Almost every element of 21st-century living is influenced by technology, from mobility safety and convenience to food but also healthcare availability, sociability, and performance. The impact of the internet has made it easy to create worldwide communities and exchange ideas. On the other side, overuse of some technologies has been related to a loss in personal wellbeing, increasing social divisiveness, and privacy violations.
Every day, we take technology for granted, even when it is instantly delivering us the latest news, making our cappuccino, or connecting us with a loved one halfway across the country (or even the world).
Which recent innovations are the ones that we truly couldn’t imagine living without? Is the coronavirus pandemic making us more reliant on technology, or has it helped us overcome the year’s challenges?
We look at the seven most significant ways that technology has impacted our lives in recent years.
Communication has improved.
“Come here Watson, I need to see you,” Alexander Graham Bell said over his groundbreaking invention in 1876, and it’s fair to say that the faithful telephone has had a wonderful run. Bell had hoped that there would be “one in every town.” Of course, he was correct; nowadays, everyone has one in their pocket. However, technological advancements have resulted in the classic voice call being phased out in favor of texting and social media as a means of communication.
Video calling is another medium that has grown in popularity in recent years. It’s not very novel – the notion has been around for about as long as Bell’s telephone – but the revolution of high-speed internet at reasonable rates means that sending and receiving the quantities of data required for a video conversation is now simple.
While video calling has quietly crept into daily life over the last decade, the current epidemic has pushed it over the edge and ensured its future as every day means to remain in contact.
According to one survey, Americans spent six and a half hours each day online in 2019 – a figure that is sure to have risen since the lockdowns began.
Shopping?It’s completed on Amazon. Getting together with old friends? FaceTime, Snapchat, or email are the options. Do you want to be entertained? Online gaming or Netflix. Research? Go to Google. Almost every aspect of our daily lives can now be catered for online, thus it appears that our time spent online will only rise.
While having access to everything online provides us with amazing ease, it has also left us susceptible. Every action we do online is tracked, and we leave digital traces wherever we go. Hackers and fraudsters are well aware of this and strive hard to take advantage of it for financial benefit.
Of course, technology, like everything else, has provided us with the means to defend ourselves and assure our safety as our lives shift online. This is even more important in 2022 because many of us are not just surfing for personal purposes, but also accessing shared business networks from our own homes.
The password manager is one piece of technology that will assist keep your data protected. A password manager will safeguard your old passwords, recommend new and secure ones, and in some circumstances, even monitor the web to ensure that your personal information is not stolen. Not only that, but it will eliminate the constant anxiety that we all have about forgetting one of our many, many passwords. If you don’t have one, now is the time to get one; additionally, with some of the top applications only costing a few dollars per month, it’s a terrific low-cost option for increased protection.
The Virtual Private Network is another significant security innovation (VPN). A VPN will allow you to circumvent your internet service provider and conceal your digital fingerprints. Nobody will be able to see the stuff you’re browsing, making you far less vulnerable to hackers. You may also utilize public Wi-Fi accounts with more assurance. Many enterprises, as well as private users, have recently adopted them. What is our recommendation? Surfshark. It has a lot of features but is also quite easy to use, which is why it scored so high in our VPN head-to-head comparison.
Finally, there’s anti-virus software, which acts as fantastic protection against all the nasties lurking on the internet, hoping to catch us off guard. This includes ransomware and malware, which are often meant to steal money from victims. Nobody is immune, from people to governments, and decent antivirus software is an excellent method to detect and quarantine such activities before they cause damage.
Improved Information Access
It takes little more than a couple of clicks these days to find out something. Many of us don’t even need to depart from our current location; simply pick out your phone and start Googling, or ask your smart home assistant.
It may seem like a long time ago, but it wasn’t so long ago that you had to travel to the library to get more in-depth knowledge on a subject if it was even accessible at all. Now, thanks to technological improvements, you can discover hundreds of thousands of online pages dedicated to almost everything you can think of, from “crochet patterns” (Google returns 129,000,000 hits) to “Roman history” (1,360,000,000 results).
It’s a cliche, but there’s an app for everything, and they’ve rendered many other mediums all but useless for many of us. Take GPS, for example: if you want to know how to travel someplace, you just open an app like Google Maps and select the best route, which includes instructions as well as satellite imagery. There are also corporate apps that automatically route trucks while also providing traffic, weather, safety, and legal information. App technology has also made it much easier for us to learn, date, eat, and do practically everything else we can think of.
Not to be neglected are the physical devices on which all of these apps operate. For security reasons, the apps have bot detection technology to avoid any kind of issue. Over the last decade, the smartphone has grown at an exponential rate, and daily online searches on mobile devices now surpass those on laptop or desktop computers. Every year, without fail, advancements are made to portable devices.
The mobile phone has beyond its basic role as a telephone (to talk to people) and has evolved into our pocket-sized link to the internet world.
Improved Health Tracking
Another technological development has been the growth of fitness gadgets. While we’ve been utilizing technology to help us keep fit for years, we’ve never been able to do it so scientifically, with real-time feedback and recommendations from gadgets that can track our exercises as we perform them.
Look no further than Apple, whose Apple Watch is widely marketed as a fitness product, to see how committed we are to the fitness tech business. In 2019, the firm sold 31 million of them, making it the world’s most popular watch brand, considerably exceeding conventional names like Rolex and Omega.
So, what exactly can a fitness watch do? We’ve come a long way from the days when your “sports watch” could just record your lap time. We can now track and monitor our heartbeats and blood pressure, as well as track and monitor our workout routines and sleeping patterns. If you want to buy one this year, Tech. co has evaluated and compared some of the finest fitness watches on the market, including FitBit, Apple Watch, and Garmin Forerunner, to identify the best features and price. Besides this, there are many new home devices that make your life easier. For example, Alexa Homes, Google Devices, Air Filters etc.
Conclusion: Technology’s Influence
So there you have it: seven spectacular ways that technology has positively changed our daily lives. Of course, technology never sleeps, and you can guarantee that some of the devices and services we’ve discussed here will be obsolete before long – in many cases, their next incarnation is currently being worked on in a lab somewhere.
Regardless, there is no doubt that technology has had and will continue to have a significant influence on our lives.