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Smartphone disadvantages – 10 reasons against using it

Smartphone Disadvantages – 25 Reasons Not to Use a Smart Mobile Cellphone

Does a smartphone have disadvantages? If you're looking for reasons not to use a smart cell phone, you've come to the right place!

Of course: these handy digital helpers make our everyday lives easier and have countless advantages over the old cell phones, with which you can basically "only" make phone calls and write text messages. Smartphones are, for example, a camera, MP3 player, games console, encyclopaedia, alarm clock, video player and navigation device all in one - and help us to stay in touch with family and friends and keep up to date. So why should we do without smartphones, or at least use them more consciously?

In fact, there are many arguments against it, mainly of a health, but also ethical and ecological nature. In this article, I would like to explain these disadvantages to you so that you can make an informed decision for or against the smartphone. Let's go!

You can find a brief overview here in advance. A smartphone...

  1. can be addictive.
  2. has a large ecological footprint.
  3. can cause concentration problems.
  4. is becoming more and more expensive.
  5. impairs the ability to see.
  6. causes a "smartphone neck".
  7. takes up a lot of space in your pocket.
  8. is a status symbol that can cause bullying.
  9. is not essential for survival.
  10. can cause obsessive-compulsive disorder.
  11. makes us forget how to enjoy the real moment.
  12. causes radiation.
  13. puts you under stress.
  14. is a bacterial slingshot.
  15. stores sensitive data.
  16. makes you lonely.
  17. makes you sleep worse.
  18. can make you seem unlikable.
  19. breaks down pretty quickly.
  20. makes us forget how to switch off.
  21. can put your life in danger.
  22. causes a text message thumb.
  23. has a battery that doesn't last very long.
  24. makes us forget how to appreciate nature.
  25. has alternatives.

Contra arguments: 25 disadvantages of smartphones that everyone should know about

The smartphone is like so many other new inventions - they come onto the market and make everyday life easier. This was also the case after the introduction of plastic, for example. Plastic has soooo many advantagesthat the disadvantages were simply no longer taken into account. But over time - with the plastic waste on the beaches, the difficulty of recycling and the harmful toxins - the disadvantages inevitably became apparent. Plastic disadvantages noticeable and visible.

One should learn from mistakes. That's why we are now taking a critical look at how we use our smartphones. You should definitely be aware of the following disadvantages of these small, technical all-rounders!

1. a smartphone can be addictive

I noticed it in myself: the longer and more often I used my smartphone, the more dependent I felt on it. Over time, I have somehow no longer complete and felt extremely restless when I didn't have it with me.

Added to this is the reflex-like, constant reaching for the smart cell phone to get new information and stimuli - the biggest Danger came from the social media from. I have counted: I had looked at my cell phone a whole 70 times a dayeven though it hadn't made a peep. A genuine addiction to new stimuli - and a serious disadvantage of a smartphone that can have serious psychological consequences.

Tip: Does all this sound familiar to you? Then learn in the linked article how to create a Successfully combating cell phone addiction can!

2. a smartphone has a large social and ecological footprint

The ecological footprint of a smartphone is gigantic. It requires the use of limited natural resources to produce it. This makes the device very expensive in relation to the very short average usage time. Extremely inefficient.

In addition, the so-called rare earths in smartphones Long transport routes have behind them. Cobalt (especially for batteries), for example, usually comes from the Congo and is often extracted there under exploitative circumstances (including child labor).

The devices are then processed in South Korea, China or the USA. And then they still have to be transported to Europe. These are pretty good reasons to keep your Use your smartphone as sustainably as possible or to do without it altogether. Don't you think?

Tip: By switching to an environmentally friendly mobile phone contract, you can make your cell phone a little greener. In the young segment of mobile communications offers from EDEKA smart for example, the focus is on recycling old appliances, repairing smartphones and using renewable energies.

3. a smartphone can cause concentration problems

Constantly reaching for the glowing, beeping, ringing or vibrating smartphone changes our brain. The Regular distraction in combination with the reward of new stimuli and information is not without consequences for our ability to concentrate.

This disadvantage can particularly serious consequences for the development of childrenbut also, of course, on the private or professional lives of adults, for example. A conscious approach or even a Digital Detox can then help to again to become significantly more concentrated.

4. a smartphone is becoming more and more expensive.

Prices around the 1000 euros is now quite normal for a new smartphone. With higher performance, you can easily pay over 2000 euros for it. Then there are the costs of use. Mobile phone contracts are also becoming more expensive - and don't forget the in-app purchases you make from time to time. This is a disadvantage of the smartphone that takes your well-earned money.

5. a smartphone impairs vision.

Visual disturbances due to the use of smartphones

Extensive studies show that the Frequent concentration on the nearby smartphone screen The task of looking over longer distances literally falls far too short.

Muscles and optic nerve become weaker. As a result, visual acuity decreases noticeably. In addition, the eyes flicker and tire much more quickly. All the more reason to leave your smartphone at home more often and use your own Consciously reduce screen time.

6. a smartphone causes a "smartphone neck".

Anyone looking at a smartphone screen usually automatically adopts a forward-bent head posture. This increases the load on the spine, which is why the so-called "smartphone neck" develops over time. This Complaints in the area of the cervical spine as a result of smartphone use, are often also described with the term "cell phone neck".

7. a smartphone takes up a lot of space in your pocket

The number of pockets and their space are limited. Smartphones are considerably larger than the "old bones" of the past. As a result, they take up more space and bulge out your trouser pockets. For many, this smartphone disadvantage may not be serious, but I still wanted to mention it.

8. a smartphone is a status symbol that can cause bullying

Young people in particular are prepared to spend large portions of their savings on a smartphone - and want to Always the latest model have. The smartphone has become a status symbol alongside expensive watches and clothes, among other things. As a result, bullying is more common, especially at school or on social media, if you only have an old or simply not the latest smartphone model.

Added to this is the increase in the so-called Cyber Bullying (threatening, insulting, exposing or harassing people online) via the use of social media with the smartphone itself.

Tip: What you are fundamentally against Bullying in children or also do against hate on the net you can find out in the linked blog posts.

9. a smartphone is not essential for survival

Another disadvantage of smartphones is that, on sober reflection, you don't need them to survive. After all, previous generations didn't need it either. Experience has shown that a conversation with our grandparents can reveal a lot of useful advice.

Tip: Our Grandparents have countless sustainable life hacksthat we can all benefit from. I present the most important ones in the linked article.

10. a smartphone can cause obsessive-compulsive disorder

I already mentioned that I felt restless when my smartphone wasn't near me. But many people actually suffer from Anxiety disorders when they have not looked at the device for a certain period of time.₂ There is even a technical term for this: nomophobia. ("No-Mobile-Phone-Phobia")

Good to know: Smartphones can even cause paranoia. For example, you may feel persecuted. Or believe the smartphone (and the content on the web) more than, for example, medical professionals. Logically, this disadvantage can also have serious consequences for your own health.

11. a smartphone makes us forget to enjoy the real moment

Smartphone disadvantage: loneliness and loss of friendships

The addiction to new stimuli and information via the device means we miss out on unique moments or only enjoy them to a lesser extent. I think this is a major disadvantage of smartphones! After all, we are at risk of miss our own life, for example, by spending far too much time following other people's lives on social media.

12. a smartphone causes radiation

According to the IARC (WHO's cancer research agency), radiofrequency radiation from smartphones is considered a "possibly carcinogenic".₃ Accordingly, the radiation emitted by our digital everyday helper is also one of the disadvantages.

13. a smartphone puts you under stress

As mentioned, a smartphone can make you feel restless and quite simply stressed. This feeling is mainly caused by the Constant availability and the huge range of possible uses and the simple distraction of apps or push notifications. You are regularly exposed to new stimuli and interrupted in other, everyday tasks.

14. a smartphone is a bacteria sink.

What else speaks against a smartphone? It's a real bacteria spinner. And no wonder! After all, we transmit Bacteria, germs and other pathogens on the display surface with every tap. We also hold the device to our ear or mouth. Of course, this increases the risk of illness enormously, which is why regular cleaning is definitely recommended.

15. a smartphone stores sensitive data

Many people rely totally on their smartphone. Among other things, this damages their mental faculties. However, it is particularly hard when you lose all the important data that is stored exclusively on the device. Or if they in the wrong hands due to a hacker attack advised.

There is also the disadvantage that your Usage data automatically to third partiessuch as the manufacturer of the device or the applications used. This is why it is particularly important to consider the data protection settings.

16. a smartphone makes you lonely

Due to the frequent use of a smartphone we automatically exchange real closeness for virtual closeness. You may have a lot of friends on Facebook in the digital world - but in real life there are usually far fewer.

You simply believe that you are not alone, because for the first time in your life you don't have to be alone and you can always write to someone. But sn the end, you usually lose social contacts and friendships..

17. a smartphone makes you sleep worse

Although there may be some apps that track your sleep and give you help to a better sleep the smartphone is basically a real sleep killer! Not only because of the stress described above, but also because of the blue light from the display, which has an effect on our bodies that is similar to that of daylight. Ultimately, it suppresses the production of the sleep hormone melatonin and disrupts the sleep rhythm.₄

18. a smartphone can make you look unappealing

We just talked about the disadvantage of the smartphone making you lonelier. Of course, this could also be because it makes you look unappealing.

This usually happens quite automatically. For example, by constantly "playing" on the cell phone, while sitting at the table with others and actually wanted to talk. This suggests to the others, that you would rather be somewhere elsethan at the table.

19. a smartphone breaks down pretty quickly

Smart cell phones break pretty quickly

In my teenage years I had a Nokia 3210. For 8 years I actually had one and the same cell phone for calling and texting. I haven't had to repair it once in that time. I probably could have used it for another 10 years if the lure of a smartphone hadn't been so great at the time.

The service life of the mobile everyday helpers is nowadays only 2.5 years on average. Even if they could last longer, at some point there are simply no more updates from the manufacturer. However, the usage time is usually so short because the display and battery break quickly or because you think you have to have the latest model.

Good to know: Smartphones are often deliberately built to break faster. This so-called planned obsolescence Apple, Samsung and Co are regularly accused of this.₅

20. a smartphone makes us forget to switch off

Why it might be better not to have a smartphone? Because our mental health suffers extremelythat we are constantly longing to reach for our cell phones.

As we constantly want to reward ourselves with the next stimulus, our Attention span getting shorter and shorter. We simply unlearn, just to really switch off. This gives our brain less time to recover and process what we have absorbed.

21. a smartphone can put you in mortal danger

One potentially life-threatening disadvantage of smartphones is that they get your full attention. It also gets this from many people when they are traveling by car or crossing the road. Or when they want to take a very special selfie on a slope. Accordingly, addiction to the smartphone can also lead to death.

22. a smartphone causes a text message thumb

More and more people have permanent joint problems hand or complain of a painful hand injury. Tendinitis. This is often due to excessive use of the thumb on the smartphone display. In this case, doctors refer to it as SMS thumb.

23 A smartphone has a battery that doesn't last very long

By this smartphone disadvantage, I don't mean the shorter service life, but the shorter battery life. Due to the device's wide range of uses and background processes, it simply drains faster than was the case with older cell phones. Who Save electricity wants, therefore, has another reason to do without the smartphone.

24. a smartphone makes us forget to appreciate nature

Everyone knows that the Time outside in nature is healthy for us is. With the smartphone, however, we have an everyday helper in our hands that, in theory, allows us to use the Do not leave house at all to have to.

The addiction to short-term stimuli and new entertainment and distraction leaves many people rather reach for the cell phone when boredthan going out into the fresh air. With all the short-term feelings of happiness, it's easy to forget how important it is for your own well-being to spend time in nature.

25. a smartphone has alternatives

Of course, we are (have been made) dependent on smartphones to a certain extent. For example, you seem to need it to generate a TAN for online banking, to pay for something or to book a ticket. But of course you can also do this without a smartphone, even if these change is now difficult for many people is likely.

For example, you can make calls using your landline phone or you can use a Older cell phone modelwhich only enables the basic functions of "making calls" and "sending text messages". Tickets are purchased in paper form, alternative TAN options are used for online banking - and you can also pay with cash. In any case, it is not impossible to manage without a smartphone.

Be aware of the disadvantages of smartphones and weigh them up

Use smartphone more consciously

So you don't actually need a smartphone. However, we are now used to the many advantages, which is why it seems difficult to use it less or not at all.

However, you now know the main disadvantages of smartphones and can make an informed decision for or against the device. Be aware that smartphones are neither environmentally friendly, nor particularly social, nor healthy for you. And that you are not completely dependent on the device.

So you can get rid of it altogether or at least use it more consciously and reduced to the absolute, essential basics. I have decided to use my Use smartphones as sustainably and consciously as possible. I've had the same device for five years and treat it with care. I use it as little as possible in everyday life - I've deleted apps like Facebook and Instagram. I've definitely felt better since then - and I'm convinced that it will also help you to counteract the disadvantages of the smartphone.

Do you have any questions, tips or your own experiences with the downsides and shortcomings of smartphones that you would like to share? Then please write me a comment under this post.

Remain critical and conscious in your use of technology,

Christoph from CareElite - Plastic-free living

PS: The smartphone is also a contributor to the psychological phenomenon of the "Fear Of Missing Out", the fear of missing something. How to overcome the so-called Fighting FOMO you can find out in the next linked blog article.


₁ G. Tosini, I. Ferguson, K. Tsubota (2016): Effects of blue light on the circadian system and eye physiology, available at [27.12.2022].

₂ S. Gonçalves, P. C. Dias, A. Correia (2020): Nomophobia and lifestyle: Smartphone use and its relationship to psychopathologies, available at [27.12.2022].

₃ Federal Office for Radiation Protection: Classification of radiofrequency electromagnetic fields by the IARC (as of 30.08.2022), available at [27.12.2022].

₄ Stern: The smartphone is the enemy - medical expert gives tips for good sleep, available at [27.12.2022].

₅ Utopia: Planned obsolescence: This is how Apple tricks (as of 09.02.2016), available at [27.12.2022].

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* Links with asterisks are so-called Affiliate linksIf you click on it and buy something, you automatically and actively support my work with, as I receive a small share of the proceeds - and of course nothing changes in the product price. Many thanks for your support and best regards, Christoph!

Christoph Schulz

Christoph Schulz

I'm Christoph, an environmental scientist and author - and here at CareElite I'm campaigning against plastic waste in the environment, climate change and all the other major environmental problems of our time. Together with other environmentally conscious bloggers, I want to give you tips & tricks for a naturally healthy, sustainable life as well as your personal development.

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