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THE PIPELINE: Thinking About Phones

By Stephen Abram - Posted Jan 1, 2006
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We used to place the phone in the front hall of our homes because the extra length of telephone wire cost more. Now we have mobile handsets that allow us to have the phone where we are. We used to wire the first "mobile" phones to our cars, now we wear them on our hips or carry them in our pockets or purses. Things change. They evolve. But sometimes our mind-sets stay mired in the past. For instance, at one time we dialed phones. Few of us do that anymore, but we still maintain the word in our language. Every once in a while we need to look at the everyday devices we use and think about them again. (Lordy, my father still calls the refrigerator the icebox!)

SmartPhones—just how smart are they? I am told that these are our future devices of choice—possibly dominating communication with the decade. Take a look at the photo of my phone, a Palm Treo 650.

It is a pretty feature-rich phone. I can make phone calls. Duh! I can also teleconference and go hands free and pick up voicemail and see who's calling. That's pretty plain by today's standards. It does e-mail and SMS (short messaging services). It stores and plays music. It's a camera and small video recorder. It can act like a Dictaphone too. It has those personal management features such as calendars with notification and calculator, etc. I can use MS Word, Excel, and PowerPoint, and I could add PDF capability, too.


This article is available in its entirety in a variety of formats — Preview, Full Text, Text+Graphics, and Page Image PDF — on a pay-per-view basis, courtesy of ITI's InfoCentral. CLICK HERE.

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