Phone addictions? Can it be solved?

BY: CLAIRE KIM

Our generation has completely changed from what it was like a couple of decades ago. This past week as I was walking down the halls of my school for testing, I stumbled across many posters that stated in capital letters, “DO NOT BRING YOUR PHONE OR ANY ELECTRONIC DEVICES DURING THE TESTING PERIOD OR WE WILL CONFISCATE THEM.” It was an obvious, yet shocking statement as I came to realize that our society really has changed towards such a technological direction. In the past, this probably wasn’t even an issue for schools to address because smartphones were not such a big thing at that time. However, now with technology in the hands of pretty much every student, it does seem like an appropriate call that schools must make all the time. Electronic devices ranging from our computers and iPads to our beloved smartphones are becoming quite addictive as this era progresses. With all the games, social media, and youtube videos that are readily available upon easy access it’s quite hard for us as customers to stray away from these distractions. In fact, the number of teenagers and even young adults who claim to feel an addiction to their phones is alarming to hear. While it is pretty common for teenagers to find themselves trapped in this world of social media, this phone addiction problem isn’t just centered around this particular age group. Even kids from ages 10-12 are submissively falling into the myriad of games and fun apps that are available on the phones. From what I see, phone addictions have increased at such a high rate that it is almost becoming too extreme of an addiction. So with this growing issue in mind how can companies work to promote safe and steady usage of our smartphones? Recently during Apple’s showcase of their newest apps and updates at its Worldwide Developers Committee, they presented a couple of apps such as Screen Time which can help remind users of how much time they are spending on their phones each day. It’s nice to see how companies are starting to realize the negative complaints the public has and are working to create ways people can reduce this unhealthy habit. Although these apps may present fewer rates of phone addiction, I do believe that it won’t be that much of an impact unless we manually decide to block ourselves from using our phones which I feel won’t be a popular approach for many. Phone addictions will never go away as it is already a natural part of our society. Although it is hard to ensure such success from these apps, I believe that they can possibly create a more favorable environment for those who want to lower their phone usage and are struggling to do with the current system.

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