The electricity used annually is equivalent to powering
54,000 homes

Ever since Steve Jobs announced the launch of the iPhone in 2007, the mobile device has taken the world by storm. In the years since, this Apple smartphone has evolved and metamorphosed into a device millions of people center their lives around.

The true cost of an iPhone is more than a monthly bill. Truth be told, you’re paying more for your iPhone than you’re probably aware of.

How, you may ask? Well, smartphones have been linked to both depression and automobile accidents, both of which inevitably affect the insurance rates you pay and the coverage you receive.

Though the research is still relatively new, smartphones and other technological devices have been linked to information overload, which has been proven to cause social anxiety, depression, and day-to-day melancholy. According to a Michigan State University study, individuals who engage in long-term technological multitasking are more likely to develop depression, with the most avid media multitaskers reporting twice the depression symptoms as those who use smartphones sparingly.

How does depression affect insurance? LLG Financial reports that life insurance rates are affected by varying degrees of depression, with moderate to deep depression increasing life insurance rates and sometimes even disqualifying individuals for coverage. Life insurance is essential to help families replace lost income, pay off debt, access emergency funds, and assist them through financial difficulties, according to the Gerber Life Insurance Company. Therefore, if your iPhone has become an emotional crutch, it might be time to evaluate your usage and put your emotional well-being first. The last thing you want is for your phone to cause your life insurance to go up in cost, or worse, to cause you to lose life insurance coverage completely.

Aside from life insurance, smartphones also have an immense effect on car insurance. According to the National Safety Council, car crashes involving drivers – the highest percentage of whom are teens – using cell phones and texting happen every 30 seconds. And according to the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration, texting while driving makes individuals 23 times more likely to be involved in automobile accidents.

For those who think looking down for five seconds to check a text isn’t that big a deal, think again. At a speed of 55 mph, individuals travel the length of a football field in five seconds, and a lot can happen in those few seconds.

Most states have made texting and driving illegal, ticketing those who violate the ban. State Farm Auto Insurance reports that with increased accidents and tickets drivers are forced to pay higher car insurance rates. Therefore, if you want to avoid paying higher car insurance or losing your life in a completely-preventable accident, make sure to not engage in texting and driving on a smartphone.

There is no reason you should have to pay higher insurance rates because of your iPhone. Sure, this useful device was invented to help us get through life, but don’t let it damage your insurance coverage. Seek out help if you suspect your iPhone usage has become an addiction.

Video Transcript
Health: (C)
Locally: (A)
The iPhone may have a positive impact on your personal health. The gamificiation of exercise through apps like Zombies, Run encourages people to be more active. To date, Zombies, Run has more than 150,000 players logging nearly a million miles.
Globally: (F)
The iPhone does the most damage to the people who manufacture them. More than 18 Foxconn employees attempted suicide in 2010 and in 2012, 150 workers threatened suicide to protest unfair working conditions.
Environment: (B-)
Locally: (B)
Though the original iPhone was called out by Greenpeace for containing hazardous chemicals, but the newest iPhones are some of the most ecofriendly mobile devices available, and in terms of power consumption, an iPhone 5 is going to cost you on average just 41 cents a year.
Globally: (B-)
Within a year, analysts project that sales of the iPhone 5 will reach 170 million. The electricity used annually for all these phones is the equivalent to powering 54,000 homes. That’s roughly the size of Cedar Rapids Iowa.
Economy: (B-)
Locally: (C+)
An iPhone 5 will cost you at least $1,800 once you factor in the costs of a service plan, accessories, and the average amount spent on apps. This is 4.2% of the average salary ($42,979) for a US citizen.
Globally: (B)
The iPhone alone added $1.9 billion to the US’s trade deficit with China. On the plus side, the iPhone 5 is predicted to boost the US GDP by .33% - an impressive feat for one product especially in a time of low consumer confidence.
Final Grade: C+


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