I seem to remember magazine adverts in the late 80s when mobile ‘phones were becoming a thing touting the benefits of how you could be at work taking calls from clients when you were ‘off’. I also recall thinking, ’That’s not going to end well.’
It’s a question of balance and how the technology is used isn’t it? I\
My view of my smartphone is that it’s a portable computing device which can also be used for communication. It’s the various apps (music, camera and video player, practice apps which spare the neighbours’ ears etc.) which are the source of its appeal, and being able to instantly look up information which at one time would have meant a trip to a specialist library as I’m an unashamed nerd. I don’t however walk around glued to it, deaf and blind to my surroundings.
Even in the days of landlines only, people still had long vacuous conversations and would clog up ‘phone boxes doing so, so there’d often be long frustrated queues. If you lived in a shared house with a single ‘phone you’d sometimes be compelled to listen to it. It could be as irksome as the inappropriate use of mobile ‘phones now. Some of us just don’t seem to able to help ourselves, but the behaviour just adapts to the technology available.