It is time to take a pledge. We have been obsessive about our smartphones for too long. It is time to take a stand. As for me, I do hereby solemnly pledge that I will maintain a fine balance of the mobile world and the physical world and not bury my head in my mobile phone all day.

Today we are witnessing a generation where people have more phones (often double) than that of the count of family members. A family of two may end up having as high as 5-6 phones, if both the members are in the age group of 20-40. And with wider adoption of smartphones across generations, genders and colors, the mobile of today can be best described as a smart device which can also make calls and send sms. Indeed today it has exploded in making possible a variety of communication facilities and allows the user access and use of billions of applications for virtually every thing that can be thought of.

So what is the net outcome when people are glued to their mobile phone. While a class is going on, students are busy sharing images, videos and jokes over WhatsApps and Vibers. In the middle of the road, people are busy taking selfies for Snapchat. Sometimes, some ladies are busy taking selfies with blatant disregard to traffic rules. Kids are travelling on the road with headphones and earphones glued to their ear. Social media and interactions have engulfed users like a epidemic. These actions are slowly disrupting the social and personal lives of people and families. The risk of accidents aside, users are seemingly forgetting that there is a physical world outside the cyber world. This is where an initiative like MobileManners could make so much of a difference where the disruptive technology is actually sometimes disrupting social, professional and personal harmony.

MobileManners is an initiative where the company is encouraging users to log into their portal (using Facebook and Twitter) and take an oath to address some of these major concerns caused by the misuse of this disruptive technology. We have witnessed quite a lot of interesting oaths, some of which are as follows:

  1. I Pledge to interact with people in person and not have my head buried in my phone.
  2. I would spend quality time family instead of using mobile after coming home from office.
  3. I Pledge to not use my phone while driving, riding or flying.
  4. I Pledge to not be a snooper & peek into other’s phones.
  5. I Pledge to not shush people in the middle of a conversation because somebody is calling me up.

Indeed it is an interesting initiative being led by Acer India. Acer is one of the leading laptops and desktop manufacturing companies globally and in India, they are based out in Bangalore. Acer is attempting to address this seemingly hopeless challenge which is being caused by this disruptive technology. It is indeed praise worthy that a company in this industry is taking such an active role in this initiative where mobile phone manufacturers are the ones to gain the most. Kudos to Acer for taking this up.  Acer Smartphones are well known for their rich set of features (like hind end cameras, fast networking speed, fantastic user interface, etc etc) while providing life saving core support through long battery life, high affordability and fantastic after sales service. We earnestly hope that this initiative really helps in the social recognition of the problems that are engulfing, due to the (mis)use of this technology, despite its needs in the current ecosystem.

By Kar

Dr. Kar works in the interface of digital transformation and data science. Professionally a professor in one of the top B-Schools of Asia and an alumni of XLRI, he has extensive experience in teaching, training, consultancy and research in reputed institutes. He is a regular contributor of Business Fundas and a frequent author in research platforms. He is widely cited as a researcher. Note: The articles authored in this blog are his personal views and does not reflect that of his affiliations.

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