Mobile Distractions...

Time was, travelling to work on public transport, you’d look around and observe a sea of newspapers or the latest bestselling novel, their readers engrossed in their own private distraction. Look around a train or bus these days, however, and the fluttering of pages is largely gone. You’ll more likely see a plethora of electronic gadgets shining into their owners’ eyes. So what is everyone so intently glued to on their commute?
The choices for mobile entertainment have never been more diverse and numerous. Whether you’re knocking down those thieving pigs in Angry Birds, having a bit of a flutter for some extra cash after choosing the best casinos at or simply browsing your iTunes library for the best musical accompaniment to your journey, there are literally hundreds of options to browse before you even get to work. You can still read the newspaper or the latest bestseller, but the chances are they’ll now be in digital form on Kindle or iPad, complete with accompanying videos, links and options to browse or purchase more content. The future really is here and the technology is showing no signs of slowing down.
With high-speed broadband now being rolled out onto many train routes, even the speed with which you can connect to the online community is vastly improving. Gone are the days of clunky connections and frustrating download times; travellers are now able to choose to stream movies from YouTube, Netflix and LoveFilm onto their mobile device, or catch up with the TV show they missed last night. With graphics and picture quality now firmly into high definition, the train carriage can become your own private cinema – just don’t forget those headphones.
If you’re on your way to an interview or a meeting but aren’t sure of the route, programs such as Google Earth and the built-in GPS system on most phones can guide you right to the doorstep of your destination, or familiarise you with how a place looks before you arrive, even suggest places of interest you may not have thought of. The daily commute is many people’s chance to grab an extra half an hour or so of alone time before reaching work. Another way to pass the time could be to secretly snap sleeping commuters with the camera app on your phone and hashtag them in one of the #sleepclub communities on Instagram… although you might want to be a bit more careful about that one. Make sure your model doesn’t wake up!
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