The Purpose of the Cell Phone

By Noel Shankel

Cellphone technology first got underway in 1843, when an analytical chemist named Michael Faraday began researching space to see if it could conduct electricity. Flash forward to 2011, and the cellphone has become a part of our daily lives. Much more than just a phone, the cellphone continues to revolutionize the way we communicate with each other.

Super Communication

The cellphone's main purpose is to keep people connected, regardless of the distance that separates them. Cellphones, much like traditional phones, allow you to place and receive calls. Unlike traditional phones--such as payphones or landlines--the cellphone is mobile, allowing you to place a call while on the move as long as you have battery life. Once the cellphone battery dies, the device needs to be recharged. Charges can be plugged into any outlet and are portable as well. Antennas, transmitters and receivers have been mounted around the world to create a cellular network, allowing cellphones to operate. These are often referred to as cell towers.

More Than Talk

Call-waiting, built-in answering machines and three-way calling where some of the added features traditional phones offered. Cellphones have so many added features that they can hardly be called phones anymore. For example, many modern cellphones can be equipped with the Internet, allowing users to browse the web or check their email accounts on the go. Cameras have been built-in to cellphones, allowing users to capture memories and send them to friends. Video game enthusiasts can enjoy gaming on a cellphone. Cellphones have altered the way we communicate, with many users sending text messages instead of placing calls. Text messaging is ideal when you need to send a quick piece of information. However, these added features are determined by the type of cellphone you purchase, and the type of plan you establish with the cellphone company. Make sure to read your contract carefully, before signing up for a cellphone plan.


The cellphone allows anyone in an emergency to contact the help they desire immediately. Those who travel long distances should always have a fully charged cellphone on hand, in case of emergency. In Singapore, a cellphone developer has created the EPI Life mobile phone, which has the ability to take your pulse and summon an ambulance for you if need be. A built-in receptor checks the pulse when you apply finger pressure to it. The results are then sent to a medical call center which operates 24 hours per day. The EPI Life has an estimated starting price of $700, as of 2011.


The cellphone acts as a library for all of your most important contacts. Gone are the days of writing down the phone numbers of everyone you know on a sheet of paper. These numbers can now be stored within the cellphone and added to a contact list. Stored numbers can be deleted or altered in seconds. The contact list--which you create--includes the names and numbers of those you know. However, if the cellphone is lost or damaged, those contacts cannot be retrieved. Having contact information stored elsewhere may still be a good idea after all.