How mobile applications have changed the way we live
It’s easy for the older generation to dismiss a mobile application (or “app”) as another of the youth’s newfangled ways of losing touch with the real world and meaningful human interaction. However, in many ways, technology has opened new doors to sociability, creating instant global communication and bringing a wealth of unthinkable knowledge to our fingertips.
Of course, when you think of apps, the first pictures which pop up in your mind are most likely the pervasive logos of the big social media labels: Facebook, Twitter, Snapchat, Instagram. There is no doubt that problems can arise from an obsession with this kind of platform, but when you strip them back to their bare bones, these apps are really about keeping in touch. Skype, in particular, helps us to reach out to people internationally, to maintain long-distance relationships and forge multinational business deals.
Apps have enabled us to get our hands on an incredible amount of entertainment and advanced software. When it comes to gaming, it’s hard not to find what you are looking for. Pokemon Go, in particular, shows the sheer capability and scale of mobile gaming, combining the virtual and real worlds (sometimes to an alarming degree). When you add to this the artistic uses that apps have in the media industry – for example, the Adobe suite provides software for video editing, photography and sound mixing – it’s clear to see that in many ways, applications have evolved the way we live for the better.
With apps such as Amazon becoming all the more popular, it’s easier than ever to have goods delivered to you last minute for any occasion. Deliveroo and the likes also offer (very) fast food and on top of picking up from chain restaurants, allows you to get meals from the most unlikely of restaurants couriered straight to your door.
Where before all medical advice had to be gleaned either over the telephone or in person, now it is possible to get tips with the downloadable NHS Direct app. The program helps you to check your symptoms, directs you to all the correct numbers, aids you in assessing which professional you need to see, and will even assist in navigating you to your nearest walk-in centre. This not only speeds up the process of getting the right treatment, but also leaves the line free for those with urgent emergencies. On top of this, fitness apps and associated hardware such as Fitbits enable us to measure our steps, our calories intake and even our heart rate so that we can maintain a healthy lifestyle and set positive goals for the future.
Not only is it possible to look everything up on Google, but it is now possible to find special apps which act as virtual teachers, helping you to brush up your knowledge daily. Duolingo is a particularly popular example which teaches you languages from scratch, testing your proficiency and enabling you to build up your skills through simple exercises.
The editorial unit