Smartphone addiction is a common affliction of today’s youth, young adults, and thirty-somethings. The ability to acquire information instantly at one’s fingertips has drastically altered the way people communicate and consume information. A group of people can often be seen crowded around a table at a restaurant or bar, each one with his or her eyes glued to the hand-sized glowing screen. Kevin Holesh, a blogger and iOS developer has set out to put a stop to the socially unhealthy trend of smartphone addiction and rescue the dependent tech-users with his revolutionary mobile application that he has aptly named, Moment.
Moment is designed to track how much time users spend on their smartphones per day and the answer is astonishing. The average smartphone user is thumbing away at their OLED (Organic Light Emitting Diode) for an approximate 3.3 hours per day. Moment allows users to set a personal allotment of smartphone use time per day. Users can set reminders for after they have reached their allotted time of use or for 50 percent of the appointed usage time per day. If used correctly, this handy application can make users more aware of the amount of time per day that they squander by staring into their OLED lit palms, and make the appropriate lifestyle changes.
Nomophobia is the the fear of being without a mobile phone or being away from contact by mobile phone. While there doesn’t appear to be an equivalent to the nicotine patch for nomophobia, phobics can take heart knowing that a strict regime of weening away from constant contact with one’s mobile device will eventually see the addiction begin to fade into lower intensity with time and adherence. Moment exists to aid in this endeavor.
The app’s creator admits that Moment was spawned by a desire to curb his own smartphone abuse. Holesh said that he found that his smartphone addiction had become disruptive to other areas of his life, causing distractions and loss in productivity. This is a common outcome of smartphone abuse. Users become attached to various applications, games, or can even get lost in the vast web of information that is available to them in an instant. Smartphones began as useful gadgets designed to make life easier, but as they evolve, they become time-eating gadgets designed to consume the user’s free time. Not to fear, Moment, the smartphone addiction app has come to the rescue!
Holesh says that Moment is “designed to be invisible,” unlike most apps which are executed with the sheer purpose of being flashy or distracting. Moment runs in the background, behind the apps with push notifications programmed to remind the user every 20 minutes or so that it is time to tend to a game, check progress, or purchase an upgraded version of the application. The climbing numbers of humans with a dependency on their mobile device has reached staggering numbers. A poll taken by Time Magazine questioned 5,000 individuals of various ethnic backgrounds from multiple countries found that 84 percent of the people who responded were unable to go a single day without checking in with their smartphones. Moment is only available for iOS at this time. Whether or not the smartphone addiction app is set to rescue android users from their own addictions is unclear.
By Faye Barton