The article “Japan’s smartphone ‘zombies’ wreak havoc on the streets” was posted in AFP on 12 November. The rise of smartphone zombies has been a worldwide phenomenon in which many countries are trying to cope with this 21st Century menace. Singapore is no exception.
It is not an uncommon sight to see pedestrians with their eyes glued to smartphones trying to cross the road when the traffic lights changed, getting in and out of the MRT trains and walking up the escalator. This growing trend has turned Singapore into hazardous hotspots, where “zombified” users are totally oblivious to their surroundings.
Many countries have responded swiftly to this menace: In China, an amusement park in the South Western megacity of Chongqing has divided a pavement within its grounds into two lanes – one sign posted “No mobile phones” and the other “Mobile phone use permitted but all consequences are your responsibility.” In Hong Kong, there are recorded announcement in subway network to warn passengers in Cantonese, Mandarin and English that they are about to step onto an escalator. While our government prohibits the use of handphones while driving, there is no regulation to counter the problem of excessive usage of the handphone in other aspects. The public should be more adequately educated on the danger of excessive smartphone usage.
More countries are spending more on preventing cyber warfare than physical warfare. A virus attack on the network system is enough to make a market crash.
The lack of “human touch” is prevalent. Cafes are coming up with systems where the customers just need to key in their orders via the ipad and the order will be sent to the kitchen. Families are seen to be seated at the dining table each equipped with either a tablet or a smartphone whilst waiting for food to be served.
Social etiquettes of the generations are deteriorating as the world is becoming more advanced.
I fear the day that technology will surpass our human interaction. The world will have a generation of idiots. – Albert Einstein.