The Bane of my Existence

While smartphones give you access to information on your fingertips, they are also taking people apart instead of connecting them

Words by Samreen Khoja 

Back in 1386, poet Geoffrey Chaucer wrote ‘Familiarity breeds contempt’ and those three words have never been truer than in this day and age where smart devices rule the population.

Walk into any tech shop and you’ll see at least fifteen ‘smart’ devices. Refrigerators, light bulbs, televisions, speakers, headphones, security systems and even a simple toastie. However, the most ubiquitous of them all is the smartphone–the item upon which this whole smart revolution was founded. Remember in school when we had to write an essay on whether smartphones are a boon or a bane? Well, I agree that we have information on our fingertips with a smartphone, but that’s where it all ends.

Picture this–you are at a bar with your friends and all they do is spend time on social media. What happened to the time when conversations were at the centre of your meetings? I was at a cafe with an old college friend and we were having a snack. As we were eating I glanced around casually and noticed something strange. Every person at every table had a smartphone in their hands and was constantly texting, playing games while chitchatting with the people accompanying. That is when I asked myself, are these smartphones really connecting people or are they taking them apart? Why can we not behave like it’s the 90s when smartphones were a far-fetched dream? Can we keep our hands off the smartphones?

What’s worse is that people use smartphones as an excuse to get themselves out of situations. Do not want to interact with people on the subway? Pretend to do something on your phone or appear to be engrossed listening to music. I will state a term for smartphones that seems pretty accurate to me personally, which is that they are a necessary evil. I am sick of the deluge of information–the constant communications, notifications, and updates. I am crying out for silence in this fast-paced smartphone owned world!