Cell phones have become an extremely popular gadget used for daily living and, in most cases, have replaced landlines when it comes to communication. Becoming more technologically advanced, these devices can take and send pictures and videos instantly, as well as connect to the web for surfing. Many people, even children, now have their own cell phones, with the potential to do an endless number of tasks, such as looking for answers to certain questions. However, they can also expose us to unfavorable situations.
As we might notice, everywhere we go, you can see a lot of people with their eyes glued to the small screens, which gives some people a unsightly view on our future. Some of us are even obsessed with checking our Facebook accounts, uploading images on Instagram and tweeting about what a good time we are having, instead of actually having a good time.
All of these mean that responsible individuals, such as parents, guardians and teachers, need to be aware of both the pros and cons of cell phones before allowing anyone to use them at their own will.
List of Pros of Cell Phones
1. High Level of Portability
Many people have preferred to use cell phones to replace their landlines, as these gadgets are usually smaller and portable transportable. The need to stay around a certain area to use a landline is eliminated with a cell phone, as you can usually go across the states and countries with little worry of losing service with a mobile device. However, cell phone providers would often charge extra to your monthly bills to allow the service outside their home country.
2. Easy Access to the Web
Most cell phones these days are well built with a component that allows users to connect to the internet without utilizing a computer. This technology these gadgets have is really beneficial because people will no longer have any difficulty with searching for essential data they might need.
3. More Savings
Many mobile plans today include free features, including long-distance calls and a certain number of free text messages. These benefits can help us stay connected with families and friends who are living far away without incurring extra costs. Some providers even include convenient features, such as caller ID and free voice mails. This is the reason why many people choose to use mobile phones exclusively to rid themselves of monthly landline bills.
4. Constant Communication Between Parents and Children
Cell phones allow parents and their children to stay in touch. So, if a child needs to stay after school or needs a ride, he will be able to call his dad or mom to let them know his situation. This is especially important because pay phones are becoming rare. Cell phones can also be important in emergency situations when parents need to quickly get in touch with their children or vice versa.
5. Great Tracking Capabilities
The tracking devices installed in cell phones allow someone, such as a parent, to know the exact location of somebody important to him/her. Because these devices exist, both parties will have the assurance that they are in a safe place.
6. Added Safety
Good proof to support this is that cell phones can provide a measure of security if you get lost, if your car breaks down or if you feel threatened while walking through a poorly lit area. No other technology, aside from the mobile phone, has made people feel more connected with emergency services or family and friends who can run to their rescue.
7. Rescue for Emergencies
Somehow related to the previous pro, cellular phones have already saved many lives, due to their function to access the police, fire or ambulance teams to respond to emergency situations. Now, if you were to get lost in an unfamiliar place, you can just call for help to get out of the situation. Many models of these gadgets have very useful services, such as GPS and 24-7 hotlines, that can be accessed any time you are in distress. For disastrous events, like a tornado, earthquake or school attack, adults and children can immediately call for help.
8. More-Responsible Children
Cellular phones can help us teach children on how to be responsible. Parents can set guidelines for their children, such as staying within a text message range or certain minutes of call. For the children, they will learn to become responsible for their individual gadgets, especially when parents set rules about breaking or misplacing it.
9. Powerful Learning Tool
Because of the latest features and applications put in mobile phones these days, children will learn a lot of things from it.
10. Quickness and Convenience of Taking Pictures
With these devices, pictures can be taken instantly, sent out and deleted, often saving us time and money. Mothers can capture that funny and cute shots of their babies or you can take a photograph of a celebrity you spotted while out. Your phone camera can document the area you are parking in at a crowded theme park, can plot your work schedule and copy class notes without wasting paper or writing it down. Moreover it lets you take a picture of an interesting item that you want to remember later and just send it instantly to your mailbox or save it in your phone.
List of Cons of Cell Phones
1. Increased Cheating at School
Using cell phones to cheat in exams has become a big issue in many schools in the US. Students are now able to text answers under their desks while at it. Since many of these devices are compatible with the internet, schoolchildren can sometimes even find the answers using a search engine on their phones. And if they are caught cheating, they can face serious consequences from the administration.
2. Expensive Price
Cellular phones, especially smartphones, are really expensive to purchase, and you must earn and save lots of money first before you can own one.
3. Heightened Level of Danger
Records reveal that texting while driving has already caused millions of deaths from traffic accidents each year. Included in this number are teenagers, who are contributing to an insane amount of accidents due to mobile devices. While some cellular phones have already been integrated with voice-navigation and hands-free capabilities, the threat from using these devices while driving is not totally removed, but just downplayed. When driving, we should just resist to text or call because this can cause our attention to slip from the road, from which outcomes can be devastating.
4. More E-Waste
Everybody wishes to have the newest, fastest and fanciest cell phone on the market, and manufacturers are happy to oblige. Damage and upgrades are making millions of cell phones obsolete each year. Now, here is the problem: Cell phone coatings are formulated with lead, and these devices’ lithium-ion batteries can explode if exposed to direct sunlight or high temperatures, which are the usual conditions in landfills. Though electronic-waste recycling rates are improving, they are too slow to cope up with the issue.
Especially among children, cell phones can be very distracting from more important events they should do, such as studying, doing homework or even crossing the street. Research shows that children are more likely to be hit by a vehicle if they are texting or talking on a cell phone while crossing the street. Since these gadgets can connect them to the internet easy, they would be taken away from their study or homework.
6. Too Much Convenience
Due to the high level of convenience, anyone can get a hold of you anywhere and anytime through mobile phones. Surely, there are certain times you do not want this, but people you know expect you to be reachable since you own such a device. This is true especially among teenagers who do not their parents to always call them while they are away.
Accept it—we are addicted to our mobile phones, and the idea of leaving them at home or turning them off would give us instant anxiety. This is also due to the fact that making an actual voice phone call can make many of us nervous, so we would just prefer to converse in short text messages. And again, many people are obsessed with checking in on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and other social media networks.
8. Sex Exploitation
Sending sexual messages or pictures to or sexting another person is also an issue for parents to consider before purchasing cell phones for their children. There are already many cases where adults and children are receiving messages that include explicit messages from people who have their numbers and choose to send them such messages.
It is a big fact that cell phones are helpful to people. After all, they are created with a good purpose in mind, but many individuals are failing to know how to use them in a proper way. Based on the pros and cons listed above, what can you say about this issue?
Brandon Miller has a B.A. from the University of Texas at Austin. He is a seasoned writer who has written over one hundred articles, which have been read by over 500,000 people. If you have any comments or concerns about this blog post, then please contact the Green Garage team here.