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9 Uncommon Smartphone Pastimes 

Photo: Daniel Romero

Smartphones have come a long way over the last decade. Today, you can do, find and see just about anything with your mobile phone.

Of course, most people are familiar with the usual smartphone pastimes: texting, talking, video chatting and taking selfies. But there are other pastimes that aren’t as common and just as fun or useful.

Here are nine uncommon smartphone pastimes to try.


1. Video Editing

When most people think of video editing, they envision elaborate setups with dual monitors and expensive equipment. But you can edit and publish videos right from your smartphone. In fact, many smartphones have advanced cameras that can record video in 4K.

In fact, there are some really great video editing apps for the iPhone. People upload their videos to YouTube, TikTok, Instagram or just share them with friends.

For many people, creating videos is a fun pastime that gives them an outlet for their creativity.


2. Audio Production

Smartphones can do a lot of things, including recording audio. There are many free and premium apps out there that allow you to record high-quality audio that you can use to create:

  • Podcasts
  • Songs
  • Audio notes

The mic quality of many smartphones is good enough for podcasting and other uses. So, if you’re looking for a creative pastime that doesn’t involve video content, audio recording with your smartphone may be a great option.


3. Online Gambling

Did you know that you can gamble online right from your smartphone? Better yet, there are casinos where you can deposit by phone bill, making it even easier to use your phone for gambling.

Some mobile casinos have free apps that you can use on your phone, while others have mobile-friendly browser casino games.

There are thousands of casino games that you can play right on your smartphone for free or for real money. Just make sure that you’re only gambling with money you can afford to lose and that you’re gaming responsibly.


4. Reading Books

Forget buying an e-reader when you can easily read just about any eBook right from your phone. Many people now use their smartphones to read books.

Today, many local libraries have app connectivity and allow you to download eBooks for reading or audiobooks for listening. You may even be able to pay for an account with a bigger library outside of your town for a bigger selection.

Of course, you can also buy eBooks from online stores and download them to read on your phone.

There are many e-reader apps out there that make it quick and easy to organize your books and read them.

5. Managing Your Home

Many people are now using their smartphones to manage their homes. As technology advances, more homes are becoming smart homes. With the touch of a button on an app, you can control your home’s:

  • Lights
  • Heating and cooling system
  • Locks
  • Sound system

Smart devices connect to your home’s WiFi connection, allowing you to control its functions right from an app on your smartphone. Others will use Bluetooth connectivity to give you control over the device.

Some people have complex smart home setups with different settings for different days of the week or moods. For example, if you’re watching a movie, you can dim your smart lights or even change their color to match the theme and mood.

6. Hunting for Treasure

Hidden treasures can be found virtually anywhere you go in the world. Of course, many people use metal detectors to find those treasures, but did you know that you can also use your smartphone for this purpose?

If you have an iPhone, you can download a free app called Metal Detector to go on your very own treasure hunt. The app uses your phone’s magnetometer to detect magnetic metals nearby. It won’t detect all metals, but that doesn’t make it any less useful.

Just point your phone’s camera towards an object and increase the intensity to start looking for metal objects.

There’s a similar app for Android devices, but the interface is a bit different.

7. Playing Games

Gaming used to be an uncommon smartphone pastime, but as mobile devices become more advanced, people can play more advanced games.

Along with the usual, simple mobile games, you’ll find trimmed-down versions of more popular game titles. You’ll also find more options for online multiplayer games.

Online gaming can help people stay connected no matter how far apart they are, so more people are using their smartphones for this purpose.

8. Investing

Although it’s increasing in popularity, online investing is still an uncommon smartphone pastime. However, there are many investment apps to choose from, and they aim to educate investors to help them make smarter investment decisions.

Some apps allow you to buy and sell stocks right from your smartphone. Additionally, you can use a robo-advisor to make investment decisions from your mobile device with minimal human intervention. Robo-advisors provide financial advice that’s based on algorithms and mathematical rules.

Whether you just want to learn more about investing or want to engage in the actual buying and trading of stocks, there are many apps that can help you reach your investing goals.

9. Digital Photography

Today, you can take and edit photos right from your smartphone. But even if you prefer shooting with a DSLR, you can still connect your camera right to your phone, upload your pictures, edit them and share or sell them. Again, you can do all of this right from your handheld mobile device.

There are many free and paid photo editing tools available for both iOS and Android devices. It’s easier than ever to edit and share photos, and with advanced editing tools, you can turn a hobby into a side gig or full-time job.

While most people use their smartphones to check the weather and social media, there are some people using their mobile devices in other fun ways. From gaming to investing, video editing and treasure hunting, there are so many smartphone pastimes that don’t get enough attention. Try one of these activities today and share your experiences.


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