There isn’t a single part of life that isn’t touched by tech. We’ve gone from flipping wrinkled pages to swiping. From recording tunes as they crackle on-air to listening on-demand. And you’re probably near a screen (you’re here, after all).
Sure, technology empowers us to do so many incredible things. We can now get groceries without ever leaving home and save lives through the use of 3D-printed organs. But, as tech evolves, there’s one thing that’s increasingly difficult to do: unplug.
Do We Really Need Another Screen?
This week, Google announced the new Pixel tablet, which will be coming sometime in 2023. During the launch, the tech giant highlighted how the Pixel tablet will “reimagine how a tablet can actually be helpful all the time in your home.”
According to Google, “tablets feel out of place in our homes. Hidden away in a drawer, misplaced, presenting a tripping hazard, or just out of battery.”
Google isn’t wrong. I myself have a tablet that’s out of commission until I feel the need to peruse Amazon or read on something other than my phone. But I’m okay with that. Why? Because the rest of the day, I’m working on a computer screen, scrolling social media, checking the weather app—the list goes on.
So many screens are already permanent fixtures in our daily lives. Do we really need another one?
Digital Overwhelm Is a Real Thing
Products such as blue light-blocking glasses are readily available to help with eye strain. And standing desks are popular for preventing and soothing back pain while we work. While these are fantastic inventions to improve our tech experience, are they enough?
There’s a deeper issue here that goes beyond the physical. The truth is, some of us are just plain overwhelmed.
A recent survey by Deloitte found that the average home in the US has 22 devices. The same survey found that 24% of consumers are overwhelmed by the devices and subscriptions they have to manage.
It makes sense. While we’re typing messages to co-workers in Slack, we’re also video chatting via Zoom. And while we’re scrolling Pinterest to find tonight’s dinner recipe, we’re also searching Netflix for a new series to binge.
In this always-on world we live in, it can sometimes feel as if we’re stuck in an episode of The Jetsons (without the flying cars). What can we do? Perhaps the simple answer is to unplug wherever and whenever possible.
Shut the Drawer and Walk Away
Beyond our screens, the real world awaits. There are board games, s’mores, and bad jokes. There are sunsets, dogs, and the seven wonders.
While we may need our smartphones or computers daily, there’s plenty of life to enjoy beyond them. And if truly living requires us to put our tablets in our drawers for a little while, so be it.
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