Smartphone

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Two smartphones: a Samsung Galaxy J5 (left) and an iPhone 6S (right) Fotos produzidas pelo Senado (30554309793).jpg
Two smartphones: a Samsung Galaxy J5 (left) and an iPhone 6S (right)

Smartphones are a class of mobile phones and of multi-purpose mobile computing devices. They are distinguished from feature phones by their stronger hardware capabilities and extensive mobile operating systems, which facilitate wider software, internet (including web browsing [1] over mobile broadband), and multimedia functionality (including music, video, cameras, and gaming), alongside core phone functions such as voice calls and text messaging. Smartphones typically include various sensors that can be leveraged by their software, such as a magnetometer, proximity sensors, barometer, gyroscope and accelerometer, and support wireless communications protocols such as Bluetooth, Wi-Fi, and satellite navigation.

Mobile phone portable device to make telephone calls using a radio link

A mobile phone, cell phone, cellphone, or hand phone, sometimes shortened to simply mobile, cell or just phone, is a portable telephone that can make and receive calls over a radio frequency link while the user is moving within a telephone service area. The radio frequency link establishes a connection to the switching systems of a mobile phone operator, which provides access to the public switched telephone network (PSTN). Modern mobile telephone services use a cellular network architecture, and, therefore, mobile telephones are called cellular telephones or cell phones, in North America. In addition to telephony, 2000s-era mobile phones support a variety of other services, such as text messaging, MMS, email, Internet access, short-range wireless communications, business applications, video games, and digital photography. Mobile phones offering only those capabilities are known as feature phones; mobile phones which offer greatly advanced computing capabilities are referred to as smartphones.

Mobile computing use of portable computers

Mobile computing is human–computer interaction by which a computer is expected to be transported during normal usage, which allows for transmission of data, voice and video. Mobile computing involves mobile communication, mobile hardware, and mobile software. Communication issues include ad hoc networks and infrastructure networks as well as communication properties, protocols, data formats and concrete technologies. Hardware includes mobile devices or device components. Mobile software deals with the characteristics and requirements of mobile applications.

A mobile operating system is an operating system for phones, tablets, smartwatches, or other mobile devices. While computers such as typical laptops are 'mobile', the operating systems usually used on them are not considered mobile ones, as they were originally designed for desktop computers that historically did not have or need specific mobile features. This distinction is becoming blurred in some newer operating systems that are hybrids made for both uses.

Contents

Early smartphones were marketed primarily towards the enterprise market, attempting to bridge the functionality of standalone personal digital assistant (PDA) devices with support for cellular telephony, but were limited by their battery life, bulky form, and the immaturity of wireless data services. In the 2000s, BlackBerry, Nokia's Symbian platform, and Windows Mobile began to gain market traction, with models often featuring QWERTY keyboards or resistive touchscreen input, and emphasizing access to push email and wireless internet. Since the unveiling of the iPhone in 2007, the majority of smartphones have featured thin, slate-like form factors, with large, capacitive screens with support for multi-touch gestures rather than physical keyboards, and offer the ability for users to download or purchase additional applications from a centralized store, and use cloud storage and synchronization, virtual assistants, as well as mobile payment services.

Personal digital assistant

A personal digital assistant (PDA), also known as a handheld PC, is a variety mobile device which functions as a personal information manager. PDAs were largely discontinued in the early 2010s after the widespread adoption of highly capable smartphones, in particular those based on iOS and Android.

Telephony is the field of technology involving the development, application, and deployment of telecommunication services for the purpose of electronic transmission of voice, fax, or data, between distant parties. The history of telephony is intimately linked to the invention and development of the telephone.

BlackBerry line of wireless handheld devices and services

BlackBerry is a line of smartphones, tablets, and services originally designed and marketed by Canadian company BlackBerry Limited. These are currently designed, manufactured, and marketed by TCL Communication, BB Merah Putih, and Optiemus Infracom for the global, Indonesian, and South Asian markets (respectively) using the BlackBerry brand under license.

Improved hardware and faster wireless communication (due to standards such as LTE) have bolstered the growth of the smartphone industry. In the third quarter of 2012, one billion smartphones were in use worldwide. [2] Global smartphone sales surpassed the sales figures for feature phones in early 2013. [3]

In telecommunication, Long-Term Evolution (LTE) is a standard for wireless broadband communication for mobile devices and data terminals, based on the GSM/EDGE and UMTS/HSPA technologies. It increases the capacity and speed using a different radio interface together with core network improvements. The standard is developed by the 3GPP and is specified in its Release 8 document series, with minor enhancements described in Release 9. LTE is the upgrade path for carriers with both GSM/UMTS networks and CDMA2000 networks. The different LTE frequencies and bands used in different countries mean that only multi-band phones are able to use LTE in all countries where it is supported.

Feature phone

Feature phone is a term typically used as a retronym to describe a class of devices that are still technically otherwise smartphones, besides their lack of highly advanced hardware and capabilities of modern ones. Feature phones tend to use a proprietary, custom-designed software and user interface, and typically provide voice calling and text messaging functionality in addition to basic multimedia and Internet capabilities and other services offered by the user's wireless service provider. Feature phones have a backlit LCD screen and micro USB port and have a physical keyboard, a microphone, SD card slot, a rear-facing camera to record video and capture pictures; and GPS. Some feature phones include a rudimentary app store that include basic software such as mobile games, calendar and calculator programs.

History

Forerunner

IBM Simon and charging base (1994) IBM Simon Personal Communicator.png
IBM Simon and charging base (1994)

The first commercially available device that could be properly referred to as a "smartphone" began as a prototype called "Angler" developed by Frank Canova in 1992 while at IBM and demonstrated in November of that year at the COMDEX computer industry trade show. [5] [6] [7] A refined version was marketed to consumers in 1994 by BellSouth under the name Simon Personal Communicator. In addition to placing and receiving cellular calls, the touchscreen-equipped Simon could send and receive faxes and emails. It included an address book, calendar, appointment scheduler, calculator, world time clock, and notepad, as well as other visionary mobile applications such as maps, stock reports and news. [8] The term "smart phone" or "smartphone" was not coined until a year after the introduction of the Simon, appearing in print as early as 1995, describing AT&T's PhoneWriter Communicator. [9] [ non-primary source needed ]

Frank J. Canova

Francis James Canova Jr. is an American electronics designer who originated the idea for the IBM Simon and has thus been described as the inventor of the smartphone.

IBM American multinational technology and consulting corporation

International Business Machines Corporation (IBM) is an American multinational information technology company headquartered in Armonk, New York, with operations in over 170 countries. The company began in 1911, founded in Endicott, New York, as the Computing-Tabulating-Recording Company (CTR) and was renamed "International Business Machines" in 1924.

COMDEX former computer expo

COMDEX was a computer expo trade show held at various locations in the Las Vegas Valley of Nevada, USA, each November from 1979 to 2003. It was one of the largest computer trade shows in the world, usually second only to the German CeBIT, and by many accounts one of the largest trade shows in any industry sector, and COMDEX exhibitions have been held in many other countries from 1982 to 2005, altogether 185 shows. The first COMDEX was held in 1979 at the MGM Grand, with 167 exhibitors and 3904 attendees. In 1981, the first COMDEX/Spring was held in New York City.

PDA/phone hybrids

Beginning in the mid-late 1990s, many people who had mobile phones carried a separate dedicated PDA device, running early versions of operating systems such as Palm OS, Newton OS, Symbian or Windows CE/Pocket PC. These operating systems would later evolve into early mobile operating systems. Most of the "smartphones" in this era were hybrid devices that combined these existing familiar PDA OSes with basic phone hardware. The results were devices that were bulkier than either dedicated mobile phones or PDAs, but allowed a limited amount of cellular Internet access. The trend at the time, however, that manufacturers competed on in both mobile phones and PDAs was to make devices smaller and slimmer. The bulk of these smartphones combined with their high cost and expensive data plans, plus other drawbacks such as expansion limitations and decreased battery life compared to separate standalone devices, generally limited their popularity to "early adopters" and business users who needed portable connectivity.

Palm OS mobile operating system

Palm OS is a discontinued mobile operating system initially developed by Palm, Inc., for personal digital assistants (PDAs) in 1996. Palm OS was designed for ease of use with a touchscreen-based graphical user interface. It is provided with a suite of basic applications for personal information management. Later versions of the OS have been extended to support smartphones. Several other licensees have manufactured devices powered by Palm OS.

Newton OS operating system

Newton OS is the discontinued operating system for the Apple Newton PDAs produced by Apple Computer, Inc. from 1993–1997. Newton OS was written entirely in C++ and trimmed to be low power consuming and use the available memory efficiently. Many applications were pre-installed in the ROM of the Newton and to save on RAM and flash memory storage for user applications.

Symbian mobile operating system

Symbian is a discontinued mobile operating system (OS) and computing platform designed for smartphones. Symbian was originally developed as a closed-source OS for PDAs in 1998 by the Symbian Ltd. consortium. Symbian OS was a descendant of Psion's EPOC, and ran exclusively on ARM processors, although an unreleased x86 port existed. Symbian was used by many major mobile phone brands, like Samsung, Motorola, Sony Ericsson, and above all by Nokia. It was also prevalent in Japan by brands including Fujitsu, Sharp and Mitsubishi. As a pioneer that established the smartphone industry, it was the most popular smartphone OS on a worldwide average until the end of 2010—at a time when smartphones were in limited use—when it was overtaken by Android, as Google and its partners achieved wide adoption. It was notably not as popular in North America.

In March 1996, Hewlett-Packard released the OmniGo 700LX, a modified HP 200LX palmtop PC with a Nokia 2110 mobile phone piggybacked onto it and ROM-based software to support it. It had a 640×200 resolution CGA compatible four-shade gray-scale LCD screen and could be used to place and receive calls, and to create and receive text messages, emails and faxes. It was also 100% DOS 5.0 compatible, allowing it to run thousands of existing software titles, including early versions of Windows.

Hewlett-Packard American information technology company

The Hewlett-Packard Company or Hewlett-Packard was an American multinational information technology company headquartered in Palo Alto, California. It developed and provided a wide variety of hardware components as well as software and related services to consumers, small- and medium-sized businesses (SMBs) and large enterprises, including customers in the government, health and education sectors.

HP 200LX

The HP 200LX Palmtop PC, also known as project Felix, is a personal digital assistant introduced by Hewlett-Packard in August 1994. It was often called a Palmtop PC, and it was notable that it was, with some minor exceptions, a MS-DOS-compatible computer in a palmtop format, complete with a monochrome graphic display, QWERTY keyboard, serial port, and PCMCIA expansion slot.

Nokia 2110 cell phone model

The Nokia 2110 is a cellular phone made by the Finnish telecommunications firm Nokia, first announced in early 1994. It was the first Nokia phone with the famous Nokia tune ringtone. The phone has functions including SMS send/receive, and lists 10 dialed calls, 10 received calls and 10 missed calls. When the phone was released it was considerably smaller than others of its price and had a bigger display, so it became very popular. It also featured a "revolutionary" new user interface featuring with two dynamic softkeys, which would later lead to the development of the Navi-key on its successor Nokia 3110, as well as the Series 20 interface.

The Nokia 9000 Communicator (right) and the updated 9110 model (left) Nokia-9110-9000.jpg
The Nokia 9000 Communicator (right) and the updated 9110 model (left)

In August 1996, Nokia released the Nokia 9000 Communicator, a digital cellular PDA based on the Nokia 2110 with an integrated system based on the PEN/GEOS 3.0 operating system from Geoworks. The two components were attached by a hinge in what became known as a clamshell design, with the display above and a physical QWERTY keyboard below. The PDA provided e-mail; calendar, address book, calculator and notebook applications; text-based Web browsing; and could send and receive faxes. When closed, the device could be used as a digital cellular telephone.

In June 1999 Qualcomm released the "pdQ Smartphone", a CDMA digital PCS smartphone with an integrated Palm PDA and Internet connectivity. [10]

Subsequent landmark devices included:

Japanese cell phones

In 1999, Japanese wireless provider NTT DoCoMo launched i-mode, a new mobile internet platform which provided data transmission speeds up to 9.6 kilobits per second, and access web services available through the platform such as online shopping. NTT DoCoMo's i-mode used cHTML, a language which restricted some aspects of traditional HTML in favor of increasing data speed for the devices. Limited functionality, small screens and limited bandwidth allowed for phones to use the slower data speeds available. The rise of i-mode helped NTT DoCoMo accumulate an estimated 40 million subscribers by the end of 2001, and ranked first in market capitalization in Japan and second globally. This power would later wane in the face of the rise of 3G and new phones with advanced wireless network capabilities. Japanese cell phones increasingly diverged from global standards and trends to offer other forms of advanced services and functionality, such as mobile payments, near-field communication (NFC), and 1seg mobile television. [17] [18] [19] [20] [21]

Early smartphones

Several BlackBerry smartphones, which were highly popular in the mid-late 2000s BlackBerry 8820, BlackBerry Bold 9900 and BlackBerry Classic.jpg
Several BlackBerry smartphones, which were highly popular in the mid-late 2000s

Smartphones were still rare outside Japan until the introduction of the Danger Hiptop in 2002, which saw moderate success among U.S. consumers as the T-Mobile Sidekick. Later, in the mid-2000s, business users in the U.S. started to adopt devices based on Microsoft's Windows Mobile, and then BlackBerry smartphones from Research In Motion. American users popularized the term "CrackBerry" in 2006 due to the BlackBerry's addictive nature. [22]

Outside the U.S. and Japan, Nokia was seeing success with its smartphones based on Symbian, originally developed by Psion for their personal organisers, and it was the most popular smartphone OS in Europe during the middle to late 2000s. Initially, Nokia's Symbian smartphones were focused on business with the Eseries, [23] similar to Windows Mobile and BlackBerry devices at the time. From 2006 onwards, Nokia started producing consumer-focused smartphones, popularized by the entertainment-focused Nseries. Until 2010, Symbian was the world's most widely used smartphone operating system. [24]

Form factor shift

The original Apple iPhone; its introduction contributed to the steady rise of smartphones that feature large touchscreen interfaces without physical keypads IPhone 1st Gen.svg
The original Apple iPhone; its introduction contributed to the steady rise of smartphones that feature large touchscreen interfaces without physical keypads

In the 2000s, it was common for smartphones to have a physical T9 numeric keypad or QWERTY keyboard in either a candybar or sliding form factor. Some smartphones had resistive touchscreens, which allowed for virtual keyboards and handwriting input with a finger or a stylus, thus also allowing easy entry of Asian characters. [25]

In 2007, the LG Prada was the first mobile phone released with a large capacitive touchscreen. [26] Later that year, Apple Computer introduced the iPhone. The iPhone was also designed around a large capacitive touchscreen, but added support for multi-touch gestures (for interactions such as "pinching" to zoom in and out on photos and web pages). Such phones were notable for abandoning the use of a stylus, keyboard, or keypad typical for smartphones at the time, in favor of a capacitive touchscreen for direct finger input as its only input type. The invention of the touchscreen smartphone is often attributed to Apple, but they actually made the smartphone as we know it today something mainstream due to the company's popularity in the US (and to a lesser extent worldwide) and they made popular the way that people interact with smartphones. Following the iPhone's success despite its original retail price of over US$500, other smartphone manufacturers started to use the same basic design of the iPhone.

The iPhone was "not a smartphone by conventional terms, being that a smartphone is a platform device that allows software to be installed", [27] until the opening of Apple's App Store a year later, which became a common means for smartphone software distribution and installation. The first iPhone also faced criticism for not supporting the latest 3G wireless network standards, but was praised for its hardware and software design, and its June 2007 release was met with heavy demand, with customers waiting in lines outside Apple Store locations to be among the first to purchase it. [28]

The screen-focused hardware of phones centered around a capacitive touchscreen stimulated the software to focus on features such as a web browser designed to render full web pages (as opposed to stripped down WAP services), multimedia functionality (such as music and videos), and online services such as maps apps. This, along with the iPhone's appraisal and Apple's popularity and influence, was a key factor in the initial success of the iPhone.

The advantages of a design around a capacitive touchscreen affected the development of another smartphone OS platform, Android (and later Blackberry 10), with a more BlackBerry-like prototype device scrapped in favor of a touchscreen device with a slide-out physical keyboard, as Google's engineers thought at the time that a touchscreen could not completly replace a physical keyboard and buttons. [29] [30] [31] The first Android device, the HTC Dream, was released in September 2008. [32] Although Android's adoption was relatively slow at first, it started gaining widespread popularity in 2010, largely due to its functionality at a low price, and in early 2012 dominated the smartphone market share worldwide, which continues to this day. Android is based around a modified Linux kernel, which makes Linux the most widely used operating system worldwide, and it also makes Android the most widely used general purpose operating system worldwide. Apple's iPhones are more widespread in rich, developed countries than in relatively poor and developing countries, where having an iPhone or a high end Android smartphone is considered a luxury. [33]

Android and iPhone devices popularized the smartphone form factor based on a large capacitive touchscreen, and led to the decline of earlier, keyboard- and keypad-focused platforms. Microsoft, for instance, discontinued Windows Mobile and started a new touchscreen-oriented OS from scratch, called Windows Phone. Nokia abandoned Symbian and partnered with Microsoft to use Windows Phone on its smartphones. Windows Phone became the third-most-popular smartphone OS, before being replaced by Windows 10 Mobile, which declined in share to become "largely irrelevant" at less than 0.5% of the smartphone market. [34] Palm replaced their Palm OS with webOS. BlackBerry Limited, formerly known as Research In Motion, made a new platform based on QNX, BlackBerry 10, with which it was possible to control a device without having to press any physical buttons; this platform was later discontinued.

By the mid-2010s, almost all smartphones were touchscreen-only, and Android and iPhone smartphones dominated the market, with Android being more popular in developing countries, and the iPhone being more popular in developed, rich countries.

Developments in the 2010s

The iPhone X. Apple iPhone X - front (8121).jpg
The iPhone X.

In the early 2010's, larger smartphones with screen sizes of at least 5.5 inches diagonal, dubbed "phablets" , began to achieve popularity, with Samsung's Galaxy Note series gaining notably wide adoption. [35] [36] Phablets have become the industry standard,[ citation needed ] with many companies abandoning smaller, 4-inch displays, except in their cheapest models.[ citation needed ]

In 2013, Fairphone launched its first "socially ethical" smartphone at the London Design Festival to address concerns regarding the sourcing of materials in the manufacturing [37] followed by Shiftphone in 2015. [38] In late 2013, QSAlpha commenced production of a smartphone designed entirely around security, encryption and identity protection. [39] Some companies began to release smartphones incorporating flexible displays to create curved form factors, such as the Samsung Galaxy Round and LG G Flex. [40] [41] [42]

In October 2013, Motorola Mobility announced Project Ara, a concept for a modular smartphone platform that would allow users to customize and upgrade their phones with add-on modules that attached magnetically to a frame. [43] [44] Ara was retained by Google following its sale of Motorola Mobility to Lenovo, [45] but was shelved in 2016. [46] That year, LG and Motorola both unveiled smartphones featuring a limited form of modularity for accessories; the LG G5 allowed accessories to be installed via the removal of its battery compartment, [47] while the Moto Z utilizes accessories attached magnetically to the rear of the device. [48]

The first smartphone with a fingerprint reader was the Motorola Atrix 4G in 2011. [49] In September 2013, the iPhone 5S was unveiled as the first smartphone on a major U.S. carrier since the Atrix to feature this technology. [50]

By 2014, 1440p displays began to appear on high-end smartphones. [51] In 2015, Sony released the Xperia Z5 Premium, featuring a 4K resolution display, although only images and videos could actually be rendered at that resolution (all other software is upscaled from 1080p). [52] Microsoft, expanding upon the concept of Motorola's short-lived "Webtop", unveiled functionality for its Windows 10 operating system for phones that allows supported devices to be docked for use with a PC-styled desktop environment. [53] [54] Other major technologies began to trend in 2016, including a focus on virtual reality and augmented reality experiences catered towards smartphones, the newly introduced USB-C connector, and improving LTE technologies. [55] As of 2015, the global median for smartphone ownership was 43%. [56] Statista forecast that 2.87 billion people would own smartphones in 2020. [57]

New trends for smartphone displays began to emerge in 2017, with both LG and Samsung releasing flagship smartphones utilizing displays with taller aspect ratios than the common 16:9 ratio. These designs allow the display to have a larger diameter, but with a slimmer width than 16:9 displays with an equivalent screen size. [58] [59] [60] Another trend popularized that year were designs—colloquially known as a "notch"—where the front-facing camera, and sometimes other sensors typically located along the top bezel of a device, are contained into a tab-like area at the top of the device that the display wraps around. These designs allow for "edge-to-edge" displays that take up nearly the entire height of the device, with little to no bezel along the top. This design characteristic was popularized by the Essential Phone (which featured a circular tab for its camera) and iPhone X (which used a wider tab to contain a camera and facial scanning system). [61] [62] [63] [64] In 2018, the first smartphones featuring fingerprint readers embedded within OLED displays were announced, followed in 2019 by an implementation using an ultrasonic sensor. [65] [66]

An example of a flexible display Flexible display.jpg
An example of a flexible display

Smartphones with foldable displays were theorized as possible once manufacturing costs and production processes were feasible. [67] In November 2018, the startup company Royole unveiled the first commercially available foldable smartphone, the Royole FlexPai. Also that month, Samsung presented a prototype phone featuring an "Infinity Flex Display" at its developers conference, with a smaller, outer display on its "cover", and a larger, tablet-sized display when opened. Samsung stated that it also had to develop a new polymer material to coat the display as opposed to glass. [68] [69] [70] Early examples of foldable phones from other manufacturers became the subject of rumors in early 2019; [71] [72] Samsung officially announced the Galaxy Fold, based on the previously-demonstrated prototype, in February 2019 for a release in late-April. [73]

Hardware

Central processing unit

Smartphones have central processing units (CPUs), similar to those in computers, but optimised to operate in low power environments.

The performance of mobile CPU depends not only on the clock rate (generally given in multiples of hertz) [74] but also on the memory hierarchy. Because of these challenges, the performance of mobile phone CPUs is often more appropriately given by scores derived from various standardized tests to measure the real effective performance in commonly used applications.

Display

A smartphone touchscreen Livraria do Senado (22622160063).jpg
A smartphone touchscreen

One of the main characteristics of smartphones is the screen. Depending on the device's design, the screen fills most or nearly all of the space on a device's front surface. Many smartphone displays have an aspect ratio of 16:9, but taller aspect ratios became more common in 2017.

Screen sizes are measured in diagonal inches. Phones with screens larger than 5.2 inches are often called "phablets". Smartphones with screens over 4.5 inches in size are commonly difficult to use with only a single hand, since most thumbs cannot reach the entire screen surface; they may need to be shifted around in the hand, held in one hand and manipulated by the other, or used in place with both hands. Due to design advances, some modern smartphones with large screen sizes and "edge-to-edge" designs have compact builds that improve their ergonomics, while the shift to taller aspect ratios have resulted in phones that have larger screen sizes whilst maintaining the ergonomics associated with smaller 16:9 displays. [75] [76] [77]

Liquid-crystal displays are the most common; others are IPS, LED, OLED, and AMOLED displays. Some displays are integrated with pressure-sensitive digitizers, such as those developed by Wacom and Samsung, [78] and Apple's Force Touch system.

Sound

Some audio quality enhancing features, such as Voice over LTE and HD Voice have appeared and are often available on newer smartphones. Sound quality can remain a problem due to the design of the phone, the quality of the cellular network and compression algorithms used in long distance calls. [79] [80] Audio quality can be improved using a VoIP application over WiFi. [81] Cellphones have small speakers so that the user can use a speakerphone feature and talk to a person on the phone without holding it to their ear. The small speakers can also be used to listen to digital audio files of music or speech or watch videos with an audio component, without holding the phone close to the ear.

Battery

A high-capacity portable battery charger USB battery charger.jpg
A high-capacity portable battery charger

By the end of 2017, smartphone battery life has become generally adequate; [82] however, earlier smartphone battery life was poor due to the weak batteries that could not handle the significant power requirements of the smartphones' computer systems and color screens. [83] [84] [85]

Smartphone users purchase additional chargers for use outside the home, at work, and in cars and by buying portable external "battery packs". External battery packs include generic models which are connected to the smartphone with a cable, and custom-made models that "piggyback" onto a smartphone's case. In 2016, Samsung had to recall millions of the Galaxy Note 7 smartphones due to an explosive battery issue. [86] For consumer convenience, wireless charging stations have been introduced in some hotels, bars, and other public spaces. [87]

Accessories

A wide range of accessories are sold for smartphones, including cases, screen protectors, power charging cables, wireless power stations, USB On-The-Go adapters (for connecting USB drives and or, in some cases, a HDMI cable to an external monitor), add-on batteries, headphones, combined headphone-microphones (which, for example, allow a person to privately conduct calls on the device without holding it to the ear), and Bluetooth-enabled powered speakers that enable users to listen to media from their smartphones wirelessly.

Cases range from relatively inexpensive rubber or soft plastic cases which provide moderate protection from bumps and good protection from scratches to more expensive, heavy-duty cases that combine a rubber padding with a hard outer shell. Some cases have a "book"-like form, with a cover that the user opens to use the device; when the cover is closed, it protects the screen. Some "book"-like cases have additional pockets for credit cards, thus enabling people to use them as wallets.

Accessories include products sold by the manufacturer of the smartphone and compatible products made by other manufacturers.

Software

Mobile operating systems

A mobile operating system (or mobile OS) is an operating system for phones, tablets, smartwatches, or other mobile devices.

Mobile operating systems combine features of a personal computer operating system with other features useful for mobile or handheld use; usually including, and most of the following considered essential in modern mobile systems; a touchscreen, cellular, Bluetooth, Wi-Fi Protected Access, Wi-Fi, Global Positioning System (GPS) mobile navigation, video- and single-frame picture cameras, speech recognition, voice recorder, music player, near field communication, and infrared blaster. By Q1 2018, over 383 million smartphones were sold with 85.9 percent running Android, 14.1 percent running iOS and a negligible number of smartphones running other OSes. [88] Android alone is more popular than the popular desktop operating system Windows, and in general smartphone use (even without tablets) exceeds desktop use.

Mobile devices with mobile communications abilities (e.g., smartphones) contain two mobile operating systems the main user-facing software platform is supplemented by a second low-level proprietary real-time operating system which operates the radio and other hardware. Research has shown that these low-level systems may contain a range of security vulnerabilities permitting malicious base stations to gain high levels of control over the mobile device. [89]

Mobile app

A mobile app is a computer program designed to run on a mobile device, such as a smartphone. The term "app" is a short-form of the term "software application".

Application stores

The introduction of Apple's App Store for the iPhone and iPod Touch in July 2008 popularized manufacturer-hosted online distribution for third-party applications (software and computer programs) focused on a single platform. There are a huge variety of apps, including video games, music products and business tools. Up until that point, smartphone application distribution depended on third-party sources providing applications for multiple platforms, such as GetJar, Handango, Handmark, and PocketGear. Following the success of the App Store, other smartphone manufacturers launched application stores, such as Google's Android Market (later renamed to the Google Play Store) and RIM's BlackBerry App World and Android-related app stores like F-Droid. In February 2014, 93% of mobile developers were targeting smartphones first for mobile app development. [90]

Sales

Since 1996, smartphone shipments have had positive growth. In November 2011, 27% of all photographs created were taken with camera-equipped smartphones. [91] In September 2012, a study concluded that 4 out of 5 smartphone owners use the device to shop online. [92] Global smartphone sales surpassed the sales figures for feature phones in early 2013. [3] Worldwide shipments of smartphones topped 1 billion units in 2013, up 38% from 2012's 725 million, while comprising a 55% share of the mobile phone market in 2013, up from 42% in 2012. [93] In Q1 2016 for the first time the shipments dropped by 3 percent year on year. The situation was caused by the maturing China market. [94]

By manufacturer

Worldwide smartphones producers market share
SourceDate Samsung Huawei Apple Inc. Xiaomi Oppo OthersReference
Gartner Q2 201819.3%13.3%11.9%8.8%7.6%39.0% [95]
IDC Q2 201821.0%15.9%12.1%9.5%8.6%32.9% [96]

In 2011, Samsung had the highest shipment market share worldwide, followed by Apple. In 2013, Samsung had 31.3% market share, a slight increase from 30.3% in 2012, while Apple was at 15.3%, a decrease from 18.7% in 2012. Huawei, LG and Lenovo were at about 5% each, significantly better than 2012 figures, while others had about 40%, the same as the previous years figure. Only Apple lost market share, although their shipment volume still increased by 12.9%; the rest had significant increases in shipment volumes of 36–92%. [97] In Q1 2014, Samsung had a 31% share and Apple had 16%. [98] In Q4 2014, Apple had a 20.4% share and Samsung had 19.9%. [99] In Q2 2016, Samsung had a 22.3% share and Apple had 12.9%. [95] In Q1 2017, IDC reported that Samsung was first placed, with 80 million units, followed by Apple with 50.8 million, Huawei with 34.6 million, Oppo with 25.5 million and Vivo with 22.7 million. [100]

Samsung's mobile business is half the size of Apple's, by revenue. Apple business has been increasing very rapidly over the past 4 years. [101]

By operating system

Use

Social

A 2012 University of Southern California study found that unprotected adolescent sexual activity was more common among owners of smartphones. [102] A study conducted by the Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute's (RPI) Lighting Research Center (LRC) concluded that smartphones, or any backlit devices, can seriously affect sleep cycles. [103] Some persons might become psychologically attached to smartphones resulting in anxiety when separated from the devices. [104] A "smombie" (a combination of "smartphone" and "zombie") is a walking person using a smartphone and not paying attention as they walk, possibly risking an accident in the process, an increasing social phenomenon. [105] The issue of slow-moving smartphone users led to the temporary creation of a "mobile lane" for walking in Chongqing, China. [106] The issue of distracted smartphone users led the city of Augsburg, Germany to embed pedestrian traffic lights in the pavement. [107]

Mobile banking and payment

Mobile payment system. Mobile payment 01.jpg
Mobile payment system.

In many countries, mobile phones are used to provide mobile banking services, which may include the ability to transfer cash payments by secure SMS text message. Kenya's M-PESA mobile banking service, for example, allows customers of the mobile phone operator Safaricom to hold cash balances which are recorded on their SIM cards. Cash can be deposited or withdrawn from M-PESA accounts at Safaricom retail outlets located throughout the country and can be transferred electronically from person to person and used to pay bills to companies.

Branchless banking has been successful in South Africa and the Philippines. A pilot project in Bali was launched in 2011 by the International Finance Corporation and an Indonesian bank, Bank Mandiri. [108]

Another application of mobile banking technology is Zidisha, a US-based nonprofit micro-lending platform that allows residents of developing countries to raise small business loans from Web users worldwide. Zidisha uses mobile banking for loan disbursements and repayments, transferring funds from lenders in the United States to borrowers in rural Africa who have mobile phones and can use the Internet. [109]

Mobile payments were first trialled in Finland in 1998 when two Coca-Cola vending machines in Espoo were enabled to work with SMS payments. Eventually, the idea spread and in 1999, the Philippines launched the country's first commercial mobile payments systems with mobile operators Globe and Smart.

Some mobile phones can make mobile payments via direct mobile billing schemes, or through contactless payments if the phone and the point of sale support near field communication (NFC). [110] Enabling contactless payments through NFC-equipped mobile phones requires the co-operation of manufacturers, network operators, and retail merchants. [111] [112]

While driving

A New York City driver holding two phones Hand held phones.JPG
A New York City driver holding two phones
A user consulting a mapping app on a phone Range Rover mapping app.jpg
A user consulting a mapping app on a phone

Mobile phone use while driving—including calling, text messaging, playing media, web browsing, gaming, using mapping apps or operating other phone features—is common but controversial, since it is widely considered dangerous due to what is known as distracted driving. Being distracted while operating a motor vehicle has been shown to increase the risk of accidents. In September 2010, the US National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) reported that 995 people were killed by drivers distracted by phones. In March 2011 a US insurance company, State Farm Insurance, announced the results of a study which showed 19% of drivers surveyed accessed the Internet on a smartphone while driving. [113] Many jurisdictions prohibit the use of mobile phones while driving. In Egypt, Israel, Japan, Portugal and Singapore, both handheld and hands-free calling on a mobile phone (which uses a speakerphone) is banned. In other countries including the UK and France and in many US states, only the use of calling on handheld phones is banned, while hands-free use is permitted.

A 2011 study reported that over 90% of college students surveyed text (initiate, reply or read) while driving. [114] The scientific literature on the danger of driving while sending a text message from a mobile phone, or texting while driving, is limited. A simulation study at the University of Utah found a sixfold increase in distraction-related accidents when texting. [115] Due to the complexity of smartphones that began to grow more after, this has introduced additional difficulties for law enforcement officials when attempting to distinguish one usage from another in drivers using their devices. This is more apparent in countries which ban both handheld and hands-free usage, rather than those which ban handheld use only, as officials cannot easily tell which function of the phone is being used simply by looking at the driver. This can lead to drivers being stopped for using their device illegally for a call when, in fact, they were using the device legally, for example, when using the phone's incorporated controls for car stereo, GPS or satnav.

A sign along Bellaire Boulevard in Southside Place, Texas (Greater Houston) states that using mobile phones while driving is prohibited from 7:30 am to 9:30 am and from 2:00 pm to 4:15 pm NocellphonesSouthsidePlaceTX.JPG
A sign along Bellaire Boulevard in Southside Place, Texas (Greater Houston) states that using mobile phones while driving is prohibited from 7:30 am to 9:30 am and from 2:00 pm to 4:15 pm

A 2010 study reviewed the incidence of phone use while cycling and its effects on behavior and safety. [116] In 2013 a national survey in the US reported the number of drivers who reported using their phones to access the Internet while driving had risen to nearly one of four. [117] A study conducted by the University of Vienna examined approaches for reducing inappropriate and problematic use of mobile phones, such as using phones while driving. [118]

Accidents involving a driver being distracted by being in a call on a phone have begun to be prosecuted as negligence similar to speeding. In the United Kingdom, from 27 February 2007, motorists who are caught using a handheld phone while driving will have three penalty points added to their license in addition to the fine of £60. [119] This increase was introduced to try to stem the increase in drivers ignoring the law. [120] Japan prohibits all use of phones while driving, including use of hands-free devices. New Zealand has banned handheld phone use since 1 November 2009. Many states in the United States have banned text messaging on phones while driving. Illinois became the 17th American state to enforce this law. [121] As of July 2010, 30 states had banned texting while driving, with Kentucky becoming the most recent addition on July 15. [122]

Public Health Law Research maintains a list of distracted driving laws in the United States. This database of laws provides a comprehensive view of the provisions of laws that restrict the use of mobile devices while driving for all 50 states and the District of Columbia between 1992, when first law was passed through December 1, 2010. The dataset contains information on 22 dichotomous, continuous or categorical variables including, for example, activities regulated (e.g., texting versus talking, hands-free versus handheld calls, web browsing, gaming), targeted populations, and exemptions. [123]

A "patent war" between Samsung and Apple started when the latter claimed that the original Galaxy S Android phone copied the interfaceand possibly the hardwareof Apple's iOS for the iPhone 3GS. There was also smartphone patents licensing and litigation involving Sony Mobile, Google, Apple Inc., Samsung, Microsoft, Nokia, Motorola, HTC, Huawei and ZTE, among others. The conflict is part of the wider "patent wars" between multinational technology and software corporations. To secure and increase market share, companies granted a patent can sue to prevent competitors from using the methods the patent covers. Since the 2010s the number of lawsuits, counter-suits, and trade complaints based on patents and designs in the market for smartphones, and devices based on smartphone OSes such as Android and iOS, has increased significantly. Initial suits, countersuits, rulings, license agreements, and other major events began in 2009 as the smartphone market stated to grow more rapidly by 2012.

Facsimile

Some apps allows for sending and receiving facsimile (Fax), over a smartphone, including facsimile data (composed of raster bi-level graphics) generated directly and digitally from document and image file formats.

Medical

With the rise in number of mobile medical apps in the market place, government regulatory agencies raised concerns on the safety of the use of such applications. These concerns were transformed into regulation initiatives worldwide with the aim of safeguarding users from untrusted medical advice. [124]

Security

Smartphone malware is easily distributed through an insecure app store. [125] [126] Often, malware is hidden in pirated versions of legitimate apps, which are then distributed through third-party app stores. [127] [128] Malware risk also comes from what is known as an "update attack", where a legitimate application is later changed to include a malware component, which users then install when they are notified that the app has been updated. [129] As well, one out of three robberies in 2012 in the United States involved the theft of a mobile phone. An online petition has urged smartphone makers to install kill switches in their devices. [130] In 2014, Apple's "Find my iPhone" and Google's "Android Device Manager" can locate, disable, and wipe the data from phones that have been lost or stolen. With BlackBerry Protect in OS version 10.3.2, devices can be rendered unrecoverable to even BlackBerry's own Operating System recovery tools if incorrectly authenticated or dissociated from their account. [131]

Leaked documents published by WikiLeaks, codenamed Vault 7 and dated from 2013–2016, detail the capabilities of the United States Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) to perform electronic surveillance and cyber warfare, including the ability to compromise the operating systems of most smartphones (including iOS and Android). [132] [133]

Guidelines for mobile device security were issued by NIST [134] and many other organizations. For conducting a private, in-person meeting, at least one site recommends that the user switch the smartphone off and disconnect the battery. [135]

Sleep

Using smartphones late at night can disturb sleep, due to the blue light and brightly lit screen, which affects melatonin levels and sleep cycles. In an effort to alleviate these issues, several apps that change the color temperature of a screen to a warmer hue based on the time of day to reduce the amount of blue light generated have been developed for Android, while iOS 9.3 integrated similar, system-level functionality known as "Night Shift". Amazon released a feature known as "blue shade" in their Fire OS "Bellini" 5.0 and later. It has also been theorized that for some users, addicted use of their phones, especially before they go to bed, can result in "ego depletion". Many people also use their phones as alarm clocks, which can also lead to loss of sleep. [136] [137] [138] [139] [140]

Bokeh cameras

Pocket cameras have difficulty producing bokeh in images, but nowadays, some smartphones have dual-lens cameras that produce the bokeh effect easily, and can even rearrange the level of bokeh after shooting. The iPhone 7 Plus debuted with a dual-lens camera in the back of the smartphone. [141] More advanced smartphones may come with 'quad cameras', or two dual-lens cameras such as the Honor 9 Lite smartphone. The back and front of the smartphone each have a 13MP main lens and a 2MP lens for capturing depth information. [142] The Evercoss U50A Max smartphone has 4 cameras, and costs less than $100. [143]

Huawei P20 Pro smartphone with triple lenses in the back of the smartphone has been launched as bokeh camera smartphone with optical zoom. First lens has 40MP RGB, second lens has 20MP monochrome and third lens has 8MP RGB telephoto 3x. The zoom can be enhanced to 5x with combination of the optical zoom and megapixel lens 40MP RGB to produce undeteriorated (optical+digital) zoom or digital zoom without loss of quality. [144]

See also

Related Research Articles

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Android (operating system) Free and open-source operating system for mobile devices, developed by Google

Android is a mobile operating system developed by Google. It is based on a modified version of the Linux kernel and other open source software, and is designed primarily for touchscreen mobile devices such as smartphones and tablets. In addition, Google has further developed Android TV for televisions, Android Auto for cars, and Wear OS for wrist watches, each with a specialized user interface. Variants of Android are also used on game consoles, digital cameras, PCs and other electronics.

Smartwatch computerized wristwatch

A smartwatch is a wearable computer in the form of a wristwatch; modern smartwatches provide a local touchscreen interface for daily use, while an associated smartphone app provides for management and telemetry. While early models could perform basic tasks, such as calculations, digital time telling, translations, and game-playing, 2010s smartwatches have more general functionality closer to smartphones, including mobile apps, a mobile operating system and WiFi/Bluetooth connectivity. Some smartwatches function as portable media players, with FM radio and playback of digital audio and video files via a Bluetooth headset. Some models, called 'watch phones', have mobile cellular functionality like making calls.

The HTC Evo Shift 4G is a smartphone developed by HTC Corporation and marketed as the concurrent/sequel to Sprint's flagship Android smartphone, running on its 4G WiMAX network. The smartphone launched on January 9, 2011.

Samsung Galaxy S III multi-touch, slate-format smartphone running the Android operating system

The Samsung Galaxy S III is a Android smartphone designed, developed, and marketed by Samsung Electronics. Launched in 2012, it had sold about 70 million units by 2015 with no recalls ever recorded.

A lock screen is a computer user interface element used by various operating systems. They regulate immediate access to a device by requiring that the user perform a certain action in order to receive access, such as entering a password, using a certain button combination, or performing a certain gesture using a device's touchscreen. While most lock functions on PC operating systems only utilize a login screen, lock screens on mobile devices often provide more functionality beyond unlocking the phone: such as notifications for emails and text messages, a date and time display, or shortcuts to certain applications.

The Samsung Galaxy Express (GT-I8730) is a smartphone made by Samsung which was launched in March 2013 in India featuring a similar design to the Galaxy S Duos but with additional features such as 4G LTE, NFC. It also features a bigger 4.5-inch screen with Super AMOLED Plus and retains all the features which the Samsung Galaxy S III phone has.

LG G2

The LG G2 is an Android smartphone developed by LG Electronics. Serving as a successor to 2012's Optimus G and the 2013 Optimus G Pro phablet, the G2 was unveiled at a press event in New York City on 7 August 2013, and first released in September 2013. The G2 is primarily distinguished by software features that LG billed would "learn" from users, a high fidelity sound system designed to produce higher quality audio, a 5.2 in (130 mm) 1080p IPS LCD screen with technology that the company claimed would improve energy efficiency and reduce the size of the bezel around it, along with the unique placement of its power and volume keys—eschewing their typical location on the edge of a smartphone by placing them on the rear below the camera lens.

Samsung Galaxy Gear Smartwatch

The Samsung Galaxy Gear is a smartwatch produced by Samsung Electronics in the Samsung Gear family of devices. Unveiled during a Samsung Unpacked event in Berlin, Germany on September 4, 2013, the device serves as a companion for all Samsung Galaxy smartphones and tablets which run Android 4.3 or newer; it was released on September 25, 2013. Originally released as an Android-based device, Samsung replaced the operating system with Tizen through the May 2014 software update.

The Samsung Galaxy Express 2 (SM-G3815) is a smartphone made by Samsung which was launched in October 2013 featuring a similar design and specifications of the Samsung Galaxy S4 Mini but with a bigger 4.5 inch screen and different cameras.

Wear OS version of Googles Android operating system for wearable devices

Wear OS, also known as Wear OS by Google and previously called Android Wear, is a version of Google's Android operating system designed for smartwatches and other wearables. By pairing with mobile phones running Android version 4.3 or newer, or iOS version 8.2 or newer with limited support from Google's pairing application, Wear OS integrates Google Assistant technology and mobile notifications into a smartwatch form factor.

Samsung Galaxy S6 Android smartphone

The Samsung Galaxy S6, Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge, and Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge+ are Android smartphones manufactured and marketed by Samsung Electronics. The S6 line serves as a successor to the Galaxy S5. The S6 and S6 Edge smartphones were officially unveiled in the first "Samsung Unpacked 2015" event at the Mobile World Congress on March 1 2015, while the bigger S6 Edge+ was officially unveiled together with the Samsung Galaxy Note 5 in the second "Samsung Unpacked 2015" event at New York on August 13 2015. Alongside the S6, Samsung also unveiled the S6 Edge, a variant whose screen is wrapped along the sides of the device; the curvature is usable for several additional features. The Galaxy S6 and S6 Edge were first released on April 10 2015 while the S6 Edge+ was released on August 21 2015.

LG G5 smartphone

The LG G5 is an Android smartphone developed by LG Electronics as part of the LG G series. It was announced during Mobile World Congress as the successor to the 2015 LG G4. The G5 is distinguished from its predecessors by its aluminum chassis and a focus on modularity; the lower housing which contains the battery can be slid from the bottom of the device, and replaced by alternative add-on modules that provide additional functions, such as a camera grip or a high-fidelity audio module with DAC. A lower-spec variation, dubbed the LG G5 SE, is sold in selected markets.

Samsung Galaxy S7 Android Smartphone

Samsung Galaxy S7, Samsung Galaxy S7 Edge and Samsung Galaxy S7 Active are Android smartphones manufactured and marketed by Samsung Electronics. The S7 series serves as the successor to the Galaxy S6, S6 Edge, S6 Edge+ and S6 Active released in 2015. The S7 and S7 Edge were officially unveiled on 21 February 2016 during a Samsung press conference at Mobile World Congress, with a European and North American release on 11 March 2016. The S7 Active was unveiled on 4 June 2016, and released on AT&T in the United States on 10 June 2016.

Samsung Galaxy Note 7 Android phablet smartphone that was produced and marketed by Samsung Electronics

The Samsung Galaxy Note 7 is a now-discontinued Android phablet smartphone that was produced and marketed by Samsung Electronics. Unveiled on 2 August 2016, it was officially released on 19 August 2016 as a successor to the Galaxy Note 5. It was Samsung's first phone with a symmetrical connector and the last phone in the Galaxy Note Series to have a home button. Although it is the sixth main device in the Galaxy Note series, Samsung branded its series number as "7" instead of "6", so that consumers would not perceive it as being inferior to the flagship Samsung Galaxy S7.

Samsung Experience

Samsung Experience is an Android-based custom mobile operating system designed by Samsung for its Galaxy devices. It was introduced in late 2016 on a beta build based on Android Nougat for the Galaxy S7, succeeding TouchWiz.

Samsung Galaxy S9 Android smartphone

The Samsung Galaxy S9 and Samsung Galaxy S9+ are Android smartphones produced by Samsung Electronics as part of the Samsung Galaxy S series. The devices were revealed at the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona on 25 February 2018, as the successors to the Samsung Galaxy S8 and S8+.

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