Offering its communicating services since the early to mid 1980s, the considerably larger version of the mobile phone was permanently installed in vehicles as car phones. As technological innovations made miniaturization possible, the majority now of mobile phones are easily controlled and operated single-handed. Moreover, the standard voice feature has been enhanced with additional services, like text messaging, camera capabilities, internet browsing and MMS features for sending and receiving photos and video.
Mainly due to their low establishment costs and rapid deployments, mobile phones have since their first introduction spread rapidly throughout the world, outstripping the growth of fixed telephony. From Europe and Australia, to Asia and America, mobile phones are now widely used, with the majority of adults, teenagers and even children now owning at least one model. Packed with widely diverse features, from alarms to teleconference abilities, mobile phones have set the pace to a new type of communication based culture. But the extreme overload of cell phones has not resulted in closer or more genuine communication principles. Still people, in most cultures, base their business deals and personal affiliations to face-to-face interaction, leaving mobile telephony less ground to grow as a meaningful type of communication. After all, it is not that different than having a fixed telephone line; the difference mainly being that you carry that line whenever you might be.
Yet, mobile telephony use has become ubiquitous due to the interoperability factor telecom networks have endorsed and most have allowed it to spread across continents. In fewer than twenty years, mobile phones have indeed gone from being rare and expensive devices mainly used by businesses, to low-cost, trendy and personal items, used by everyone who wishes to have the ability to reach and be reached by others. But, interestingly enough, sociologists have realized that, as any other type of social networking device, mobile users began to develop vastly different practices based on their own cultural biases.