In a time where the number of smartphone users worldwide, according to data researchers at Statista, has surpassed three billion and is forecasted to further grow by several hundred million, the concerns about the overreliance on screens are growing. So much so that digital wellbeing strategies are being implemented by companies like Apple and Google to help us take back control of our smartphone use.
Several research teams suggest that smartphones may be making us less happy in a much wider range of social situations than we might expect. A team of psychologists at the University of British Columbia found that phone use can undermine people’s enjoyment of social engagements such as when sharing a meal.
Piet van Lieshout experienced this firsthand in his restaurant Vieux Paris. “It has been four years since I first banned mobile phone use in my establishment. A lot of my peers do not dare to ban the phones due to fear of income loss, while the excessive use of smartphones is the number one annoyance for our guests.”
This somewhat radical act has been fruitful for the Bourgondian brasserie owner. “Our customers react enthusiastic to the ban because they are finally able to enjoy dinner peacefully without being distracted or annoyed. I will not lift the ban because I see how it is bringing people closer in an old-fashioned way,” states Van Lieshout.
The Fitness App Boom
The health & fitness sector is also witnessing a rise of digitalization, and it is not showing any signs of slowing down anytime soon. The global fitness app market is forecasted to reach 14.64 billion USD by 2027, a recent report by Reports and Data shows.
Nick Helsloot (shown below), founder and owner of Sport-Natural in Amsterdam, is reaping the benefits of the technological advancement in his gym. “We have developed our own app and it is being very well received. The possibilities with the app are endless, more sustainable and cost effective than our previous registration methods.”
One of the reasons for the growing popularity of fitness apps seems to be the fact that it helps maintain a healthy lifestyle. “With the app we provide an all-round service before and after a workout session. Our members get more assistance with the training schedules and can for example keep up a food journal to get the best possible results. The only place where the phone is not allowed, is during our group lessons. But in general, the mobile apps are bettering the fitness experience,” concludes Helsloot.
While some sectors are banning mobile devices, others are embracing digital tools to meet today’s technologically savvy and well-connected generations. One of the solutions Digilock offers to help improve digital well-being is JuiceBar by Digilock. This durable charging locker is the perfect tool for an undisturbed dinner with friends or focused workout at the gym. The compact locker is designed to keep and charge personal devices safe and sound so the patrons can focus on their goals while their mobile devices are being charged.
More information about JuiceBar can be found here.