Why Are You So Addicted To Your Smartphone?

Why Are You So Addicted To Your Smartphone?


Our use of technology, or perhaps overuse
or misuse, has been something of a cause celebre in the media of late. That’s partly because some of those that
created the technologies have now come out and said some of them are very likely not
good for you. One former executive at Facebook has said
he doesn’t believe children should even be on the platform. But we can’t blame social media alone; countless
articles of late have stated that we are probably just too connected, which is affecting our
social skills and making us more depressed – especially the young. But why can’t we put our gadgets down, and
what exactly are the negative consequences of too much time spent on our devices? That’s what we’ll find out today, in this
episode of the Infographics Show, Why Are You So Addicted to Your Smartphone? Pew Research recently released the details
of a study which told us where in the world was the biggest smartphone penetration. South Korea was top, followed by Australia,
Israel, the U.S, Spain and the UK. But that doesn’t mean people in those countries
are actually using their phone all the time, or does it? Well, based on a 2016 study led by Statistica,
it does look like people in those countries might fall into the category of being a “smartphone
zombie.” The study said Brazilians spent the most hours
on average connected to a smartphone at 4 hours 48 minutes per day. Next was China at 3 hours 3 minutes, followed
by the U.S. (2 hours 37 minutes), Italy (2 hours 34 minutes), Spain (2 hours 11 minutes)
and South Korea (2 hours 10 minutes). One thing rang true for all countries in the
study, and that was the fact time spent on a smartphone for the average person was up
quite a lot from 2012 to 2016. If we look at which countries spend most time
online, different studies give different results. One of the most recent ones from 2018 tells
us it’s the Asians that don’t log off so often. The report, called We Are Social, said Thais
spend the most time online with an average of 9 hours and 38 minutes per day. The Philippines was next at 9 hours 29 minutes
and Brazil following at 9 hours and 14 minutes. You had to go down the list a fair bit to
find the U.S., UK, Australia, or indeed many European nations. The same report stated that use of social
media was one of main reasons for time being spent online, putting the Philippines as the
biggest social media users, Brazil in second, Indonesia in third and Thailand in fourth. What we are all doing when we are using our
smartphone is not an easy question to answer, but one study by Mobile Insights gave some
numbers on what people in the U.S. are doing when they actively use their smartphone. 19 percent of the time was spent on Facebook,
and that was the leading usage time. Music, media and entertainment was next at
14 percent, followed by messaging at 12 percent, gaming at 11 percent, and utilities at 9 percent
of the time. Trailing behind was shopping, productivity,
and YouTube. Maybe that’s you right now. If Facebook is number one, then we guess we
should start there. What’s so bad about using Facebook? Quite a lot apparently. The American Psychological Association issued
a recent report saying that too much social media use can lead to depression. Soon after, big Apple investors stated that
they were concerned about the impact device use is having on society. Late last year, a former Facebook executive
said social media was “ripping society apart”, calling it a beast and saying he’d never
allow his kids to use it. This led to Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg issuing
statements saying he wanted people to spend only quality time on Facebook, and that meant
being active and communicating, and not just swiping. Soon after that, lots of leading tech execs
got together to form The Center for Humane Technology to, “liberate us from technology
addiction.” So, what is going here? We might remember what American author Jonathan
Franzen once wrote for the New York Times, in that making liking something not so natural
and more of a consumer choice, we are dehumanizing interaction. He also talked about narcissism and how our
online persona exists in a kind of flattering hall of mirrors. More recently, Tristan Harris talked about
how our devices manipulate us into using them. It’s a kind of aesthetic thing sometimes,
so he wants to make smartphones less visually appealing. Wired reported that Harris believes our gadgets
are “an existential threat to human beings.” In the same story Robert Lustig, a pediatric
endocrinologist at the University of California, said technology was addictive just like a
drug. For every like we get, or Pokémon we catch,
we get a hit of dopamine. And we want more…and more. “But if you overstimulate dopamine neurons,
they die,” he said, and this might lead to depression or even suicidal thoughts. Others have talked about Facebook’s culture
of envy. Seeing what we don’t have, or can’t have,
daily, all the time, as everyone marches on through what might seem at times to be their
perfect lives. Being so connected might make us vulnerable
to insecurities, as in some ways social media can be quite competitive. We want this positive feedback loop, but it’s
not the same as physical interaction. As one writer called it, “The human bond,
so essential to our well-being, has become desiccated within the apathetic medium of
the online hub. Social networks have become bottomless pools
into which billions of modern Narcissists sit entranced staring at their own virtual
reflections.” We don’t need to tell you about the fate
of Narcissus. We might ask if this has anything to do with
all those reports around the world that tell us depression is on the rise, especially in
teens. Most reports in English refer to the U.S.
and the UK, but the WHO in 2017 released a study stating that depression was on the rise
globally. So, maybe we should follow Zuckerberg’s
advice and use Facebook sparingly and try and use it for the good of our minds, for
our edification, rather than something that makes us feel insecure or envious… or just
because we are nosey. But Facebook is only part of the reason why
we can’t put our phones down. We have this exciting thing in our pocket
that flashes and beeps and looks so inviting, spurring one critic to compare it to opening
a casino on every street corner. For him there should be zoning laws for technology
as there are for casinos. NPR in 2018 talked about this manipulative
object we carry around with us, that is just so irresistible. The story mentions Russian psychologist Ivan
Pavlov, and what we know as Pavlov’s dog. The psychologist one day realized that when
his dog heard a bell or a buzzer, he knew it was feeding time, thereby associating a
sound to eating, which led to the dog drooling and looking excited. Modern psychologists tell us this is what
is happening to us when we hear a beep or a ding inside our pocket; we become excitable
like Pavlov’s dog. A reward is coming, and we get a hit of dopamine. And we want more hits, damnit! We check our phones on average every 15 minutes,
and those that make the tech use psychological tricks to keep us checking in. We are getting our dopamine hits, but like
drug addicts or gambling addicts, we are kinda playing into someone else’s trap. All this time spent checking in may affect
our sleep, our relationships, our work, or even all the creative things we might do to
have a flourishing existence. The long and short of it all is that psychologists
tend to agree we should be checking in less, and tech producers need to start thinking
about creating less powerful digital drugs. That isn’t easy of course, as most people
now need those beeps and likes, and need to feel they are not missing out on something. Experts even state that by putting your phone
down, you may experience withdrawal symptoms, such as craving, restlessness, irritability
or difficulty concentrating. Serious guides are out there to help you wean
off your digital fix and spend more time in real life. You might want to turn off notifications,
have a plan for the day and stick to it, take off the apps you don’t really need as that
might lead to a kind of app surfing, much like when you watched three hours of mind-numbing
cable TV. In general, not many people are against these
technologies, but we should be focusing on what we might call device “quality time”,
educating ourselves and being productive and creative. We hope these few minutes have been educational
for you. So, do you think people are spending too much
time on their smartphones? Let us know in the comments! Also, be sure to check out our other video
called Most Expensive Things in the World! Thanks for watching, and, as always, don’t
forget to like, share, and subscribe. See you next time!

100 comments

  1. I understand that its a bit ironic that I am telling you at the end to watch another one of our videos while I just told you how the 'addiction' triggers work. Sorry about that!

  2. it's not our fault that we're addicted to our smartphones it's your fault that you make such great contents

  3. Kicking FB is awesome for cutting the fix and improving happiness. Also changing your phone to monochrome mode also helps to stop touchy touchy it.

  4. I wake up at 2pm and stay on my phone till 5am the only time I'm off my phone per day is around an hour for taking a shower and things like that because I don't ever have anything to do in life and I'm always bored

  5. Fucking A.. Yeah I have a problem
    ..I was listening to my phone go off every 5 minutes while watching this video, and I realized I couldn't not look at the damn thing. Thanks for this video I think I will try and make a change in my life.

  6. At least you're aware of it. Thanks for this. I'd really love is you could delve deeper into this, and share more about what people can do to 1. Realize they have an addiction, and 2. Take steps to address is properly. Thank you!

  7. To be honest i really dont like phones because i just find them boring. I mean whats better, Playing a board game or having fun outside or checking social media messages etc. I understand if people get addicted to online games like roblox or fortnite because it is fun but smartphones arent addictive to me at all. If the world will grow bored of smartphones and the media then it will most likely decrease depression and panic disorders which would mean people would interact with others more commonly.

  8. I grew up long before cell phones. Social media back then was walking to a girls house and asking her if she wanted to play tag or walk to the store. As a teen hanging out with mainly girls or dancing was a lot more fun than looking at a tiny screen.
    Back then there were slaves to land line phones, but there weren't many.
    Today I spend a lot of time just looking at people and shaking my head. I really think the world has gone insane.

  9. In Spain i think its really a big problem you see the teens like zombies with smartphones. When im with my friends i have to confiscate their phones because if u don't they are all in social media instead of having a real conversation. So sad.

  10. I actually spend more time on YouTube than any other app or website on my phone and I can say it fits into the media category pretty well

  11. Wow. I didn't know that about overstimulating dopamine that it can die and that can be connected to depression and suicide. Maaan. Just makes me believe more in the truth of seeking to live a life in love to holiness and walking away from the pleasures of the world and seeking to walk within the love of God's name and his spirit. It is wisdom to do so. It is evil to ourselves to be addicted to these phones. We must love the truth of God and seek to love him with all of our hearts. Repent. Refuse to spend all your time on your phone or Tv or computer or tablet. And seek to pray and read the word of God the King James Bible, and seek to find other believers and find your hearts pleasure in Christ and faith in the Lord Jesus who died for us all. He loves us. Lets love him back.

  12. Im 13 and i got rid of my smaetphone and now i have an old blackberry. a phone is for calling an texting and thats it.

  13. So that's why I can't get a girlfriend too many women are online 😢 it's not like back in the day meeting face to face

  14. LOL addic? What is that?
    I have no facebook, and I dont listen to ANY music. Sometimes I turn on radio but thats NOT internet. And games. I got enough games with minecraft!

  15. To be completely honest I have a phone but I have no idea what to do with it since I never had a phone before and I'm 16 so I have no idea what to do with it

  16. Hemannjay Dayabhai plays and watches on Samsung tablet and my dad watches iPhone YouTube and playing Pokemon go like I do play Pokemon go and we play for maximum 6 to 7 hours and I still know how to Study and my dad knows how to do work. We're great. By:Hemannjay 💖💖💖💖💖💖💖

  17. I wanna go back to days without internet.. I wanna throw my smartphone, laptop and WiFi router away. I have internet addiction.

  18. I’ve read an article and seen a video from one of the Facebook execs that the Facebook was literally designed with psychological things in mind. With the like button the share button and other things they saw that it would give a bit of pleasure and they knew that it was going to be addictive and he was very serious when he said that he repeated that over and over and some other things over and over. They knew that it would bring the people back to the site again and again. This was also with instagram and twitter.

  19. I spend 9 hours at school, 6 hours sleeping, 3 hours doing homework and studying, 2 hours practicing guitar, and 1 and a half hours eating during the day, and a half an hour doing chores, leaving 2 hours to play on my phone during the day.

    And I may or may not sometimes skip guitar for my phone. And I may sometimes get distracted from studying with my phone. And I may or may not procrastinate doing chores by playing on my phone. And I may sometimes only get 4 hours of sleep from being on my phone.

  20. Why arent schools teaching discipline about online addictions, schools suppose to teach important stuff, self control seems important. great vid!

  21. Exactly. It does result in depression. However, when you come to know about the reality of our life it's also depressing.

  22. I'm 20 but I mostly use my phone for music. I guess I'm addicted to my phone because I have sensitive hearing and the music helps me.

  23. This feels so misleading!What about other developed countries within Asia like China and Singapore?And given this video was published in 2018,I am pretty sure the average hours spent on the phone has well exceeded 9 hours.

  24. Also, sadly, most companies including phone-makers puts money ahead of people in the process of making new phones : c

  25. The thamnail made me watch this video because I most of the time have homework and I always tell myself just one more video and then watch like 8 more.

  26. All the time humans are so comfortable the they are getting lazy so they use the state of technology to do anything with a push of a button that they manipulate you personality or even
    worse your Life

  27. Its a known fact, smart phones cause very harmful disease, it took me years to realise that, my grammy never had a smart phone & she lived over 100 & never got sick, now a days so meany people now a days have so much unknow disease and dont realise smart phones genarate high levels of rediation wich can change a human dna and create alot of different diseases

  28. Pffftt im never gonna quit being on my phone. it doesn't affect me, it doesnt make me depressed or anything, that's just what adults say because they don't understand 🙄

  29. Im filipino and i spend around 14-16 hours playing on my pc and just 2 hours on my phone. Doesnt really affect me that much because my parents are always asleep and i still keep an average grade :/ idk why prob bcuz im half chineese or something

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