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Activist investors urge Apple to curb kids' iPhone addiction

Giving big tech an ominous headline to start off 2018, investors Jana Partners and the California State Teachers’ Retirement System has demanded the company do more to help parents manage their kids relationship with it's products in an open letter.

Highlights from the letter include: 

"The potential long-term consequences of new technologies need to be factored in at the outset, and no company can outsource that responsibility.” 

"It is also no secret that social media sites and applications for which the iPhone and iPad are a primary gateway are usually designed to be as addictive and time-consuming as possible, as many of their original creators have publicly acknowledged."

"There appears to be a developing consensus that the goal for parents should be ensuring the developmentally optimal amount and type of access, particularly given the educational benefits mobile devices can offer." 

With the explosive speed of consumer technology advancement and mass adoption over the last 10 years, so too has there been an explosion in unintended consequences. 

When undertaking innovation with technology that exerts such a powerful influence over people, we have a responsibility to question our decisions and mitigate our innate biases. 

What audience may we have not considered? Where might we be wrong? What is the worst case? 

Most importantly, just because we can create something, should we?

More posts by Stephen Horner

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