Mobile media refers to communication technologies that provide access to other people, information, and/or content, while the user is free to move about. Mobile media (e.g., smartphones) are similar to portable media (e.g., laptop computers) in that both are wireless and both can be carried from place to place. However, during moments of use portable media tether individuals to places with needed infrastructure, such as surfaces and networks to log onto. Mobile media characteristically support the possibility of connecting while users are physically in transition—not just in places of destination but between and beyond them. This entry provides a brief history of mobile media and then examines mobile phones, which have unprecedented adoption rates and unique social consequences, from the macrolevel of society to the ...

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