You may think of your mobile device as your direct connection to all things important, but do you know it could actually be your secret weapon in losing weight, avoiding risky sexual situations or dodging the next viral outbreak or winter storm?
It’s stating the obvious to say mobile devices are pervasive in our society. After all, when was the last time you saw someone glued to one? (Exactly!)
In a recent United Kingdom survey, 37 percent of adults admitted to being “highly addicted” to their smartphone. In a modern civilization that’s understandable. I mean, what’s not to love?
Today’s smartphone and tablet technology not only burrs the line between work and social networking, but also speaks to our inner-geeky need for volumes of information or be entertained anywhere there is a broadband or WIFI connection.
The proof is the surge in data traffic on U.S. wireless networks in 2011, which more than doubled from the previous year. During that same period the number of users increased 67 percent to 95.8 million, reports The CTIA, an international trade group for wireless telecommunications.
For example, in the United States the number of wireless connections now exceeds the total population, says CTIA. Industry analysts credit the surge to the growing public acceptance of smartphones, tablets and machine-to-machine devices with embedded wireless connections and the increase in people with multiple devices.
Perhaps equally important, mobile device users cut cross all socioeconomic groups and geographical boundaries. Surprisingly, mobile devices are more affordable than computers, particularly in poor and remote communities where few landlines exist and electricity can be hard to maintain.
Is there any wonder then, why public health experts are looking for ways to harness the power and connectivity the technology is giving each of us?
In the not-too-distant future your mobile device may well help you manage a chronic disease, remind you about doctor visits or lab work, or offer personalized health interventions for smoking cessation, sexual health, diabetes and medication management, nutrition, or increasing your physical activity.