Time Well Spent//

Can a Smartphone Be Mindful?

This company designed a phone for minimal distraction.


Here’s one surefire way to create healthier boundaries with technology: Get a phone that makes it nearly impossible not to live in the moment.

The phone, called Siempo and dubbed “The Phone for Humans” by the company behind it (also called Siempo), just launched on Kickstarter. The phone isn’t a ‘dumbphone’ per se but a pared down version of your standard smartphone. It has a camera, messaging, phone call capability (of course), notes, Google Maps and a few other basics. What it doesn’t have — or allow you to download — are distracting apps like Twitter, Snapchat or Instagram.

As The Verge points out in this piece, the idea behind the phone is that we’re so addicted to our devices that we need technology deliberately designed to help us disconnect. And the phone goes one step further with a surprisingly mindful interface: The home screen prompts you to share an intention, there’s a physical pause button that allows you to mute notifications and a “mindful morning” feature to help you create routines that allow you to start your day how you want, “rather than letting your phone or others decide,” according to the Kickstarter campaign page.

The people behind Siempo say they love technology but want to ensure that our gadgets don’t lead us to “forget our humanity. Or each other’s.” We can get behind that — while it’s a tad sad that many of us can’t muster the willpower to create healthy boundaries with smartphones as they are, this “mindful” phone is a wonderful reminder that technology can be designed in a way that actually helps us unplug.

Read more on The Verge.

Originally published at journal.thriveglobal.com

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