Scottish Daily Mail

Why using smartphone­s could make us less smart


THEY offer a huge amount of informatio­n at the click of a button – but smartphone­s are making us brainless, research suggests.

Many users have become lazy and rely on internet search engines on their phone rather than their own intelligen­ce to solve problems, the scientists said.

The researcher­s also warned that avoiding using our brains now could cause problems as we get older.

The team, from the University of Waterloo in Ontario, Canada, tested 660 participan­ts for various measures of brain power, such as verbal and numeracy skills, as well as their smartphone habits.

They found that those who were less analytical spent more time on their phones than those with stronger cognitive skills, the journal Computers in Human Behaviour reports.

Co-author Gordon Pennycook said: ‘They may look up informatio­n they actually know or could easily learn, but are unwilling to make the effort to actually think about it.’

He added: ‘Our research provides support for an associatio­n between heavy smartphone use and lowered intelligen­ce. Whether smartphone­s actually decrease intelligen­ce is still an open question that requires future research.’

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