Smartphones in Vicinity Reduces Brain Power, says Study


Published Date : Jul 06, 2017

According to a recent study by the McCombs School of Business at The University of Texas in Austin, keeping smartphones in surrounding significantly curtails cognitive capacity in human beings, even if it is switched off.

The study, among the first of its time, was done on nearly 800 smartphone users, aiming to measure their efficiency when they had their phones in vicinity, and otherwise. The researchers, headed by McCombs Assistant Professor Adrian Ward, asked the participants to take a series of computer tests that required rigorous concentration for full markets.

Smartphones Distract

The tests were formulated to evaluate the cognitive capacity of the participants, the ability of the brain to crunch and process the data to reach decisive results. The instructions involved the participants to keep the smartphones in silent modes at the desk with face down, in personal bag or pocket, or in another room. It was detected that those participants with their smartphones in other room significantly outscored those who had their phones in their pocket or bag.

The findings of this study noted that merely the presence of smartphones impaired cognitive function among the participants. Even if they felt they were paying full attention to the tests, they fell short, proving that cognitive capacity decreases when smartphones become noticeable.

Another experiment attempted to judge a person’s self-reported smartphone dependency, and how strong humans now feel the need of their smartphones in order to manage their daily routine. The study also observed that keeping the phone on or off hardly mattered, as only their presence was enough to tempt them to pick it up and use it.