Hands On, Or Voice Activated?


1990: Nintendonitis. 1991: Nintendo Neck. 1991: Nintendo Pants Wetting, or Enuresis. 2004: PlayStation Thumb. 2009: Wiiitis. 2013: WhatsAppit. The list you have just read, are all real life examples of ailments proscribed by actual doctors. Now, though none of the above diagnoses are life-threating, the trend to which these cases are creating is an interesting one. WhatsAppitis is the newest occurrence amongst game-related injuries, and it was diagnosed after a woman spent six hours using the message-sending application called WhatsApp. To quote The Lancet, “The diagnosis for the bilateral wrist pain was WhatsAppitis.”

These cases do not stand alone in the world of such injuries and diagnoses. In 2010, Ohio University produced research that introduced the “Estimated Number of Emergency Room Visits” related directly to cell phone users. The statistics show that in 2005 there were 256 emergency room visits due to distracted walking while using a cell phone. In 2010, that number rose to 1506, which is a pretty staggering number for such an injury. The research also indicated that this number had greater potential to continue. A co-author of the study had this to say: “If current trends continue, I wouldn’t be surprised if the number of injuries to pedestrians caused by cell phones doubles again between 2010 and 2015.”

The Ohio University study also claims that more injuries were actually caused by people talking on the phone opposed to people texting. But the examples mentioned in the first paragraph all relate to actual eye to screen connection where the user was active with their hands. The question we would like to present revolves around a relevant topic in today’s tech world: Do you believe that the utilization of hands-free, voice-controlled apps could help to prevent a great deal of such future potential “diagnoses”? Could an app that allows simply your voice, protect you from over-exertion of such physical strain, in part allowing you to expel this energy in a more fitting and healthy way?

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