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Even while heavy smartphone usage is a problem unique to the twenty-first century, it is nonetheless a serious concern. Many individuals scroll endlessly through their social media feeds and other apps throughout the day. Many claims that the problem can be solved quickly by switching the phone to silent mode or off.

Keeping your phone can backfire 

However, Penn State researchers have discovered that this strategy could backfire spectacularly for some people. The authors of the study claim that when a person’s phone was in silent mode, they checked them more frequently. Notably, after turning their smartphones to silent, individuals who scored high scores on the “desire to belong” and “fear of missing out” personality assessments checked their smart phones more frequently. In addition, these people occasionally use their smartphones for longer periods of time.

The study’s authors conclude that there’s no “one size fits all” answer to the growing issue of cellphone distraction in society.

The industry’s strategy for reducing excessive phone use has typically been to look for ways to block your access to your phone, limit the frequency of alerts, or offer users the choice to turn off the sound. Although these strategies make sense, we actually don’t know if they work psychologically. It appears that this is among those situations where making cuts can potentially boomerang or backfire.

Screen time tracking apps used to collect information 

The study is based on information gathered from 138 iPhone consumers’ screen time tracking apps, this work. Researchers concentrated on how two different psychological characteristics might affect how people react to turning their smartphones to vibration or silent mode. The study’s authors specifically looked at those who are obsessive about acquiring information from someone else.

Unbelievably, whenever their phones were in silent mode as opposed to audio-alert or vibrating mode, every respondent checked their smart phones more frequently. The groups examined their phones on average 52.9 times each day whenever the vibration and sound were on. However, whenever their smartphones were off, the average number of times per day almost doubled to 98.2.