Quick confession: we always get a kick out of listening to Maroon 5’s “Payphone” song just because the lyrics are so anachronistic. Maybe we’re just not payphone people, what with our heavy reliance on our mobile phones, tablets, and other similar devices. If it were us, you can be sure we wouldn’t be spending all of our change at a public telephone booth just so we can call home and appeal to our would-be ex-girlfriend to reconsider. No siree! If we have to reach her, it’s going to be through voice calls, texts, e-mails, Facebook messages or, if we’re really desperate, tweets. Good thing we own a smartphone that can perform all that or we would be singing along with Adam Levine, filled with anguish, and trying to hit those ridiculously high notes.
Seriously though, it’s amazing how so many technologies have been rendered stale by smartphones. The public telephone is just one of the unfortunate casualties, for obvious reasons. Here are four more that may be on the way to oblivion (if they haven’t already).
A cellphone without an alarm clock in this day and age? Definitely unheard of! Of course, there are still those who prefer to use their good ol’ alarm clocks at home. But then, why bring a bulky alarm clock on long trips when you could easily use your slim and sleek phone’s alarm clock feature?
Digital video cameras
Some attribute the demise of Cisco’s Flip video cameras to the general-purpose smartphone. Of course, it’s not the only culprit, after all. Canon and other camera businesses haven’t declared bankruptcy. Still, it can’t be denied that most phones nowadays are sporting decent cameras and offering instant HD recording, making the once big and bulky digital video cameras somewhat, if not downright, redundant.
Did you know that sales of iPods and other MP3 players dipped 22 percent in 2012? The reason, as pointed out by research firm Mintel, is none other than the emergence of smartphones. Apparently, consumers are turning more and more to smartphones as their gadget of choice, leading experts to predict that sales of MP3 players will halve again by 2017.
Consider the cost of the least expensive GPS units (around $80 according to The New York Times), and then think about how your iPhone or Android phone can do the same thing for more than half that price, or even free. Take it from us; you’re better off not spending $200 on the best GPS unit out there when your smartphone can do just as good a job of getting you to where you need to be.
What about you? Has your phone replaced most of the things in your cupboard of gadgets? Well not to freak you out, but some are saying that tablets will soon replace smartphones; that is, unless a new technology emerges and wipes out both. Who knows what the future will bring? Maybe we’ll soon see the end of business phone systems, desktops, cable television, wristwatches, and so on. Whatever happens, we can depend on one sure thing: brilliant minds will always find ways to change the world with their wonderful ideas, inventions, and innovations.