Smartphones are one of the most significant innovations in recent history.
Their hefty costs reflect the massive variety of things they’re capable of doing.
You might wonder if they’re worth the high price, and the truth is there’s hardly a better deal out there.
Smartphones aren’t a waste of money, considering the incredible value they offer for their cost. They simultaneously offer access to mobile internet and vast libraries of helpful apps. Smartphones also sport sophisticated hardware, such as powerful cameras and hotspot capabilities.
This article examines some factors affecting the monetary and practical value of smartphones.
By the end, you’ll be surprised how much versatility these devices pack.
1. Smartphones Allow You To Access the Internet
Maybe the most compelling feature of smartphones is their internet access.
You can check your email, visit websites, and shop online all from your phone.
When trying to determine how worthwhile a smartphone is to you, consider your internet usage.
If you’re not someone who regularly surfs the web, you won’t get as much use from smartphones.
After all, much of their value comes from this capability.
Still, keep in mind internet access is what makes smartphones smart!
Don’t underestimate this factor and the array of possibilities it brings. These days, you can essentially do anything and everything online.
So, the internet accessibility of smartphones is invaluable.
Their connectivity coupled with their powerful hardware means smartphones are capable of essentially anything a computer is.
Not to mention the arrival of 5G brought these devices exponentially faster download speeds.
2. Smartphones Can Download Fun and Helpful Apps
Expensive smartphones might seem like a waste at first glance. But keep in mind that they support millions upon millions of mobile apps!
Many apps are highly beneficial in day-to-day life. Uber and Lyft help you get a ride, much like taxis.
Meanwhile, Venmo allows you to transfer money to other users instantly.
Smartphones even allow you to play video games or watch your favorite movies and shows.
If you want to enjoy those things on the go, there’s no better option than smartphones.
Even better, many apps are free!
The various mobile apps undoubtedly add bonus value to smartphones. They’re also a driving force behind the devices’ rising popularity.
In fact, adult ownership of smartphones grew from 35% in 2011 to 85% in 2021.
Smartphones are undoubtedly pricey at the higher end. But older, cheaper models run most apps just as well.
3. Smartphones Make Excellent Navigation Tools
Speaking of apps, among the most useful are navigation apps.
These apps work like GPS devices. And since they’re on your phone, they save you money and space you’d otherwise use for a separate gadget.
Apps, such as Google Maps or Waze, provide guided directions to your destination.
They also detail traffic reports, adjust for road closures, and warn of speed traps.
If you have a lead foot, that last one can save you money!
This technology is also invaluable for outdoorsy people. Hikers can see where they’re on trails and assess their surroundings.
It also helps prevent campers from getting lost.
With all these features, smartphones are entirely worth the high price for frequent travelers and nature lovers.
4. Smartphones Have Many Useful Accessories
Determining if smartphones are a waste of money means considering more than the phone itself.
These devices have all sorts of extra attachments and accessories.
While these accessories bring extra cost to smartphones, they also broaden their capabilities.
Car mounts help you use your phone as a GPS while driving. And compact Bluetooth speakers allow you to DJ on the go.
Many accessories are also customizable. You can get a phone case featuring pictures of your cat or one designed to look like a chocolate bar.
Attachments add significant utility and fun to your device if you have the cash to spare.
They’re also a great reason to buy a smartphone; they help it do even more than it already does.
If you like to play around with your phone’s camera, check out this Xenvo Pro Lens Kit (available on Amazon.com).
Compatible with all smartphones, this high-quality wide-angle lens enhances your photos.
It comes with a lanyard, so you can easily take it anywhere with you!
5. Smartphone Cameras Are Impressive
Perhaps the best arguments against smartphones being a waste of money are their cameras.
Smartphones sport remarkably sophisticated cameras.
They’re increasingly the go-to option for many amateur and casual photographers.
After all, why buy and carry a DSLR when you have an HD camera in your pocket? Not to mention the pocket camera can also play Candy Crush.
That isn’t to say smartphones make perfect cameras. DSLRs are typically better for long-distance and extremely zoomed-in photos.
However, smartphones will cover most of the photographic needs you have (unless you’re a professional photographer).
Smartphones also process and share images easier than conventional cameras.
DSLRs require a separate memory card that you plug into your computer to download images.
The latest iPhone or Android, however, allows instant image sharing. You can even alter photos using various photo editing applications.
Editor’s pick: What Is the Difference Between a Smartphone and an Android?
6. You Can Enjoy Your Favorite Music Using Smartphones
If you love music, you definitely should consider getting a smartphone.
All smartphones provide numerous ways to enjoy your favorite artists.
They cover the music niche so effectively that standalone MP3 devices are essentially obsolete.
You can directly download music to your smartphone. But apps like Amazon Music and Spotify are much more popular choices.
These services offer comprehensive libraries of instantly accessible jams. You can also craft and edit custom playlists for your enjoyment.
Smartphones can help you rock out as you do chores or get extra pumped while exercising.
When it comes to enjoying music, it’s hard to find better value for the money.
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7. Smartphones Offer Convenient Video Calling
Phones have always been about connecting people.
Ever since their invention, advancements in phone technology have primarily focused on making that connection as authentic as possible.
To that end, perhaps the most groundbreaking development is video calling.
As the name suggests, video calling allows users to both hear and see each other during calls.
This is partially why most smartphones have a front-facing camera.
Video chatting existed through desktop webcams and laptops before smartphones adopted it.
However, desktop apps pale in comparison to the convenience and accessibility of smartphones.
Suppose you go to a tranquil beach to watch the sunrise, but wish you could share that moment with someone.
Through video calling, you easily can. That relative or friend who couldn’t make the trip is now right there with you, seeing what you do.
Families separated by immense distances will undoubtedly treasure this technology.
It makes staying connected with loved ones over long distances easier and more natural than ever before.
8. Smartphones Can Turn Into Mobile Hotspots
Above, I discussed how smartphones have web access anywhere there’s a broadband cellular connection.
And thanks to hotspot technology, most smartphones can also share this connection with other devices.
Mobile hotspots provide internet connection for nearby devices like laptops, tablets, and even other smartphones.
Using your phone as a hotspot (also called WiFi tethering) is situational.
You’ll ordinarily get the most value out of it in places where internet connection is scarce.
Think vacation homes, parks, and while traveling out on the road.
Some users never activate their hotspots. Others depend on them every day.
9. Smartphones Work Great as Planners
In the ’90s, many people with busy lives relied on bulky electronic organizers.
And plenty of others today still utilize notepads or sticky notes to help them stay on task.
Thankfully, smartphones now generally come with planning and calendar software pre-installed.
Using them saves you both money and the effort of keeping track of a separate physical planner.
The convenience of smartphone planners is what makes them truly special.
Since you’ll typically have your phone with you, that means you also always have your planner.
Many even include alert options to warn you when appointments are approaching.
You can also use your smartphone’s planning apps to write reminders, update grocery lists, or even keep a journal.
For anyone with frequent planning needs, smartphones are essentially the complete package.
When you consider everything they offer, smartphones are remarkable.
There’s hardly anything out there that offers so much value and convenience.
If the high cost of newer smartphones intimidates you, remember you can always buy pre-used or older models.
Though cheaper, they offer virtually all the same capabilities.