As a 20 year old junior in college, communication technology has become a large part of my life in many different ways. I would not consider myself to be someone who always needs to have the newest version of a device, but simply something that is enough to efficiently keep up with the types of interactions and communicating that I enjoy. I own an iPhone 5, a MacBook (which is a couple years old), and, of course, watch my family’s TV a few times a week. I have noticed more recently that my iPhone has become increasingly the primary communication technology that I use. This is largely in part because my use of my computer, TV, and other devices has decreased since I spend much more time at school, work, or out with friends instead of at home. The primary thing for which I use my phone is probably Twitter. After that, I use it for texting, making notes, watching videos or TV shows, listening to music, and, yes, sometimes making calls. Overall, I believe devices such as my iPhone have a positive impact. Especially for myself, since I work a job in medical records which is oftentimes tedious and almost always passive, I can use it in the background to keep myself entertained (and awake). However, it does take practice to keep communication technologies from becoming a larger obsession in my life than they ought.
My prediction is that radio, at least as we have known it, is going to die out in the not too far distant future. I listen to the radio occasionally (usually just when I’m in a hurry and don’t hook my iPhone up to my car’s stereo). However, for the most part, people opt for listening to their music in the car. Whether it is from their MP3 player, iPhone, or maybe even a CD. Most people, at least in my generation, want what they want – and they want it immediately. Therefore, radio as we know it, with commercials, DJ personalities, and a variety of songs that the listener may or may not like, is simply not a preference shared by most young people. I don’t think that radio is going to die altogether. Instead I think that it will become increasingly used through the medium of the internet. This is already happening both with sites like Pandora, which originated online, and most regular AM and FM radio stations stream their broadcasts over the web, as well. The internet has become the medium through which most other communication technologies are not available and used popularly, from steaming TV shows, movies, instant messaging, video calling, or even making “phone” calls over the web. I am sure that as time goes on and the internet is incorporated into more devices, including cars, that the radio will very soon be something that is used very much, but it will look very different. This will probably consist of there being less jobs for DJ personalities and more ways in which listeners will be able to immediately gratify their musical tastes and desires.