Last week, two Apple investors sent a letter to Apple, asking them to address the issue of smart phone addiction in children. The letter asked developers to take responsibility for their software and called on them to make changes. A number of studies have shown that smartphone software is addictive due to its availability and constant stream of notifications. These notifications create a constant need for viewers to check their phone and often causes users anxiety if they can not check their phone. The letter also mentioned the negative impact smartphones have on teens who use social media. To help curb smartphone addiction, the two investors who composed the letter suggested updating the software to allow more parental control. The controls would allow parents to decrease full access of the phone and apps or limit the time the device is used.
Unfortunately, the letter does not guarantee change. Until universal changes are implemented, parents can download monitoring programs and apps for their children’s devices (contact your mobile carrier for monitoring plans). By monitoring how children use technology, parents can help reduce the likelihood that children will become addicted to technology.