USA Today: What is iPhone app addiction doing to people’s health?

“Most people start their day with a cup of coffee, a shower, a good stretch. Beth Akins rolls over, grabs her iPhone and fires up Shake & Spell, her favorite iPhone app game,” Mary Brophy Marcus reports for USA Today. “‘I usually play before I even get out of bed,’ says Akins, 54, of Louisville, who says a day without Shake & Spell leaves her with feelings of withdrawal. ‘I play every day.'”

Marcus reports, “Apps is short for computer maker Apple’s applications, and it refers to the scores of games and services that iPhone or iPod touch owners can download and interact with. There are 85,000 different apps for Akins and the other 50 million users around the world.”

Marcus reports, “People may wonder what the iPhone apps obsession is driven by as they witness ‘i’ users strolling down work hallways and streets ‘apping’ and bumping into others. And what about all those children seen manically poking away at their parents’ iPhone games in doctors’ offices and cashier lines across the country? What is app addiction doing to people’s health?”

‘Clearly, the reward circuitry in the brain is getting something out of it,’ says Marina Picciotto, professor of psychiatry, neurobiology and pharmacology at Yale University,” Marcus reports. “She says there is no research on the impact of apps on health yet.”

Red more in the full article here.

[Thanks to MacDailyNews Reader “Jack F.” for the heads up.]


  1. “She says there is no research on the impact of apps on health yet.”

    So, is this an article about nothing? Didn’t Seinfeld already do that? I mean, seriously…

  2. “… the impact of apps on health …” Like calluses on your fingers from sliding on the smooth glass screen. How about the reward and comfort of knowing that you purchased a really great product and service and that all of your kids and family really enjoy it.

    You could get another one soon. Maybe for Christmas!

  3. I think someone should write an app to track the health of the user. We could get a huge grant for the study from the government. I would even be willing to spearhead the study ” width=”19″ height=”19″ alt=”smile” style=”border:0;” />

  4. This ain’t nothin’. You people simply would not believe the amount of time my wife spends playing Elebits on my son’s Wii. I’d be willing to wager that the vast majority of you haven’t even *heard* of Elebits. She starts her morning with it for hours. She generally ends her day with it for as long as she can play until she can’t stay awake anymore. And don’t even try to talk to her about it being a problem. This is the worst addiction I’ve seen in a long time. It’s video game crack.

  5. Yeesh… did Apple’s competitors commission this article or what? Odd how they focus exclusively on the iPhone, and don’t mention all the teens walking around texting their friends on some other model of phone, “bumping into others” along the way or getting “carpal tunnel” from the incessant texting or game playing. Why single out the iPhone?

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