CC 2.0 by Gonzalo Baeza, Flickr

Shareholders ask Apple to lead fight in smartphone addiction in children

Two Apple investors are advocating for research based modifications to the iPhone in order to “help parents control and limit phone use more easily and to study the impact of overuse on mental health”.

There is no doubt that the iPhone is in popular demand. According to USA TODAY “the iPhone was the best-selling tech product of 2017, selling more units than the No. 2 through No. 5 products combined.” When it comes to children smartphones and tablets can become their first taste of addiction as, “it does not teach them moderation, impulse-control, or how to challenge themselves, which are traits of an addictive personality.”

JANA Partners LLC and the California State Teachers’ Retirement System who collectively own Apple Inc. shares of approximately two billion US dollars published an open letter to Apple hoping to “start of a constructive and well-informed dialogue” that will propel Apple to create “more choices and options” for customers which will “enhance long-term value for all shareholders” and help “protect the next generation of leaders, innovators, and customers tomorrow”.

The investors pleaded with Apple to implement a number of recommendations such as; working with an Expert Committee to analyse “ongoing developments in technology, including how such developments are integrated into the lives of children and teenagers”, creating research based tools and options for parents and “hiring or assigning a high-level executive to monitor this issue and issuing annual progress reports, just as Apple does for environmental and supply chain issues.”

To read Open Letter click here.

Author: Julia Zvobgo

Julia Zvobgo is a Cultural Anthropologist. She is also the Community Manager and Events Manager of Child in the City.

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