While many things are expected at I/O 2018, Google could also talk about a known yet unattended issue: smartphone addiction. WSJ has reported that Google might bring new features to Android that’ll help people in using their devices less often.
The move comes at a time when talks about the use of people’s data and privacy are happening everywhere in the tech world, thanks to the Cambridge Analytica scandal.
One can’t ignore Google’s role in people’s lives considering the amount of data they collect. The company has been quiet over the months when people were busy targetting Facebook.
But technology addiction, considering the number of people who use them, isn’t something that should be sidestepped, especially in the case of kids. Becuase you can easily find toddlers trying to explore their mum’s phone day and night.
It’s more of a real-life issue than digital, affecting people’s minds. It’s expected from companies like Google to take action as their Android platform powers more devices than any other company.
One of the reasons why smartphone addiction has prevailed is social media, i.e., Facebook – the company with the knowledge of how to exploit bugs in the human brain. Late last year, Facebook acknowledged that in some way their social network can have adverse effects on people’s mental health.
It won’t be the first time for Google to do something to prevent people from getting glued to their devices. An app called Family Link was introduced last year that lets parents control their kids’ Android devices. The YouTube Kids app also comes with features to limit children’s screen time.
The exact details of the new features coming are yet to be known. All we can do is wait for CEO Sundar Pichai to describe them in his Google I/O keynote.