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Designer creates Substitute Phone for when you can’t flick off yourself

The Imitation Game. With marbles

CHANCES ARE that you’re a smartphone addict. It’s okay to admit it. Most of us are – absent-mindedly fiddling with our phones and feeling lost without them.

If you want to cut down your dependency on your fruit or robot based device, an Austrian designer may have the solution.

Klemens Schillinger has created the ‘Substitute Phone’, a sort of stress ball crossed with an abacus that will relieve the tension of those no-phone situations.

In an interview with Dezeen, Schillinger explains that his hope is that the device will help people overcome their addictions, much like swapping a cigarette for a lollipop, Kojak style (though Schillinger claims he was inspired by Umberto Eco, rather than Telly Savalas).

“The touchscreen smartphone has made it possible to ‘escape’ into social media,” he told Dezeen. “We check emails and messages not only on public transport but also in social situations, for example when having drinks with friends,” he explains.

“More and more often one feels the urge to check their phone, even if you are not expecting a specific message or call. These observations inspired the idea of making a tool that would help stop this ‘checking’ behaviour.”

The black polyoxymethylene case has a line of marbles in a choice of arrangements allowing you to swipe across the surface without actually achieving anything remotely useful.

Originally created for a design exhibition in Vienna called ##Offline – Design for the (Good Old) Real World’, this is the second device that Schillinger has created as an attempt to break the smartphone cycle.

The first was the Offline Lamp, which only lights up if you put your smartphone away. Because who needs willpower anyway?

Over the summer researchers proved the Facebook, one of the most popular smartphone apps was a mess of Pavlovian conditioning whilst another group actually proved that you are stupider when there is a smartphone in the room

If you actually want one of these marble box things, then you’re going to be disappointed, as it doesn’t actually exist in retail form. However, there is hope a retail store on Schillinger’s site is “coming soon” so you never know. But it’s sort of not the point – art innit. µ

Source : Inquirer

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