Personal Digital Devices

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  • Created by: Isabel N
  • Created on: 11-05-16 11:39

Mobile Phones (1)

Today's smartphones are 'multifunctional'

  • SMS - (Short Message Service) to send text messages
  • Camera - Still images and video
  • Bluetooth - Allowing data to be exchanged over short distances between devices
  • Wi-Fi - (Wireless Fidelity) to exchange data but the signal can travel long distances
  • Internet - to browse web pages and send messages via webmail
  • MP3 Player - to listen to music files
  • Touch Screen - to make it easier to use
  • 3G - allows the user access to the Internet via a mobile phone network
  • Games and Apps - Software for entertainment or practical uses
  • Predictive Text - makes it easier/faster to send SMS messages
  • GPS - (Global Positioning System) can pinpoint your location via satellite

Memory cards - used as secondary storage - they store data files on the phone. Memory card size is measured in GB. Can be SD cards (2GB storage, stores photos), or SDHC (32GB storage, stores video files).

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Mobile Phones (2)

GPS: Recievers take signal information from satellites and use it to calculate user's exact geographical location - sometimes used in cars. Smart and mobile phones have GPS recievers. Camcorders and digital cameras use them for GPS tagging.

GPS Tagging: Marking a video, photo or other media with location data. Longitude and latitude coordinates. Helps people find images and information based on its location - good for digital photo albums and location-based news.

Network Bands: To speak to someone abroad, you need to have a phone that can operate on one or more frequencies. Dual Band picks up two frequencies. Tri Band picks up three frequencies. Quad Band picks up four.

GSM (Global System for Mobile Communications): Mobile phones operate on frequency bands. Quad band will work anywhere in the world where there is a GSM service

Screen Resolution: Sharpness of images on a phone's screen depends on this. Measured in pixels. Higher the number of pixels, the better the image quality.

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Mobile Phones (3)

Phone Design: Age, physical ability, etc. can affect their use of a device. Business phones often have a QWERTY keyboard. 

Rules of Use:

  • PIN: Lock your phone with secure, personal PIN number
  • Offend: Don't send offensive texts/phone calls
  • Law: Don't drive and use your phone without a hands-free kit
  • Photo: Always ask the person's permission
  • Recycle: Help the environment - try to recycle old phone

Phones can be fashion accessories or business tools.

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Personal Computers

Desktop Computer: Heavy, designed to stay in one place and not be carried around. Good for office environment.

Laptop and Notebook: Portable, light enough to carry around in a bag. Good for business users/students.

Netbook: Smaller, for browsing the Internet wirelessly. Lower specification, so more limited use.

PDA: Touch screen, can be synced with computer.

Tablet Computer: Small computer with main features of normal PC. Touch screen as main input device. Used to wirelessly browse internet, send emails, etc. Light, portable.

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Parts of a Computer

CPU - Central Processing Unit - Processes calculations. Speed measured in GHz

Hard Drive: Main storage, software and data stored on it. Size measured in GB/TB

Memory: RAM (Random Access Memory) - temporary (volatile) and data can be lost if computer fails/is switched off without saving

CD/DVD Drive: Allows use to install applications, play music, watch films, etc.

USB Ports: Plug other storage devices into these.

Wireless: Allows user to connect to internet without cables. Signal may not always be strong enough. Cable offers stronger, more stable connection.

Graphics Card: Allows system to display high quality images, video or games

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A peripheral is a device that can be plugged into, or linked wirelessly to a computer. E.g. mouse, laser printer, scanner, keyboard, digital camera.

Input Devices: Allow user to enter data into computer.

Output Devices: Allow user to view, hear or print processed data.

Storage Devices: Allow user to store data so it can be used again.

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Cameras and Camcorders


  • Can shoot in normal mode or HD, can also take still images
  • Optical or Digital Zoom, night vision
  • Image stabiliser mode (no shake), LCD screen
  • Own internal hard drive/memory card
  • Connectivity - download straight to PC, GPS Tagging
  • Lightweight, portable

Digital Cameras

  • Takes still images and video
  • Some have LCD viewing panel, GPS built in, ability to edit images
  • Most have zoom feature, connectivity - downloads straight to PC, store images on memory card
  • Compact cameras - very small and lighweight
  • DSLR cameras - bigger, but with more features and settings
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Games Consoles

Games console - interactive games computer. Computer games can be played on :

  • Standard games console (larger, not portable)
  • Hand-held console (smaller, portable)
  • Computer (offline and online gaming)
  • Hands-free console (uses sensor system to detect movement)

Consoles are easier to set up and use, and are less expensive than computers. Not portable, and cannot be upgraded.

Using a games console may lead to RSI, or strained tendons in wrist and arm through overuse

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Navigation Aids (SatNavs)

  • Designed to guide people to a destination using GPS.
  • Display map information on small screen and can recieve and display real-time traffic information.
  • Can be connected to PC to update mapping software.
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