In recent years, people have transferred their focus on life from immovable locations, for example residential houses and workplaces, to non-fixed places. The principal demands of modern people are: receiving messages, processing information, and entertainment. In addition, because of the global financial crisis in 2008, people reduced their budget for consumer electronic products. Therefore, the demands for multiple-function “smart handheld devices” (T.C. Wang, T.M. Chen, J.S. Wu, 2001) have increased dramatically, especially smart phones.
According to Laudon, K.C. and Laudon, J.P. (2006), the smart phone is a combination of mobile phone and personal digital assistant (PDA). Generally, except for basic communication functions such as mobile phones, a smart phone possesses the following features:
A large size LCD touchscreen.
Enhanced ability of Internet access, such as Wi-Fi, 3G (third generation) and Bluetooth.
An advanced computing capability and providing functions of schedule management, picturing, and displaying music, etc.
Relying on open operating systems which served users with third-party applications.
This study presented the development of smart phones which includes current marketing situations and their impact on three aspects, communication, entertainment, and everyday life. The main purpose of this research work is to show how smart phones have successfully penetrated most people’s life.
This essay will first demonstrate the evolution of smart phones and will provide some results of the market research carried out. The effects on communication, entertainment, and everyday life will be discussed in the next section. Finally suggestions for possible solutions to overcome any negative impacts will be discussed.
The development of smart phones
Regarding the evolution of smart phones, progress has been great and very fast over the past two decades. Through a timeline, the development of smart phones will be illustrated.
In 1994, IBM published the first smart phone “Simon” in the world. Instead of being a mobile phone, the major applications were calendar, address book, note book, calculator, e-mail, games. Although the functions were not attractive and their price was high, the design without physical keyboard caught the attention of some early users and businessmen. Then, in 1997, two of the major manufacturers, Nokia and Research In Motion (RIM), promoted their first smart phones, Nokia Communicator 9000 and Blackberry, respectively.
In 2000, Nokia launched the series of Nokia 9210 with the first colour screen. The four main functions of Nokia 9210 were supporting e-mails with attached files, World Wide Web (WWW) and Wireless Application Protocol (WAP), Office Program File and mobile multimedia. It was also the first smart phone which worked with an open operating system, Symbian OS. That means users could download various applications. Furthermore, as the concept of laptops took off, users could expand the storage memory by inserting Multimedia Cards (MMC). Because of its powerful capability in document processing, the market position was focused on businessmen who travel frequently.
One year later, Microsoft published an operating system called Pocket PC 2002 which can be applied to smart phones. With some new technologies, for example Bluetooth, Wi-Fi, and MSN Messenger, compared to other systems, Pocket PC 2002 was a competitive challenger. The other operating system, Smartphone 2002, was issued by Microsoft in the same year as well and it emphasized that users can handle the system by using only one hand.
After 2004, the market of smart phones has developed vigorously. The first reason was that diversified applications entered the market and also increased the efficiency of hardware. In addition, with numerous applications and the powerful functions of system integration, smart phones could become increasingly personalized.
Apple Inc. launched its...
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