We may as well Have our Phones Built in to our Hands.

MOBILE PHONES RULE THE WORLD; THEY’RE THE FIRST THING WE CHECK IN THE MORNING AND THE LAST THING AT NIGHT.

Is your mobile phone always within reach?
Do you own a smart phone ?

Nokia 1100 Mobile Phone

My First Phone a Nokia 1100 – Purchased 2006

Samsung S6 Edge 2015 Smartphone

My Current Mobile Phone a Samsung S6 Edge – Purchased 2015

 

Being 20, I was born approximately 2 decades after the first mobile phone was invented in the early 70’s. The mobile phone you use today is nothing like the one that made the first mobile telephone call. Even since purchasing my first phone, a Nokia 1100 in 2006 (picture left) the phone I own now is completely different (picture right); the look, feel and features of handsets have advanced. A decade ago we had no touchscreen, some models had colored screens (not mine).  Qwerty keyboards belonged on computers; texting required pressing each button multiple times (so annoying if you missed and had to go round again).

 

Today’s mobile phones allow us to do a thousand and one things at the touch of a button (icon), but do they truly replace the need for face-to-face communication?

Mobiles have made it more convenient to drop a quick text, than to make time to actually meet up and spend time with people. There maybe days were you want to be alone, have some ‘me’ time, but should we always be reverting to avoiding interaction?

In the table below are some advantages and disadvantages I will be touching upon today:

Device Communication Face-to-Face Communication
Advantages Record of Conversation
Easier
More Personal
Gives Impression
Disadvantages Missing Non-Verbal Communication
Lack of Identity
Inconvenient
Availability

DEVICE VS Face-to-face COMMUNICATION

OFCOM Study

Device communication has become part of our culture and the majority of us communicate in this fashion. The study found that 58% [1] of adults communicate via text message, each adult sending approximately sending 200 per month [1]. Although it’s is not necessarily our preferred method because according to Ofcom 67% of adults [1] would rather participate in face-to-face communication.

YAY! for Technology

Taking a look at the advantages of devices mentioned before you can see why people choose to communicate via devices. Firstly it is easier, I mean you can send a SMS from pretty much anywhere. Technically with mobile data, you can use any form of digital communication; email, FB etc. from that device in your hand. So why try and find a convenient time where everyone is available. .Lets just send a virtual message which I can send to all of them simultaneously. There job done.

Not saying I don’t approve of this ‘easier’ method, I use it all the time, so much so that I have an unlimited everything plan. However I feel that because my childhood wasn’t full of the wonders of the smartphone, the tablet, Wi-Fi etc. that myself and others of similar upbringing appreciate the face-to-face aspect of communication that little bit more. Personally I believe we should not replace traditional methods all together, but integrate technology to aid our lives, while maintaining social skills and not becoming slaves to technology.

Secondly ”record of conversation’, with so many rules and regulations everywhere you turn, it’s great to have a written copy of what has been said or done. Technology is great for this we can record, take notes, type up and share everything we do. This enables use to be able to refer back if questioned or to re-confirm what was discussed. Also having something in writing is considered more formal, plus can be used as evidence BUT! This has been able to happen or years. Yes, I know. However the bonus to having a digital copy is that technology allows us to search documents quickly and share them to multiple people at once (without printing an posting) this saves time, money, resources and the environment.

NAY! for Technology

 Now, lets take a look at the aspects technology is missing. Firstly non-verbal communication, defined as “those aspects of communication, such as gestures and facial expressions, that do not involve verbal communication” [2]. Non-verbal communication gives an insight into how the receiver should interpret the message. It’s not something you really think about, it happens as you speak and allows the meaning to be clearer. Messages lose this, text can’t always make clear they way in which you want to say something. Meaning the reader could understand the message completely wrong.

Secondly when messaging by any format, you are just a name at the bottom of the information. Maybe, not in personal conversations, but in work environments or large groups, you are. By meeting face-to-face however other people have an identity to go with that name, probably even a idea of some of your personality. Heard the saying “it’s not what you know, it’s who you know” ? Well, it a very good one, people that know you are more likely to take an interest in something your saying or doing.

So from this post I would like to you to take that saying with you and think about your social life and see if you can make some connections, that could improve your personal life or your work life?
If your  student like me, my lectures say it all the time, get to know people cuz who never know who you might need a favor from in the future.
What you choose to do is up to you, but social skills are just as important as knowing your stuff.

Don’t Forget

Look out for my poll based on this week topic.

Come back on 10th January 2016 where I will be discussing Instagram and Social Media. Posting Tuesday Midday: UK Time. (approx.)

Links

[1] – Read the full article about texting vs face-to-face here: http://www.telegraph.co.uk/technology/9406420/Texting-more-popular-than-face-to-face-conversation.html

 [2] See full definition here: http://www.dictionary.com/browse/nonverbal-communication

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