I had never realised just how connected and internet reliable we are. I knew I used the internet, whether it be on my phone, laptop or computer, on a daily basis, but to the extent of it being a part of me was quite shocking actually. It seems that as society has progressed and demands our lives to stay connected with the world, our mobile phones have become an extension of our body, with most of us carrying them during the day and 10% of Australian teens getting woken at night by a text message every night.
The advancements of the mobile phone are astounding. From the introduction of the 1st generation mobile phone (Motorolla) in 1973 to today’s digitally signaled Android with every feature you could think of, it’s hard to imagine a world without connectivity at our fingertips. These convergent technologies are larger than the sum of their individual parts. Take Skype for example. It consists of connection, dialing, the microphone and a camera for recording and speaking to others from wherever they may be in the world. With each individual technology, Skype brings them together to create a completely new and sophisticated medium for communicating a message.
I also found interesting the way industries control how we use the internet. The fact that every single thing we do on our phones, whether it be from the time it takes to load an image or the variety of apps we can choose to download, is all controlled by the manufacturer of our phone. Closed technologies or platforms are guilty of this, however open platforms, you can alter functionality – not always for the better though. Everything is a choice by them and is embedded into our device. The ideologies of locked appliances and generative platforms sets the parameters for engagement. Jonathan Zittrain states “The PC can run code from anywhere, written by anyone…The information appliance remains tethered to it’s maker’s desires” The main focus here is control over use. Access permissions on devices are ideological choices. What I did not know is how much of a difference there is between Apple’s iPhone and Android phones.
I own an LG android phone and have for almost 2 years now with not once having any issues with it. After analyzing this week’s lecture and readings, I am confident in saying I do not wish to convert to an iPhone in the near future. I like to be given the option to make choices, and although Apple’s iPhone has all the excellent features one could ever need, I prefer a more open way of decision making. Apple controls everything that comes with the iPhone-its apps (come from only the “Apple App Store” and can remove apps at its discretion) and has complete control over the platform and its content. iPhones seem to give you absolutely no control over anything on it, like your locked into Apple’s jail.
On the other hand, my android allows me to make choices. It is open and free based which allows me and any other android user access and the potential to modify its code. It allows independent app markets and rather than having a singular hardware manufacturer, android phone manufacturing is cut throat, with companies such as Samsung and LG able to produce such smartphones.
Apple’s iPhone locks your options for your own good (permission culture), with the thought that we are all too simple to make an acceptable choice, or maybe we choose to let Apple do what they do best while we get on with things that we do best.
Android allows you to take responsibility for your free choices (open culture)
What I have gained from this week’s information is that it’s all about limiting and controlling choices for the audience on what they can do with the content on their respective platform.