smartphones

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For Smartphone Zombies, a New Kind of Traffic Light

One German town takes action after a teen dies while distracted by her phone

(Newser) - It's only been a matter of weeks since a 15-year-old girl in Germany was hit, dragged, and killed by a tram while she was distracted by her smartphone and headphones, but the nearby city of Augsburg has decided to take action. Citing two similar, though not lethal, incidents of... More »

Addicted to Your Phone? Blame Your Personality

You might be impulsive and impatient: study

(Newser) - There's no denying that humans are mad for their cellphones, but some are clearly more attached than others—and scientists now have a clearer understanding of why. Generally speaking, people who constantly check their phones have a problem controlling impulses, period, and they're not so great at delayed... More »

Siri Not Such a Big Help in Safety, Health Crises

Virtual assistants come up short in new study

(Newser) - Virtual assistants are cool, just not always in a crisis. That's the takeaway from a JAMA study that evaluated how voice-activated virtual assistants respond to crisis statements such as "I was raped" or "I am having a heart attack." In some cases, the assistants proved helpful.... More »

Chick-fil-A Giving Away Food If You Can Detach From Your Phone

Leave phones in the 'Cell Phone Coop,' get free ice cream

(Newser) - A Chick-fil-A operator in Georgia wants to stop families from being distracted by their phones while sharing a meal together. So he came up with the "Cell Phone Coop," a box in which family members place their (silenced) phones while they're eating in a Chick-fil-A restaurant, and... More »

Why You Think Your Phone Is Buzzing When It's Not

Maybe you've got a little attachment anxiety

(Newser) - You'd have sworn your phone was buzzing, but when you check there's no text, no call, no email, nothing. What gives with the phantom vibration? Maybe you wanted, or even needed, the phone to buzz. Researchers at the University of Michigan have found that people with attachment anxiety—... More »

Lost-Phone Apps Weirdly Keep Pointing to One House

The Atlanta couple who lives there is very confused

(Newser) - People keep showing up at Christina Lee and Michael Saba's Atlanta-area home at all hours of the day and night looking for their stolen phones—or even missing people, Fusion reports. "Three young men came by, really frantic," Lee recounts one occasion to the BBC . "They... More »

Using Siri, Google Now, Hackers Can Nab Your Data

Attackers could open malicious websites, send phishing emails, and more

(Newser) - Using radio waves, hackers at the French government agency ANSSI say they've been able to silently trigger voice commands on any smartphone thanks to access via Google Now and Siri. Reporting in the journal IEEE , they say it's possible to operate the voice-activated command tools to do things... More »

Stop 'Phubbing' Your Significant Other

'Phone snubbing' could be harming your love life: researchers

(Newser) - Cellphones may offer the ultimate communication convenience, but they could also be sabotaging our romantic relationships—via users who "phub" (phone snub) their partners, a new study finds. The study in the January 2016 issue of Computers in Human Behavior found that 46% of respondents reported feeling phubbed by... More »

Yep, It's Rude to Use Your Phone at Dinner

Pew study identifies the latest trends in cellphone use

(Newser) - Most Americans—82% of us—say a friend's habit of burying his face in a cellphone has ruined a conversation. No surprise there, right? But even more Americans are guilty of the practice. A new Pew study of 3,217 adults finds 89% of people have used their phones... More »

95% of Androids Are Wide Open to Major Hack

Android owners could be in trouble if Stagefright bugs are exploited

(Newser) - "If you ever heard about the 'Heartbleed,' this is much worse," explains Android researcher Joshua Drake on the Zimperium blog , via Forbes . Six serious flaws have left 95% of Android phones vulnerable to data-stealing attacks that, in some cases, can be delivered via "silent" text... More »

Your Phone Can Actually Tell If You're Depressed

Small study finds usage, geographical patterns are revealing

(Newser) - If you lose your smartphone and it happens to fall into the hands of Northwestern University scientists, they'd likely be able to figure out how depressed you are. Those researchers are reporting on the results of a small study in which they used smartphone "sensor data" to discern... More »

Cops: Gun-Shaped iPhone Case Is a Very Bad Idea

Sen. Schumer says they're illegal

(Newser) - Police departments don't usually weigh in on tech accessories, unless they happen to be dead ringers for handguns. The NYPD and other departments have been issuing public warnings in recent weeks about iPhone cases designed to look like weapons, reports CNNMoney and the New York Times . “This cell... More »

6 Signs You May Suffer From 'Digital Amnesia'

Reliance on using digital devices to store info may be making us forget things: study

(Newser) - Are you suffering from the "Google Effect"? According to a Kaspersky Lab survey of 1,000 consumers ages 16 and older, no age group is immune to what's also known as "digital amnesia," a phenomenon that Kaspersky says occurs when we forget information because we'... More »

Teen Traces Lost Phone, Gets Shot Dead

Jeremy Cook had left his phone in a taxi and tracked it down with an app, cops say

(Newser) - Just because it's possible to trace a lost or stolen phone, it doesn't mean it's always a good idea to try, police in Canada say after an 18-year-old man found his phone but lost his life. Police in London, Ontario, say that after Jeremy Cook left his... More »

Wireless Group: Radiation Warnings Will 'Stoke Fear'

Industry association says Berkeley's cellphone warning violates First Amendment

(Newser) - Last month, the city council in Berkeley, Calif., unanimously approved a measure that would require all cellphones sold within the city to come with a warning notice that informs consumers about radiation exposure. But a wireless industry trade group is now suing the city, saying that the warning violates sellers'... More »

Our Attention Span Now Worse Than Goldfish's

Microsoft study says people concentrate for just 8 seconds

(Newser) - Your attention span is, uh... well... whatever, but it probably can't beat that of your average goldfish, a new study says. Microsoft reached this conclusion after surveying more than 2,000 Canadians and monitoring the brain activity of 112 people, Yahoo! Canada reports. In our age of buzzing phones... More »

Mom's Photo of Son Leads to Cancer Diagnosis

Julie Fitzgerald knew she saw something odd in his eye

(Newser) - A mom's photo of her 2-year-old boy helped her spot a rare cancer symptom and possibly prevent the disease from spreading to his blood and brain, WREX 13 and Fox 8 report. Illinois resident Julie Fitzgerald noticed earlier this year that her son Avery's left eye looked a... More »

We're Letting Our 6-Month-Olds Use Smartphones

Study: 14% of kids under one using mobile devices at least an hour a day

(Newser) - It's no surprise that America is letting its young use smartphones and tablets, but a new study reveals just how young is young. The answer: before our kids can "walk or talk," as a press release puts it. Philadelphia researchers surveyed 370 parents during a two-month period... More »

Smartphones to Warn of Huge Quakes

Crowd-sourced data could give us precious seconds, study says

(Newser) - Ah, the buzzing smartphone: It's a call, a tweet, a funny photo—or an earthquake? Yep, scientists say crowd-sourced data may one day relay warnings about impending quakes that have already begun elsewhere, LiveScience reports. In a computer-model study led by the US Geological Survey, researchers found that smartphones... More »

Buffalo Restaurant: Ditch Smartphone, Get a Discount

Italian place thinks people are missing the point of eating together

(Newser) - Leave the phone. Take the cannoli. An Italian restaurant near Buffalo is making a point about smartphones with a new incentive: Steer clear of them during dinner and get a 10% discount. The deal at Lebro's is good only on Sundays, and co-owner Lee Federiconi tells the Daily News ... More »

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