- Over 66% of Americans are Smartphone users, and for many of these people, their Smartphone is the primary internet usage device.
- According to internetworldstats.com, English is the most widely spoken language on the internet, accounting for more than 948million users.
- There are currently more than 1 billion smartphone users worldwide and over 2.5 billion apps available across android and apple ecosystems.
“My Smartphone has caused a tectonic shift in the way I approach life and consume media,” says Timothy Westerly, a Florida based marketing specialist.According to data available on internetworldstats.com, as of June 2016, 89% of North America’s total population, some 360 million people, accessed the internet and of those more than 60% used a mobile device, as opposed to desktop computers which at one time served as the main device used to access the internet. Smartphones and similar devices are in essence fully featured pocket-sized computers, with full internet search facilities plus all major social media platforms, analysts say this externalization of data affects how the brain handles all the information available to us today.
Altering the how the brain works.The authors of a study published in the August 2011 issue of “Science” conclude that constant access to data via the internet and social media is changing how the brain retains and recognizes information. Essentially internet connected devices are serving as a kind of external memory for a human being, the brain now no longer having to internalize the vast wealth of information available to it, only remember where and how to access that data when the need arises. In the 2010 TED Talk, “We Are All Cyborgs Now,” Amber Case argues that internet connected devices and their always-on internet connectedness, have become more than just devices, but rather a constant connection to an online pervasive digital world, of social interaction and knowledge, encompassing the entire globe. A digital extension of ourselves similar to an extra digital limb. “This is the first time in the entire history of humanity that we’ve connected in this way,” she says in a transcript of the speech. “And it’s not that machines are taking over. It’s that they’re helping us to be more human, helping us to connect with each other.
“We’re just increasing our humanness and our ability to connect with each other, regardless of geography.”In 2012, Time Magazine and mobile technology company Qualcomm conducted a joint survey of 5,000 Smartphone users of all ages and income groups across eight countries. They asked respondents how Smartphones had changed their lives, and the most common response among the group was that smartphones had allowed them to become more interconnected, to stay in touch with friends and family across great distances, while also being better informed about the world around them. Over 75% of respondents agreed that this change was for the better, with a mostly positive outlook.