Cell phones have come a long way
The man recognized as the inventor of the cell phone is not in love with the elaborate descendants of the chunky device he first used on a New York City street in 1973. Martin Cooper says he used the phone created by his team at Motorola to call the head of cellular programming at rival AT&T, which was focusing on car phones."I must tell you as much as we were dreamers, we never imagined that all these things could be combined into one, and I'm really not so sure that it's a great thing," Cooper said in a recent interview with CNN. "Phones have gotten so complicated, so hard to use, that you wonder if this is designed for real people or for engineers."Cooper and his wife created the Jitterbug, a simple cell phone marketed to seniors.I like Cooper's take on the realm of Apple iPhones, Research In Motion BlackBerrys, and phones built on the Android platform developed from a project led by Google. He's not hyping all the things a new device can do, or fantasizing about all the things it should be able to do or might be able to do when the company sells the next version.
There are still some people put off by the zinging pace of technology, although that might be an age thing. I know people who won't use self-checkouts because they seem too complicated. But kids today will probably grow up with brains wired to expect and easily adapt to changing gadgets. They'll have the confidence that comes with experience.
Will there come a day -- soon (?) -- when no one desires a simplified cell phone like the Jitterbug? Will smartphones eventually need larger buttons to accomodate aging eyes?