The term smartphone was first coined in 1999 by the Swedish company Ericsson and is a neologism made up of the words “smart” and “telephone”. Smartphones are multifunctional devices that combine the functions of a mobile phone (telephoning, writing messages) with those of a computer (web browsing, gaming, listening to music) and other functional units, such as a camera and a GPS-System.
Smartphones have stronger hardware capabilities and extensive mobile operating systems than usual mobile phones which facilitate wider software, the internet and multimedia functionality (including music, video, cameras, and gaming), alongside the already named core phone functions.
Externally, smartphones can be recognised by the continuous, touch-sensitive screen that enables the use of the various functions in contrast to a classic keyboard of earlier mobile phones. The invention of this screen and the possibility of connecting the devices to the mobile data network or WLAN brought about the breakthrough of smartphones.