By Sally Rummel
Technology has truly revolutionized our world, creating amazing tools and resources that put useful information at our fingertips instantly.
Today, it’s difficult to imagine our lives without a computer, smartphone or tablet—or apps that have changed the way we travel, handle our health and financial well-being, and even meet our soul mates. Technology has also changed the way we gather news and has re-defined “friendships” through social media platforms like Facebook and Instagram. It can even impact our sleeping hours with fitness trackers that measure our slumber habits and patterns.
Communication and News
The number of active web users worldwide now totals 3.2 billion people, spreading information everywhere imaginable. To make that happen, an unbelievable 2 million smartphones are sold around the world every day.
The amount of information shared on social media networks is mind-boggling. According to Forbes.com, Facebook has 2 billion monthly active users, Instagram has 1 billion users, Pinterest has 500 million, and Twitter has 317 million users monthly. YouTube has the eyes of 1.8 billion users each month, reaching more video viewers than Google’s Gmail—making it the company’s most popular service.
Apple News+ is a new service from Apple that gives customers 24-hour access to 200-plus popular worldwide magazines and newspapers with the click of a mouse.
Paying Bills, Transferring Money and Shopping
Did you leave home without your wallet? You don’t have to worry about that anymore.
No longer do we have to physically enter a bank building to withdraw money or transfer funds. Online banking is now the norm in the financial industry and is accessible to people everywhere. Financial companies like PayPal and Venmo have platforms where people can send and receive money safely from any location using the internet.
When it’s time to pay a bill, people can now do it with a smartphone and banking app rather than remembering when it’s due and sending a check with a stamp and envelope.
If you’re shopping today, you don’t even have to carry cash. Apple Pay and Google Wallet link your bank account to your mobile phone, where your funds are secure. Speaking of shopping, we can buy many of the items we need online, whether we’re retail shopping or buying groceries. And, if you’re looking for gently-used items at bargain prices, try online marketplaces like Craigslist and Facebook Marketplace.
Entertainment for the Fun of it
Technology has totally changed the way we watch TV, movies and read books. With your mobile device, you can “stream” TV shows you want to watch, choosing when and how you want to watch them. Streaming services like Netflix, Hulu and Amazon Prime Video offer access to cable TV programs, as well as original content. For example, Apple TV+ will be launching this fall 2019, about the same time Disney debuts its new streaming service, Disney+.
People who love to read books will also find more reasons to enjoy new technology there, especially when they’re on the go. E-reader devices like Kindle and Nook can hold thousands of books without taking up space in your home. Your local library offers limitless e-book titles and audiobooks that can be downloaded to your smartphone or tablet.
Technology makes it easier to access music wherever you are. You can stream any songs by your favorite artists through platforms like Spotify and Apple Music, using your busy electronic devices.
Dating and Relationships
You can even meet your soul mate online through dozens of dating services — from marriage-making Match.com to quick and easy hookups through Tinder, and many romantic sites in-between.
You can also use social platforms like Facebook and Instagram to get re-acquainted with people from years past, to rebuild friendships.
Home Devices and More
Many services in your home and car can be linked to the internet through Wifi, making their functions accessible remotely. Some of these include door bells, thermostats, garage doors, home lighting, home entertainment and more.
You can use a voice assistant like Amazon Alexa, Google Assistant, and Apple Siri to control most home smart devices. It feels like there are new choices to consider almost daily.
There’s also technology for healthier living with fitness trackers and weight loss apps, navigation through Google Maps, Waze and others, as we travel the road toward driverless cars of the future. After all, those vehicles will all be computer-controlled, too.
The way we use technology in our daily lives is almost limitless and includes every moment of our waking hours, so use it to enhance your interactions in our modern world and live your best life.