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A Whole New World, Brought to Us by Gizmos and Gadgets

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I'm Alex Villarreal with the VOA Special English Technology Report, from |

Today we tell about some of the top technology developments of the last ten years. The technological revolution is changing the way we work and play. Mobile phones became smartphones, with abilities like computers. Many people started reading books on electronic readers. Televisions became high-definition and the screens became flat. Digital music players got smaller in size but large enough for people to download their entire music collections. 

Worldwide broadband subscriptions passed five hundred million. And, at least two billion people were expected to be online by the end of two thousand ten. Stephen Baker is the vice president of industry analysis for the consumer electronics market research group NPD. He says the technological developments of the twenty-first century have brought about some historic advances in consumer electronics. He said ten years ago might as well be a hundred years. If you look back at the way people interacted with electronics in two thousand and the way they interact with them today, there is no comparison. Ten years ago there were no flat panel televisions.

There were no mobile web devices or smartphones. There were no e-book readers. And very few people had notebook computers.Bruce Bachenheimer is with the MIT Enterprise Forum in New York City. He is also the director of entrepreneurship at Pace University. He talked about what he believes are the most important technological developments of the twenty-first century. They are mobile computing, digital media content, broadband, social media platforms and user-generated content. 

Also, digital photography and global positioning systems for consumers. Mr. Bachenheimer says all of these things have worked together to revolutionize technology. And, he says the technology is constantly changing, faster than at any other time in history. He said telephones had not changed for three or four decades. They could be on a wall or on a table top. 

But now cell phone technology is changing every year. He asked: "How many people have a cell phone that is more than a year or two old?"

For VOA Special English I'm Alex Villarreal. You can learn more about technology on our website, And you can follow us on Facebook, Twitter and iTunes at VOA Learning English. 

(Adapted from a radio program broadcast 27Dec2011)


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