SEOUL, July 7 (Korea Bizwire) – As the COVID-19 pandemic drags on, the risk of ‘digital addiction’ – like smartphone overuse — has emerged as another side effect to deal with.
In South Korea, where people are supportive of social distancing in accordance with the government’s quarantine guidelines, a growing number of people tend to spend their time in isolation, leaving them prone to overuse of digital gadgets as a result.
According to a survey conducted by the Korean Addiction Forum, since social distancing measures have been ushered in, time spent on smartphone use has been on the rise. Around half of the respondents (44.3 percent) said the average time spent on smartphones has increased, with 28.7 percent reporting a modest increase, and 15.6 saying that smartphone use had increased significantly.
The most popular smartphone apps were related to social networking services and online chatting (48.6 percent combined), followed by news (47.2 percent) and shopping (34.6 percent).
Roughly one quarter of the respondents (24.4 percent) said they were spending more time playing games using smartphones.
Those with symptoms of depression and anxiety have relied more heavily on smartphone use. When it came to playing games, those with these afflictions showed a significant rise in their time spent on the category.
As the protracted coronavirus outbreak is unlikely to ease in the near term, the problem of digital gadget addiction will be another challenge to address for society as a whole.
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