App Addiction - Giving Up Your Cell Phone - News and Weather For The Quad Cities -

App Addiction - Giving Up Your Cell Phone

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Have you ever tried to give up your smart phone? TV6 asked a local college student, who is not addicted to his phone, to give up all his apps for 24-hours. The rules were no texting, no emailing and no social media on his phone. The only thing he could use his cell phone for was to make calls.

"My day started at 5:05am. My alarm went off on my computer, because I couldn't set it on my phone," says James Stratton.

When Stratton abandoned one form of technology, he used another one by strapping a go pro camera on his head to document his app free adventure.

"As teenagers we think of something we want to say, we tweet and text instead of calling people," adds Stratton.

The morning went well for Stratton, he went to class and played on the computer.

"You do different things on the internet with your phone," says Stratton, "I use Twitter way more on my phone than I would on my computer, so I definitely didn't use social media as much."

In the middle of the afternoon Stratton's phone still sat silent, right next to him.

"It's 1:05 pm and I feel like my phone is almost like a companion. It's weird that you have a text, but you can't open it. You want to know what's there, even though it's probably nothing," says Stratton.

As the day goes on Stratton continues going to class and working on the computer. However, Stratton starts to pick up his phone.

"I've reached for my cell phone a few times and opened it," says Stratton, "There's a light that blinks at me when I receive a text and it kind of catches your eye. I even got to the point where I would do the unlock code and pull the bar down to look at the text and then close it, and put it back in my pocket."

A few hours later Stratton is realizing how dependent all of us are on the technology smart phones dial us into.

"I had a meeting with the dean of students for a story I was doing and she emailed me to change our meeting time," says Stratton, "I obviously didn't have my phone to email her back."

Stratton made his meeting with the dean after she called him. The rest of his day, meant more time to focus on his school work.

"I'm getting more homework done now that I'm not constantly receiving texts or texting people back, so that's definitely good."

The app free adventure came to an end at bedtime and Stratton walked away with an important lesson.

"We use our cell phones way too much, my self included," adds Stratton, "I don't feel like I'm a huge cell phone user, but even in society today, as a whole, we use our cell phones way too much."

Being constantly connected to our cell phones can bring about other problems besides addiction. A fatal car accident on Division Street in 2011 was caused when the driver crossed the center line while texting. However, there are benefits to having cell phones close by. One is public safety, because people are able to call in crimes much easier.

"There pretty much isn't a day where I don't hear a call for a drunk driving or road rage suspect on the road, " says Chief Frank Donchez with the Davenport Police Department, "We're making those arrests on people that are out there drunk driving, because people have their phones and they're able to call in and say I'm here now, I'm following this car and we can get there."

Cell phone addiction is being studied by psychologists. Research is in the very early stages, because cell phones haven't been around that long. However, some psychologists think Nomophobia or cell phone addiction will eventually end up being classified as a clinical disorder.

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