It was not that long ago when phone booths could be seen everywhere, but thanks to the Swiss Army Phone, these antiquated devices have joined the endangered species list along with a plethora of other soon-to-be outdated technology. The Swiss Army Phone, much like its knife counterpart is what smartphones of today have very plainly become. The knife originally issued for the Swiss military contains a blade, scissors, a screwdriver and a corkscrew (because the Swiss were evidently that optimistic). Its convenience replaced the need to carry each of these tools individually and at the same time, saved pocket space.
The Swiss Army Phone contains a wide variety of tools such as a video and digital camera, an entertainment system, multiple communication mediums, GPS, books, maps and a flashlight. It also has a detailed list of everyone a person has ever known and may wish to contact at some point and of course, the entirety of all knowledge ever learned and known by humankind. The Swiss Army Phone is truly a remarkable triumph of technology and science and there is humor in the fact that regardless of the massive amount of things it can do, one of its most common uses is to look at pictures of cats.
Thanks to the Swiss Army Phone, a number of poor synthetic creatures have joined the endangered species list. Not all would necessarily be given obvious consideration to join this list, although some most certainly would. Starting with one that has already been mentioned…
The pay phone has long since become an endangered species and some cities such as New York started transforming them into free Wi-Fi hot spots a couple of years ago. It is a serious upgrade, considering that these outdated phone booths were already seen as magnets for criminal activity including drug dealing and sexual activity. Despite not being seen very many places in reality, they are still very commonly seen on the television series Person of Interest where the characters often receive instructions from “the machine” via pay phones that happen to be just about everywhere.
Perhaps somewhat ironically, the Toronto Star reported last July, that there are still about 70,000 payphones in Canada. Regardless of the large number, it is still a challenge to find one around anywhere.
Much along the same lines, landline phones have also become an endangered species. In fact, two out of every five U.S. homes had gone wireless-only in the first half of the 2013 year. This does not mean that people are resorting solely on their Swiss Army Phones though. Applications such as Skype, FaceTime video and magicJack Plus are all wire-free alternatives to living comfortably.
Mounted GPS devices, which are ironically not technology that is really all that old have already joined the endangered species list. Both map applications on Swiss Army Phones plus cars already built with integrated GPS systems are responsible for this decline. Besides the convenience factor, they are also a much appreciated convenience factor when compared to the alternative of paying $70 to $300 for a mounted device.
Believe it or not, hotel rooms could be making their way into the endangered species list, although they would be on the borderline edge and it is unlikely they are in any danger of dying out anytime soon. Average hotel room prices have risen by 4.1 percent in the U.S. since 2012 up to $110.59. Swiss Army Phones while not solely responsible for a decline in hotel rooms do provide access to a variety of convenience options such as Airbnb and Vacation Rentals, which allow budget-conscious travelers to find affordable lodgings.
Telephone poles are another piece of technology, which may surprisingly be disappearing. With the explosion of cordless Swiss Army Phones and the disappearance of land lines, there is less of a need for wires and more of a need for wireless.
Finally, one more item that may be joining the endangered species list thanks to Swiss Army Phones are wallets. With the advent of Bitcoins and applications such as Google Wallet, Swiss Army Phones are becoming more and more of a convenience tool that can be used to pay at various locations. Of course, it will be a long still before garage sales are ready to accept Bitcoins off of a smartphone for payment, so do not throw out the wallet just yet.
By Jonathan Holowka