Can consumers leave the phone behind?

August 11, 2014
2 min read

The New Forest National Park in southern England is trying a new scheme – called the Tech Creche – to help visitors to take a break from their gadgets and enjoy the world around them.

The Tech Creche allows visitors to leave computers, cell phones, iPads and car keys with the New Forest Travel Concierge, who then provide the visitors with an open top bus for travel to the park itself. For people who are concerned about any of their group not being able to commit to going tech-free, the park has downloadable promise vouchers for adults and children.

Assisted disconnection

As connectivity becomes more of a constant with consumers across markets and age groups we see more instances of people looking for assistance when it comes to taking a screen break, digitally detoxing, or simply finding a moment to enjoy an activity that doesn’t require an internet connection.

Businesses are stepping up and developing programs that tout the benefits of spending time with books instead of laptops, creating environments that repel wireless signal and provide a haven of digital peace and quiet. We’ve even seen clinics that treat the increasing instance of addiction to devices.

Families are looking for opportunities to spend time together that doesn’t require technology. Mintel’s Lifestyles of Mums UK 2013 report found that 32% of mothers strongly agree that “it’s important to plan regular family activities outside to take a break from using technology”, while 52% agreed. Further, research shows that time spent outside is crucial in combating the negative influence of too much screen time.

Those companies looking to tap into this consumer desire to detach from connectivity and take a break can do so in a variety of ways, including via digital channels. Apps that remind users to take a break or reward individuals when they spend time away from their screen can work to keep people engaged with the brand while meeting the need to take a break.

Carli Gernot
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