Ever thought you spend too much time on your smartphone? For me the answer is yes, and I know I’m not alone. So I decided to give myself a digital detox and failed completely! This got me wondering if other people had tried to go offline too and how they did it. Ironically I needed to go online to check this out!
Before smartphones we only had texts and calls on our phones. In today’s connected world we use our phones for so many things. They’ve become our mobile office, our means of social communication and our source of knowledge, to name a few things. We even look at our devices for relaxing - think of the hugely successful Headspace app. We walk around with our heads down, staring at the screen, missing everything going on around us.
But a backlash is emerging with organizations helping you disconnect from the connected world. Don’t panic, it doesn’t have to be 24/7, even a bit can help and seems very much needed. According to Tanya Goodwin, Founder of Time to Log Off “the balance in our lives has become too much online”. Interestingly their promotional video shows this isn’t just a problem amongst the young, it affects all ages. According to Digital Detox, the average American “spends more than half their waking life staring at a screen”. But it’s not just in the US. Globally our eyes are spending more hours per day looking at a screen than ever before. These organizations offer retreats to help us disconnect, with physical activities to counteract the physical energy we use when constantly online. It seems that we’ve got so connected that we need help to disconnect. Like our devices, we’re always “on” which can cause problems with sleep, concentration and even depression.
So what if we could go back in time to a phone with no emails, social media or internet? Well Nokia has just rereleased the 3110 at MWC – one of the biggest technology events on the planet. Amongst all the latest innovations, this phone caused a huge stir. A marketing tactic or a response to an increasing number of consumers who want to be less tied to their smartphones?
So what does the future hold? Will we or become addicted to our smartphones or become more unconnected in a connected world? If we want the latter, there’s loads of information out there to help us go offline – it can all be found online.