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Lockdown Sends Our Screentime Skyrocketing

Phone users under coronavirus lockdown are reporting significant increases in the amount of time they are spending on their devices. On Sunday, iPhone users received their weekly Screen Time alerts, prompting a surge in social media posts about the knock-on effects of the Covid-19 pandemic.

Other phone tracking apps like YourHour also flooded users with notifications about their phone usage.

The spike in phone use appears to stem from social distancing measures put in place by countries aiming to contain the outbreak.

Unable to leave their homes to socialise with friends and family, people are increasingly turning to their smartphones for entertainment and to stay connected.

Some Twitter users shared screenshots showing their phone use going up by more than 200% since entering self isolation.

Many people recommended turning off the screen time notifications while under lockdown to avoid being shamed by their phones.

Others claimed to be “disgusted” by their phone use and recommended that people take a digital detox from their devices.

The issue of smartphone addiction has become a focus of tech companies in recent years, with Apple launching its Screen Time feature with iOS 12 in order to allow users to set limitations on how much they use their iPhone or iPad.

Google has also launched similar features in Android designed to promote “digital wellness”. Last year, the technology giant also unveiled a Paper Phone — essentially just a printable booklet containing any contact details, map directions or appointments for the day.

Several studies have warned that excessive smartphone use can have a negative impact on people’s mental health.

Hollywood actors were among those tweeting about their increased screen time, after all film productions in California shut down earlier this month.

Former Saturday Night Live stars David Spade and Sarah Silverman both joked about their phone use over the last week. “My iPhone just told me my screen time last week was nine days”” Spade tweeted. “Is that even possible isn’t a week still 7? I have no idea.” Silverman tweeted: “My screentime was up 118% last week! I’m killing it!”

―Times of India

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