30 Different Cell Phone Uses
Cell phones, also known as mobile phones, can usually do much more nowadays than just call and text people. An ability to access the internet, as well as increased computing power, plus many other technological developments, have transformed their capabilities.
This article lists thirty examples of the many uses of these versatile devices. The list is not exhaustive, that would be almost impossible given that new apps and capabilities are being developed and released every day. I have therefore restricted the list of tasks and functions to thirty that I've employed by myself in the last six months or so. Please feel free to add more of your own in the comments section.
30 Uses For a Cell Phone
Below are 30 ways to use a cell phone.
- Make and Receive Calls
- Send and Receive Texts
- Send and Receive Emails
- Photographs and Videos
- Social Media
- Find Information on The Internet
- Online Banking and Finances
- Up-To-Date Contacts List
- Navigation and Maps
- Listen to Music
- Watch Videos
- Weather Forecasts
- Video Calls
- Up-To-Date News
- Take Card Payments
- Follow Live Sporting Events
- Read eBooks
- Notes and Reminders
- Buy and Display Tickets for Travel and Events
- Listen to Podcasts
- Play Games
- Identify Stars and Constellations in the Sky
- Fitness and Weight Loss
- Remote Control for Wifi Enabled Devices
- Data Storage
I will explain each use below in more detail.
1. Make and Receive Calls
The original purpose of phones, speaking to friends, family, customers, and coworkers is still an important function and one that is used often. That said, texting and messaging have increasingly replaced calling over the years, partly because they are seen as less interruptive communication methods.
2. Send and Receive Texts
Nowadays, it's not solely written messages that you can send and receive with your phone. The arrival of MMS (Multimedia Messaging Service) makes sending photographs and other media possible, with or without accompanying text.
3. Send and Receive Emails
Although emails are perhaps not quite as important as they once were, thanks to the increased possibilities of messaging media, they remain an important part of modern life. Cell phone technology means that you can receive, read, and send emails wherever you are.
4. Photographs and Videos
Thanks to mobile phones, pretty much everyone in the modern world has a camera and video recorder with them all the time. This has brought about a complete change in behavior and how we do things. Live events and news can be photographed or videoed and appear online almost instantaneously.
5. Social Media
It's difficult to imagine that social media would have quite such a big grip on our lives, if it weren't for cell phones. We can access our Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and other accounts whenever we choose, posting comments, images, videos, and other media.
6. Find Information on The Internet
Back in my younger days, if there was a piece of information that needed to be known, we'd have to visit a library, make a phone call, or ask a specialist in person. The combination of cell phone technology and the internet means that we can access a wealth of information from anywhere and at any time.
7. Online Banking and Finances
Whether it's to check up on their account balance, deposit a check, or transfer money, people increasing use their phones to do their banking. Other financial tasks too, such as monitoring stocks and shares, paying bills, and keeping tabs on personal credit scores are often done by phone.
8. Up-To-Date Contacts List
Having a list of contacts that can be accessed at all times is incredibly useful. It also enables you to know who is contacting you when receiving incoming phone calls or messages. Adding new contacts is easy and straightforward and the phone organizes all the information for you.
9. Navigation and Maps
There is no reason to get lost if you have a smartphone. Navigation technology, such as Google Maps, combined with GPS can tell you where you are and what's around you. Traveling by road, foot, cycle, or public transport in an unfamiliar area is now easy.
10. Listen to Music
Whether you are using an app like iTunes to listen to music tracks, or streaming music from the web, your phone can function as a music player. There are also radio channels, podcasts, and video platforms such as Youtube that you can access.
11. Watch Videos
Video hosting platforms such as Youtube, Vimeo, and Dailymotion can be accessed on cell phones. News clips, sporting events, entertaining short videos posted on social media, or hosted on other websites can be watched too. Both prerecorded clips and live streaming provide multiple options.
12. Weather Forecasts
Knowing what the weather is doing or likely to be doing in the near future can be very useful. Modern smartphones can access all sorts of weather information, such hourly, day, or weekly forecasts, as well as satellite videos showing cloud movements.
Fewer people wear watches nowadays, thanks to cell phones which show us the time. Alarm clocks too are less common, as many people set their phones to awaken or alert them. You can also use a phone as a stopwatch, or to discover the time in other parts of the world.
14. Video Calls
Speaking on the phone used to be an audio only experience. Nowadays, you can see the person or people too, if you wish, using applications such as Skype, Facebook video calls, or Google Duo. It's more intimate than voice alone.
A calculator can come in very useful for work and home tasks. Whether it's calculating taxes, splitting up tip money, or working out the home budget, having a device at your fingertips that can calculate percentages, add up, divide, multiply, subtract and perform other tasks can be invaluable.
16. Up-To-Date News
All the traditional news networks and newspapers have their own apps nowadays, and there are many other sources too. You can watch the news, listen to, or read it, as well as receive updates to your phone regarding important current events.
17. Take Card Payments
Apps like Square and PaySimple are great for businesses and individuals who need to process card payments. You can either swipe in the card details, or manually enter the relevant information needed for the payment.
Modern phones provide all that's necessary for the average person to organize their daily life. You can create multiple calendars, a calendar can be shared with others, you can sync with email, customize which notifications you receive regarding events.
19. Follow Live Sporting Events
Keeping up with how your team is doing has never been easier. Mobile phones can enable you to watch events, listen to commentary, read pre- and post-match reports. They can also send you alerts when something important happens, such as scoring or conceding.
Most smartphones can increase the text size enough to make reading an eBook comfortable. While I personally prefer a larger device as my primary eBook reader, my phone is great for when I don't have my tablet or Kindle.
21. Notes and Reminders
In the old days, people would often have to scribble down information that they needed on scraps of paper. Phones are a superior way to record personal reminders and notes, as unlike pieces of paper, you don't tend to lose them and the information is easier to organize.
22. Buy and Display Tickets for Travel and Events
As well as being able to use a phone to buy a ticket for travel or an event, you can now often just display the ticket on your phone when you need to show it to a ticket inspector. This avoids the need for carrying around lots of printouts, or traditional tickets.
23. Listen to Podcasts
Part of the joy of podcasts is that you can listen to them when you are on the move or doing other things. There are so many podcasts to choose from nowadays and smartphones make it easy to listen to them, either through ear phones or portable speakers.
24. Play Games
Phone games are fun and can provide a lot of entertainment during down times. There are so many choices nowadays and many of the games are social, in that you get to play with or against real people via the internet.
25. Identify Stars and Constellations in the Sky
Apps such as StarView and Star Walk are pretty mind blowing. They are able to identify stars, constellations, and other heavenly bodies through the user pointing his or her phone at the sky. It still amazes me that this technology exists.
I can't even list all the times that my phone's flashlight has saved me. Whether it's trying to find a door key in the dark, searching for something that's fallen into a dingy place, or just walking around an unfamiliar place at night.
27. Fitness and Weight Loss
There are numerous popular apps now to help phone users tackle health issues, particularly losing weight and getting fitter. Pedometer apps such as Google Fit and Leap Fitness can count your steps to gauge how much exercise you are getting. Nutrition and calorie intake can also be calculated through the use of apps.
28. Remote Control for Wifi Enabled Devices
If you've never tried it before, I can assure you that using your phone as a remote control for household devices that are wifi-enabled is a lot of fun. I have set up my phone to control the television and DVD player, it's not as difficult as you might think.
29. Data Storage
Phones have so much more memory now than they used to, which means that you use them like you would a USB memory stick in certain situations. For instance, if you want to transport digital information such as work documents, music files, or photographs from one computer or device to another.
eWallets, or digital wallets, are designed to securely store the phone user's payment information and passwords that relate to various payment methods. Their purpose is to make it much easier and quicker to pay for things using your phone. I use the Apple version but there are many other eWallets to choose from.
This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.
© 2019 Paul Goodman