We all know intellectually that the mobile phone has revolutionized Americans’ daily lives. The changes have accumulated so gradually, however, that sometimes taking a step back is necessary to appreciate the enormity of the shift.
For one thing, the “phone” portion of the “mobile phone” is clearly on borrowed time. The voice capabilities of these devices in our pockets have already become a quaint afterthought. It’s been over a decade since texts surpassed audio calls as the main driver of cellular network traffic. Add streaming and apps to the mix and you’ve got an entirely different value proposition than the “portable” communications handsets once tethered to automobiles.