Obsessively checking your BlackBerry? You're not alone

By Michelle Haag on 12 Aug 2011 10:33 am EDT
BlackBerry Torch

It's no secret that people get easily addicted to their smartphones. Heck, our site IS called CrackBerry after all! Recently a study on this growing trend was conducted by a team at the Helsinki Institute for Information Technology (HIIT) and Intel Labs. Users in the US and Finland were studied and the results show that users obsessively check their devices for email, social media, and news all throughout their waking hours. It was found that typical checking lasts less than 30 seconds, often involving nothing besides simply unlocking the device and accessing one application. And when applications are integrated, for example augmenting the user's contact list with a foursquare type app, the user began repeatedly checking that application.

"By making interesting content quickly accessible, developers are on the one hand making the device more useful - but, on the other hand, the habits that emerge essentially conquer more and more of a person’s free time," says Tye Rattenbury, formerly of Intel Labs.

While the people in the study didn't feel that they had an addiction to checking their smartphones, they did feel maybe they overuse them. Apps such as BerryBuzz are designed to help identify what's going on in your device without having to pick it up, but that's really no different from just picking it up. With phones turning into smartphones, and smartphones into superphones, it's really no surprise we rarely put them down anymore.

How do you feel? Do you check your BlackBerry too often, maybe even when the LED isn't flashing? When are you most likely to check for messages, RSS feeds, Twitter, Facebook, etc?

Source: TG Daily

Michelle Haag Michelle Haag "@_Miche11e_ and C0001B3B5" 1214 (articles) 1695 (forum posts)

Reader comments

Obsessively checking your BlackBerry? You're not alone


i randomly check my BB quite often...even if the led isnt flashing i still check some applications that i have the set not to flash(like FB)...it is a habit for me

"Pick me up, you know you want to" that is what my Torch is always saying. Whether it's to check my roleplaying sites or to open the message app or to load crackyberry.com for the thousands time in the hour. It's got me hooked like a fish. When I have to leave my blackberry charging or just let it be, it kills me inside.

Altough i dont see myself as ano addicted,looking deeply into my smartphone habits i see i really am ano addicted.trough work day i noticed i turn on my screen just to check if something has poped off even when i know berrybuzz is installed lol
Even in my way back home,listening music trough bb i check the screen regulary.
I am a berry adicted and I love it =p
Berry salutations to you all

I used to be like that. Heck, at one time it was rare my phone wasn't in my hand as it stayed there even when I wasn't actively using it, in lieu of putting it the holster or chest pocket. Today though, after 5-6 years of having a smartphone, I usually don't give it a second thought unless I hear an audible notification or the led is blinking.

I feel like I only check my phone compulsively when my led light starts flashing.

I check my phone mainly for bbm text messages. Fbook and twitter

All my IMs , Email accounts are colour coded by BerryBuzz premium. Yes i check it all the time, even when there's nothing to check

Great post Michelle! My friends make fun of me b/c I usually have the Ari Gold deathgrip on my BlackBerry no matter what I'm doing and where ever I may be!

I'm constantly checking Crackberry on my phone just so I can get all BB breaking news as soon as it's released.

"Hi, my name is aztek13 and I'm a BlackBerry addict. (Group: "Hi Aztek") I pick up my phone at random, even when the led isn't flashing. I check this website frequently, especially for new themes. My 9700 is always beside me. I hear it speak to me. It tells me to pick it up. Ah, that feels good to get that out." ;)

I think this is an important topic for discussion. I think there are many times....

..Wait, hold on...My LED is going off, I need to check my mail

When I had my iphone I could care less (I would have 15 to 20 unchecked messages at once sometimes) but with my 9800 I check this thing like crazy and the same goes with my wife.

While this is certainly relevant to Blackberrys, i don't believe it is unique to BBs. We own 2 iPhones, a Galaxy, and my Torch in our family. All of us are constantly checking our devices. It has gotten so bad that i banned cell phones from the dinner table as i found everyone was paying more attention to the phone than to the people at the table. All this did was get everyone eating as fast as possible so they can get back to their phones. So now i just put up with them at the dinner table and give mean looks to anyone who reaches for the phone while eating. And just so there is no misunderstanding, I'm as bad as everyone else. BTW, to all the new BB owners (the new devices that just debuted), i hope you are all enjoying them and the improved experience. I'm still very happy with my Torch and will wait for the next round of devices that hopefully showcase QNX and integrate with my Playbook a little better.

I'm pretty much the exact opposite. I have friends constantly annoyed with me because I don't check my phone very often and sometimes miss texts. Email, social media, and the like I usually just handle on a computer if I have the choice.

hi, I'm DaDaThePanda and I'm a bb-aholic. I'm trying really hard to give up the habit but the news of the Bold 9930 hitting Sprint Aug 21st makes me relapse.

I can say that I am addicted to my BB. I'm always on it, mostly checking the news and weather and of course for going on crackberry.com, I luv me some crackberry. I'm alsways on BBM. I luv using BBM to chat with family from my native Dominican Republic. No international texting fees for me :-) I'm probably one of the few people that don't have a Facebook or Twitter account, please don't laugh, so I don't check either being that I don't have them. But I'm always also checking the different forums I'm a member of, and I luv using the ebay app and also my bank's mobile banking app.

I often check my phone without having any notifications but half of my checks are excused becuase of phantom vibrates I feel from wearing the hip holster while at work.

I check my BlackBerry all the time... Mostly to find out when the F*** the Verizon 9930 will ever be released

Wow, seems like I got all the symptoms, including the phantom vibrate that was discussed a while back. My BB is glued to my hands. I got raked over the coals about 2 years ago by a Manager for checking my email during the meeting. So guess what i did. Left the company and started my own. So my trusty BB is always with me.

My BB has always let me stay ahead of other competitors through one thing---BBM.

I guess this alone makes me a crackberry addict. i always check that damn LED, that's the first thing i do when i wake up; the last thing i do before going to bed; hell, i always check for it when i wake up in the middle of the night; sometimes get woken up by the little sound my berry makes when i get a notification in the middle of the night, ....and check my berry while half asleep.

I am a happy berry user since 2009 and since then i've probably given up months worth of shut eye because of that damn LED.

I got an Android (I know....idiot, I regret it. Good phone, desire z but its not a berry) but Im addicted to checking it and I check crackberry so much. Just to see what Im missing.

i've been using a bb since the 8900 premiered on tmo back in 2008... prior to that i was using the original iphone which i did not check nearly as much. at this point, my bb checking is tapering down a bit, but only because none of the people who are currently bbming/smsing/emailing me are as important as the ones for whom i would obsessively check my phone over...

i have had a few ex's and friends who got really annoyed by how often i checked my phone

Hello, I'm Chaviv, and I'm a BB Addict...ahh...that felt good.....

Seriously tho, I do find myself checking my BB for BBMs, SMS, and email throughout the day...

I feel like I only check my phone compulsively when my led light starts flashing.

I check my phone mainly for bbm text messages. Fbook and twitter

For a few months I lived without service idk how I dod it being that I was addicted to it. I owould still carry my torch everyday to work even though it didn't work lol but atleast now and then I could get wi-fi.

i have berrybuzz... fully configured... still check my blackberry every couple minutes, blinking LED or not....

The LED on the Torch is a little smaller and not as visible in comparison to the Bold 9700, which is why I keep checking my phone.