Probably there is no other technological innovation that has changed people’s daily lives so profoundly and quickly such as smartphones did. Smartphone perfectly embodies the digital revolution and together with social networks, brought us in a new communicative era, that is the “permanent communicative overabundance” (Gui, 2014). Smartphone is a multifunctional device and due to its portability it takes easily part to all our daily activities: in our work place, such as in our funny and lazy moments.
Moreover, in Italy and in other European countries, part of the digital divide have been fullfilled by the spread of mobile phones, which offer the possibility of always being connected especially to young people. Around half of the Internet users (44.6%) claim to be online via mobile phone or smartphone (ISTAT, 2017). Regarding teenagers, in 2013 about 47% of them declared to have a smartphone with Internet connection, while in 2018 a survey conducted in Lombardy (northern Italy) highlights that the 98.5% of teenagers were using Internet on their smartphones.
However, smartphone users are also reporting increasing symptoms of smartphone overuse unease. Indeed smartphone is becoming dangerously pervasive in our everyday life. Time spent on smartphones is constantly growing, occupying temporal spaces previuosly used for different activities, or simply spent in doing nothing. It is clear that having constant access to the Internet, to its information, and to interpersonal relationships, requires people new competencies, skills and even a stronger self-control. In order to help people in managing hyperconnectivity, Google recently invested in a research project which aims to balance Android and smartphones usage.
Anyhow smartphones’ use is still an unexplored research area, although it is an interdisciplinary field, which could prompts the collaboration among different disciplines. Exploring how individuals, groups or companies, are using smartphone could encourage wider reflections about its repercussion on personal ad social wellbeing.
Following this research questions our project aims to analyze the impact of smartphones on people quality of life, with a special focus on young generations. We aim to analyze the relations between smartphone use and other variables such as social inequalities, learning outcomes, family backgound and other social aspects.