How addicted are you to your smart phone, favorite social network or other tech device?
There have been two tongue-in-cheek studies I saw recently asking people what the deal is on giving up technology. The results were kind of comical, to say the least.
The first I saw in Real Simple magazine, which cited a study from McCann Worldgroup — a top global marketing communications company. The McCann study found 53% of people between the ages of 16-22 would rather give up their sense of smell than their favorite technology device. Really?!
Then I saw another study done by TeleNav, a navigational device company. The TeleNav tally took a different approach; they asked people what they would be most willing to give up for a week in order to hold onto their cell phone. Here’s a sampling of the responses:
- 70% of respondents would give up alcohol to keep their cell phone for a week.
- 63% would give up chocolate
- 55% said caffeine
- 54% said exercise
- How about “marital relations?” Thirty-three percent of people would give that up for 7 days to keep their smart phone!
From there, the TeleNav tally took a silly turn, with one in five people saying they would give up brushing their teeth; give up their shoes; or give up their computer in order to keep their phone.
The reality is we have become so connected to our phones. One out of three Americans carries a smart phone versus a traditional cell phone. I expect that the new ultra-cheap Androids will push that number to more than half by the middle of next year.
Our phones are our connection devices. Mine has my calendar, my GPS, my contacts, text messaging, email and web surfing. I find I spend less time at the computer now because my smart phone substitutes for it for so often.
My wife and I were in Italy in March in hill country and we had no cell service. Lane speculated I would not be able to handle it being without that connection for a week. But she was forced to grudgingly acknowledge that I could do it!
Many people sleep with their smart phone near their bedside, which can be very disruptive to sleep patterns. Lane charges her phone in our bathroom so she’s not tempted to look at it before bed. That’s a good idea to have at least some amount of disengaging at night.
I watch the people who still have a BlackBerry and how they get into that “Blackberry stoop” where they’re punching away at that thing. If that’s you, come up with time that you can separate and disengage from technology.