t has a camera, a video camera, a microphone, a library, a photo and music album. The smartphone is a technological smorgasbord.
Add some apps and your smartphone turns into a GPS, a torchlight, a magnifying glass. Even better, connected to a wireless network, it allows you to surf the web, send texts, emails and of course, make phone calls.
What you may not know, is that its place at the center of today’s telecommunications, the smartphone could also play a major role in tomorrow’s health services.
“With wireless networks, Internet, connectivity, bandwidth capacities, the huge popularity of smartphones, cloud computing – capable of storing enormous volumes of data – we have a convergence of tools that can be applied to medicine,” explains Professor Eric Topol, a cardiologist specialized in genomics and director of the Scripps Transnational Science Institute in La Jolla, California. “We are in the middle of a digital revolution that will shake the world of medicine.”
Topol notes that there are six billion cell phones in the world. "That’s more than toothbrushes or toilets,” he says. The current one billion smartphones is expected to double before 2015.