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Designer wants to help you beat your smartphone addiction

An Austrian designer wants to help you beat your mobile phone addiction by developing a substitute smartphone.

Klemens Schillinger has developed a series of five different phone-shaped fidget devices, which he says could help you stop you obsessing over swiping to unlock, scrolling or zooming on your handheld device.

Writing on his website, he shared: "Does the following statement sound familiar? You are sitting in the metro and are grabbing your smartphone at the first sign of boredom or because the person next to you just received a message.

"The shape of the Substitute Phone replicates an average smartphone, however, its functions are reduced to the movements we make hundreds of times on a daily basis. The stone beads which are incorporated in the body let you scroll, zoom and swipe. there are no digital functions.

"The object, which some of us describe as a prosthesis, is reduced to nothing but the motions. This calming limitation offers help for smartphone addicts to cope with withdrawal symptoms. The object as a therapeutic approach."

It comes after lampposts in Salzburg were fitted with airbags to stop "smartphone zombies" from bumping into them.

Officials in the Austrian city are worried that people could injure themselves by walking into the permanent fixtures after research carried out locally revealed one in five pedestrians are at risk of being distracted by their phone.

The Board for Traffic Safety (KFV) have advised the local council to do something to help the residents.

Martin Pfanner, KFV expert, said: "We are of the opinion that when people see this very public warning in the form of lamppost airbags of the dangers of not paying attention, they will change their behaviour."

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