Mobile phones have become the essential gadget for the 21st century. Nowadays with smartphones increasing in popularity people seem to be becoming dependant on their mobiles for everything.
It’s not uncommon to hear people say that they couldn’t live without their mobile. Most people say it metaphorically but here are four heartwarming stories where that may be close to the truth.
Comedian given a voice
Warning: Video contains strong language
Comedy is a notoriously difficult business. Hundreds of hopefuls never manage to get even a laugh never mind a career. It’s a tough job on it’s own, it’s even more difficult when you don’t have a voice. This was the situation Lee Ridley, who goes by the stage name Lost Voice Guy, faced.
Lee has cerebral palsy and can only speak through text-to-speech software. But this didn’t put him of his dream of being a comedian and in January 2012 he got up on stage and delivered his routine with the help of the Speak It app for iPad. The crowd loved him. Since his initial success he’s gone on to get endorsements from famed comedians such as Ross Noble and Matt Lucas as well as more gigs across the country.
Words with Friends saves life
Words with Friends is an iPhone, android and Facebook game similar to scrabble where you play against another player to write words and gain points. It’s a great way to have fun, meet new people and, in the case of one couple, save someone’s life.
Dr. Larry Legler and his wife Beth, from the U.S.A., met Simon and Georgie Fletcher, from Australia, through Words With Friends. They quickly struck up a strong relationship through the game and became friends. After a few months of playing together Georgie started to tell Beth about the health problems her husband Simon had been having. Georgie and Simon had been ignoring them largely but when Beth told her husband Larry he advised them to immediately go to hospital.
It turned out that Simon had a 99% blockage near his heart and that had he not been told to go to the hospital he would most likely have died. Fortunately, Simon had an operation, got fixed up and the two couples got back to playing the game they loved.
Man treated wounds with iPhone app
After the devastating 2010 Haiti earthquake mobile phones were a crucial part in rebuilding the country. People across the world texted in donations, amassing over £28 million, and saved hundreds of lives. This wasn’t the only good that phones did during the disaster though.
During the earthquake Dan Woolley, an American filmmaker, was crushed by falling rubble of his hotel. Trapped, he took refuge in an lift shaft and fearing the worst, wrote his final goodbyes to his wife and kids. He had suffered a deep cut on his head and had broken his leg. Since he had no medical experience, he turned to the only expert on hand – his iPhone. Using the phone’s light and a first-aid app, he created a tourniquet for his leg and bandaged up his head.
Dan was still at risk of going into shock though and had he fallen asleep, he may never have woken up. Fortunately, the app warned him of this and he set up an alarm every 20 minutes to keep himself awake. After 65 hours trapped he was finally rescued, and he owes his life to his iPhone.
Colour brought to blind man’s life
When it comes to technology many companies seem to forget about how and if blind people will be able to use their products. Fortunately, the iPhone isn’t one of these products. In fact it can do amazing things for the blind, as Austin Seraphin found out.
Austin has been blind from birth, only being able to see dark blurs. When he bought an iPhone he was overjoyed with all the accessibility options and quickly became a fan. It’s most impressive use came after he downloaded the Color Identifier app, which uses the iPhone camera to identify and read colours aloud. For the first time Austin was able to know that his flowers were blue and his pumpkins a vibrant orange. It changed how he perceived the world and gave it colour.
It’s amazing to consider that five years ago few of us would even have heard of apps, never mind be using them. In those five years over 500,000 have been added to Apple’s app store alone. In the next few years that number is going to increase and there are going to be a lot more stories of how they have changed and even saved people’s lives.