More than two thirds (67 percent) of Americans aged 65 and older get news on a mobile device (in 2016, that number was 43 percent; in 2013, it was 22 percent). Mobile news consumption among 50- to 64-year-olds also increased sharply over the past four years.

it takes roughly 165 pounds of raw mined materials to make the average cell phone ... the recoverable elements within any given smartphone are only worth a couple bucks ... of the 50-or-so elements that are in a Galaxy Note 7, we can only recover about a dozen of them through recycling. Lost are most of the rare earth elements, which are generally the most environmentally destructive and human labor-intensive to mine

The proliferation of mobile phones in Africa, alongside falling handset and data costs, are making the widespread usage of e-health solutions increasingly viable. A recent report by mobile operator trade association GSMA found that 557 million Africans have mobile subscriptions. This figure is expected to reach 735 million by 2020.

The disparity in the news consumption preferences of the old and young is even more clear when it comes to mobile. Seventy percent of 18- to 29-year-olds say they prefer to only get news on mobile devices. That number declines to 53 percent of people ages 30 to 49 and 29 percent of those between the ages of 50 and 64. (Mobile news consumption on the whole is rising, though: Around 72 percent of respondents said that they get news on mobile devices. That’s up from 53 percent in 2013.)

The shift to digital security that uses tools like biometric verification and mobile credentialing also heightens fears around protecting the data sets integral to their use ... putting terabytes of sensitive data together in one place for any purpose creates a huge target for malicious attackers ... And numerous examples, from the 2013 hack of retailer Target—which exposed 40 million customers’ financial even the biggest, best-known entities can struggle with the task.

there are at least seven billion mobile phone subscriptions in the world (four and a half billion people have access to a flush toilet). So more than twice as many people have a mobile phone as have access to a bank account. If your phone can give you access to the things you would need from a bank, well, you’ve just disinvented the need for banks, and fundamentally changed the operation of the money system, across whole swathes of the developing and emerging world.

Phones...are becoming more and more secure...But the phone networks? They’re rather becoming less secure...because there’s more and more possibility for one of these technologies to be the weakest link ... Phones now operate on more sophisticated 3G and 4G (also known as LTE) networks. In theory, IMSI catchers can pinpoint only the location of these phones, not listen to calls or read texts. But none of that matters if the IMSI catcher in question can just knock a phone call back down to 2G

The trackers are called cell-site simulators because they monitor mobile devices by mimicking cell towers. When the tracker is turned on, all cellular phones within range connect to it and transmit their location. This gives police the ability to identify all phones at a given locale — say, an apartment or office building — and to log the movements of handsets over time

Stingrays have turned up everywhere. They’ve been documented at 53 agencies spread across 21 states, used in major cities like New York and Chicago as well as smaller departments in Memphis, Durham, and San Jose. In a 2015 review, Baltimore police admitted using the device more than 4,300 times, sometimes for crimes as minor as a stolen cell phone. The US Marshals have even lent the devices out to Mexican officials hunting down cartels.

the Internet is evolving differently in the developing world than it has here in the US. Because network and phone technologies aren’t as mature—and because people have less money to spend on tech—low-bandwidth messaging apps like WhatsApp have become a primary gateway onto the Internet as whole. In Africa, web browsing accounts for 22 percent of mobile traffic, about twice as much as WhatsApp. But no other individual service is even close to WhatsApp’s numbers. Not YouTube...Not Facebook.