30 Aug Is it time for a dumb phone?
It’s true that smartphones have made our lives easier in so many ways, yet the technology on these devices is dominating our lives. Most people tap their smartphones on average 2,617 times a day.
But many of us want to switch off from the constant pinging of notifications and the temptation to scroll social media, and there’s a way to make this change – by buying a dumb phone. This basic push-button mobile can make and receive calls, offers texting but it has no apps and no internet access or camera.
New figures show that these dumb phones are becoming increasingly popular. Last year, the growth in demand for dumb phones was 5 per cent compared to a demand of only 2 per cent for smart phones.
Here are four very different approaches to using a dumb phone, choose the level that works best for your lifestyle now. All of the suggestions will help you to create a better tech-life balance, which is what we’re all about here At Time To Log Off.
# Level 1: The free time dumb phone
Many of us need our phones for work, so during the week use your smart phone but at the weekends (or your days off) switch to a dumb phone with a separate SIM card. This way you won’t be tempted to check your work emails or answer work calls during your free time. Free time is just that, time away to disconnect from work. In fact, free time matters so much that from 1st January 2017, French workers were given the right to disconnect from technology outside of employment hours.
# Level 2: The evening dumb phone
Do you have a boss who emails you outside of work and expects a response? This is a problem for many people and research shows that 40 per cent of us regularly feel the need to check our work emails in the evening, which can have a negative impact on our relationships. Or perhaps you have a demanding family member or friend who emails you late at night? Do you want to be free of feeling like you have to respond?
If this is you, when you leave the workplace, and/or on an evening, switch to a dumb phone so that you’re still contactable in an emergency but can’t pick up any emails. Don’t forget that you can screen your calls with voice mail, and you can ignore texts, if it’s not urgent don’t respond.
# Level 3: The working week dumb phone
Around 28 per cent of the working week is spent managing emails and it’s a huge cause of stress for so many people. If possible, why not switch to a dumb phone during your entire working week? This way you can create just one hub on your work computer for checking work-related emails. You won’t waste time having to check, delete and manage messages that you’ve already seen on your smart phone.
# Level 4: The dumb phone convert
The average person spends 24 hours a week on the internet, which is double the amount of time a decade ago. Why not free up your time for other things like exercise, reading, talking face-to-face with friends and switch to a dumb phone permanently? Imagine, no more hours wasted scrolling on social media or replying to annoying group What’s App conversations. Less screen time will improve your sleeping patterns, reduce anxiety and you will feel happier – it’s a fact.
Not sure if you need to change your screen habits? Why not try our quiz: Do I need a digital detox?