Hello everyone. This article is going to be a bit different than our previous works. Mostly as you can see, we write articles for app developers and designers to help them improve their craft.

It always focuses on how they can provide more value to their clients to bring in more revenue, yada-yada, you know the whole shebang.

Today though, our article will focus more on the “ethical” aspect of app design and development. Mainly, the idea of “App addiction” and what we can do as app developers to fight it.

I know, it seems very counter-intuitive. Apps by nature act like gambling machines that rely on the dopamine hits of their customer to get money. They are addictive because they have to be addictive.

Firstly, the above paragraph isn’t as bad as the news makes it out to be.

Whenever we talk about the good things that apps have done to our community, one question looms over us every time. And that is, “What about those people who are addicted to mobile apps/addicted to gaming, etc.”

Now hidden within this loose statement, is a lot of nuances. And it’s practically begging to be discovered by people, but as no one bats an eye, this is something we need to follow up with.

The problem with the modern panic around the phrase “Mobile addiction/App addiction/Game addiction” is nothing more than a distraction from an underlying problem that needs to be explored.

These are serious issues, and these issues need to be dealt with as they are seriously affecting the lives of those who are around us. And I don’t mean that lightly. But before we start talking about addiction, we have to talk about mass hysteria and the hype surrounding the addiction.

So, throw down your pitchfork, circle around the fire, bring in a tub of ice cream and let’s tackle this beast together.

1) There Is No Evil Conglomerate App Developing Company That Wants to Control You

In today’s world where sensationalist journalism is mainstream journalism, buzz words are anybody’s game. One of the most famous conspiracy theories is that our phones are designed to control us and make us do our master’s bidding never think freely till we reach a state where the characters from the novel 1984 start to pity us.

They bring this out to be a worldwide conspiracy.

That is not the case so you can calm yourself.

This is kind of ridiculous when we see that there are more deaths in the world thanks to car accidents than due to app/video game addiction. But you don’t see any newspaper writing a piece to declare war on cars now, do you?

Now, with that being said, there are certain apps like Facebook and some other social media sites that are designed to be addictive, but most of the apps you see on the store aren’t like that.

To create an app that copies Facebook’s level of addiction requires a huge chunk of capital investment in research, which frankly most app developers or their clients don’t have.

So, no, apps developing companies aren’t some mega-conglomerates who will suck you dry (Most of them at least)

But that still doesn’t mean that apps are perfect. And here’s the thing. It’s okay if your app isn’t perfect. It doesn’t have to be perfect if it’s a good app that provides decent value while being authentic to its ethics.

As mentioned before, people who are vehemently opposed to this idea will not keep quiet about it. But at least we can accept the high road and proclaim that our apps aren’t perfect. This way the conversation can move forward to its next level, which is.

2) App/mobile/game Addiction and Its Impact on the New Generation

These days the news is full of sensationalist pieces that children are spending way too much time online and, on their phones, and that this is an epidemic that will engulf the new generation.

The thing is, they aren’t wrong. I mean obviously, the addiction part isn’t true, and the level of sensationalism it deserves is also exaggerated, but this is very much a real issue.

Not a day goes by when you don’t hear someone’s mom take away their child’s phone and ordered them to go outside and play. This seems to be the only tactic that somehow parents know, but as always, they miss the mark.

Here's the thing. Whatever “addiction” these T.V. news channels blabber on about concerning mobile apps, they seem to forget that they are on T.V.

T.V. itself was a medium that was considered an addicting tool and is now considered part of mainstream tech for decades.

The truth is that mobile compulsion in children is due to parents giving their child a mobile as a substitute as they are busy dealing with the burden that comes from taking care of the kid.

Yes, I said that. And I am not afraid of saying it.

There are many ways in which the parents can help their child learn about the responsible use of technology. This is how we can train the next generation what we should have learned in the first place.

Conclusion: What Should App Developers Do?

My dear friends. You have to focus on building a COMPELLING APP. That is what your main goal should be. Be it a dating app, video-sharing app, meditation app, or video game app.

The thought police might not listen to the reason the app addiction isn’t the true case, but it will not be able to stop you from shining.

Which is something that as top mobile app developers you already know how to do.

Thank you for reading this article. We will see you, next time.

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