A digital cell phone from Nokia.
Millions of people in the United States and around the world use cellular phones. They are such great gadgets -- with a cell phone, you can talk to anyone on the planet from just about anywhere!

These days, cell phones provide an incredible array of functions, and new ones are being added at a breakneck pace. Depending on the cell-phone model, you can:

  • Store contact information
  • Make task or to-do lists
  • Keep track of appointments and set reminders
  • Use the built-in calculator for simple math
  • Send or receive e-mail
  • Get information (news, entertainment, stock quotes) from the Internet
  • Play simple games
  • Integrate other devices such as PDAs, MP3 players and GPS receivers

In this edition of HowStuffWorks, you'll learn all about cell phones, including how they work, the different functions they provide and what to look out for when you're shopping around!

To access all of the different parts of this article, choose from the map below:

You may want to start with How They Work to learn the basics about cell phones. If you're planning to buy one, be sure to check out the Features section to learn about which phones will suit your needs.