What is Information and Communication Technology?- Meaning and Applications

With the mobile phone, users have a whole world of entertainment, information and communication all at their finger tips. The gadgets associated with Information and Communication Technology keeps evolving and getting better. There’s no doubt that in the next few years to come, communication technologies have hit a whole new phase of advancement.

   All communication technologies are called Information Communication Technology (ICT). They include computers, phones, and every media application that can be used to send, store, receive and retrieve information but in a digital mode.

   Information communication technology are most times referred to as Information technologies(IT) although ICT is broader. Every technology that facilitates communication deserves to be regarded as ICT 

Examples of ICT Gadgets

  • Computer
  • Automated teller machines
  • Dispensing machine
  • Radio sets
  • Telephone
  • Cell phone
  • Satellite Communication
  • Smart watch
  • Headphone
  • Earphones
  • Television

   Importance of ICT

  1. It makes information storage and retrieval easy
  2. With information communication technology, we get to experience global networking
  3. ICT has given a lot of persons opportunities for employment. In other sense, it has created a source of livelihood.
  4. With ICT, there are exchange of ideas and inventions. E.g: social media
  5. ICT has also enhanced learning. For instance, online learning classrooms
  6. Documentation has been made easy. One can make uploads anytime anywhere 

   Challenges of Information and Communication Technology.

Though with the numerous gains and advantages ICT has, one can’t deny the challenges that come with it. Some of the challenges include: 

  • The majority of the gadgets are quite expensive. Computers and other related gadgets are costly, thereby not affordable for all classes – low, medium, and high class.
  • Some of the ICT gadgets are technical. Good expertise and technological know-how are needed to get through with the uses of some of the gadgets. A proper understanding of each gadget is needed.
  • Accessibility: Most ICT gadgets are not easily accessible. Persons in a remote area has little or no access to communication technology.
  • A major challenge to the use of ICT is the technology of being hacked and defrauded. Cybercrimes and internet fraud have become a huge cloud over the internet. There are also cases of viruses developed by persons to attach to other’s devices for the sole purpose of destruction.

   Application of ICT

ICT has become applied in various spheres of life. It has gotten a lot of uses in the everyday life. Some of the various fields include: 

  • Education

In the education sector, ICT now plays a huge role. Teachers and students use ICT for research to further a topic for both teaching and learning. The content provides study materials in the form of test, videos and images. An online platform for learning has been established. Teleconferencing also aids the teacher student learning with the online platform, students learn, submit assignments and even ask questions, discussion groups too.

  • Banking

The banking sector makes use of ICT. Of a truth, ICT connects the entire banking sector. The same way the brain is the centre of every human, so is the ICT the center of the banking sector. Evey transaction in the banking sector requires ICT, customer deposit and money withdrawal make use of the internet. There are E-banking services that can be done from the comfort of one’s home all through the power of ICT 

  • E-commerce

Buying and selling of goods has made faster and even though the use of ICT. In e-commerce, consumers and customers don’t need to leave the comfort of their home before makijg purchase. Sites like Amazon, Alibaba has made it easy for people to make purchase as well as make payments online. Suppliers also keep track of business transactions with ICT. Also, communication between suppliers/companies and clients have improved using ICT.

  • Health

ICT have really been resourcful in the health sector. The quality of care given to patients have improved. CT Scans, Ultrasound, ECG, EKGs have all made the diagnosing of different diseases easy. Documentation of patients records has also been made easy.

  • Communication

ICT has made the communication between families and friends possible irrespective of distance. Social Media platforms like WhatsApp, Facebook, emails and voice mails have given loved ones and strangers a room to interact.

Conclusion

Information Communication Technology comes with a lot of challenges. Yes, but these challenges don’t outweigh their importance and advantages. However, ICT has transformed lives and will keep getting better. 

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