Teen smartphone addiction on the rise

Teen smartphone addiction on the rise

SEOUL - About 1 in 4 Korean teenagers may be addicted to smartphones, the Korean government said Monday.

A recent survey by the Ministry of Science, ICT and Future Planning showed that 25.5 per cent of all teenagers were categorized in 2013 as at risk of addiction, meaning their lives are disrupted by excessive use of mobile devices.

The number of potential teen addicts increased 7.1 percentage points from the year before, while their adult counterparts decreased 0.2 percentage point to 8.9 per cent.

The data also showed that 7 per cent of the total population is classed as at risk of Internet addiction, a 0.2 percentage point drop from the year before. The proportion of teens classed as potential Internet addicts, however, increased 1 percentage point to 11.7 per cent.

The government said it would introduce preventive measures against rising smartphone addiction among students, such as launching education programs warning the hazards of addictions for students of all levels.

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