Critics of the rapid spread of smartphones point to an addiction of sorts among today's population, a dynamic that is often assumed to be detrimental to their health.
New research actually refutes this claim, suggesting that the growing use of smartphones is actually less unhealthy than common behavior among laptop owners. A study published in the academic journal titled Personal and Ubiquitous Computing shows that, because smartphone users only check their devices for brief periods of time and spread that usage out throughout the day, it may not be as much of a health issue as some have speculated. Comparatively, laptop users spend more time in each session with their device.
In fact, the researchers believe that owning a smartphone could be useful for killing time or intermittent entertainment.
"Smartphone-related habits are not yet perceived as problematic," the study found. "Some users considered it an annoyance, [but] many positive experiences of repetitive uses were mentioned as well, mostly relating to entertainment, time-killing, and diversion."
The benefits of owning a smartphone, and likewise mobile phone accessories, could be driving market growth. According to Strategy Analytics, worldwide smartphone shipments grew 76 percent in the second quarter of 2011, reaching a new record of 110 million units in a single quarter.