Our latest guest post is from freelance writer Shaun Chatman: We walk around with our cellphones and smartphones attached to our hands like a second limb. Do we do this because it's love or have we, as humans, started to develop an actual physical addiction to these cellular devices? Psychologists and healthcare professionals have debated this exact question and have yet to come up with a concrete answer. Let's take a closer look at the facts and statistics surrounding the issue and let you be the judge.
An Overview of the Statistics Surrounding Smartphone Usage
Image via Flickr by Ed Yourdon
There is no denying that people are becoming more and more reliant upon smartphones. The statistics prove that to be a fact. Some of the statistics and facts that support just how dependent people have become on smartphones include the following:
- It is estimated that 91.4 million smartphones are used in the United States and over 1.08 billion in the world
- 37% of adults surveyed said they believe they are addicted to their smartphone
- 60% of teens surveyed said they were addicted to smartphones
- 22% of adults and 47% of teens have admitted to using their smartphone in the bathroom
What is the Real Definition of Addiction?
Image via Flickr by Alan Cleaver
Before we can determine if smartphone usage by a hyper-connected smartphone user is an addiction or love, we need to know the actual definition of both love and addiction. First, we'll explore addiction, then love. According to Webster's Dictionary, the definition of addiction is a compulsive need for and use of a habit-forming substance. Webster's Dictionary's definition of addiction further states that the individual who has developed the addiction will experience well-defined symptoms upon withdrawal of the substance. The substance in question is usually defined as aproduct that can be harmful or designed to hurt the user.
What is the Definition of Love?
Image via Flickr by jkavo
There are several different definitions of love according to Webster's Dictionary. The first definition details a warm attachment or devotion to an object or person. The second definition is an object of admiration, attachment or devotion.
Are People Addicted or Are They Experiencing an Intoxicating Love for Smartphones?
Image via Flickr by Lars Plougmann
When comparing the definitions of love and addiction, the answer to the question might seem fairly obvious. People aren't experiencing an addiction to their smartphones, especially if you compare it to the definition of the word. No one has been hospitalized for lack of smartphone use. No one has been harmed by using a smartphone for too long either. This labels the device as a non-harmful, non-addicting substance, which makes it almost impossible for an addiction to form. The truth is the term 'addiction' seems to have lost its actual definition when applied to hyper-connected smartphone users. There is no physical dependency developing, but there is an intense love for smartphones, such as some stylish Android phones and Windows 8 phones that are designed to make life easier.
Shaun Chatman is a freelance writer who is a well published author on many authority sites. He lives in Dunedin, FL, and spends his free time playing with his kids or his collection of gadgets.