Ever felt your mobile go off in your pocket and checked your phone, only to find that you didn’t actually receive the text you were expecting? Or even worse, felt the vibration in your pocket and realized that your phone is on the desk in front of you? Don’t worry, you’re not going mad – such feelings have been well-documented by other mobile addicts, and an Australian expert might just have the answers.
Professor Alex Blaszczynski, psychologist and chairman of School of Psychology at the University of Sydney, reckons that the phantom vibrations are a physiological reaction to the constant stream of information being passed through your phone. Much as holding your handset in front of certain electrical equipment causes that harsh buzzing sound when it’s ringing or you’re on the phone, the area of your leg under your trouser pocket might have been exposed to enough EMI (electromagnetic impulse) that it would have the same effect as when your phone performs a “hand shake” with a mobile tower – swapping relevant info and signal through bursts of electronic activity from the safety of your pocket.
Professor Blaszczynski assured that there’s nothing to worry about though – the effect caused by transcutaneous muscle stimulation resulting in the feeling of a vibration is harmless, and can be eradicated completely by storing the mobile elsewhere on your person.
Hopefully this won’t cause too much stress – as evidenced by a recent study which highlighted the effects of stress versus excessive checking of smartphones by their owners. Apparently those who are most stressed are the ones most likely to feel these vibrations even when their phone isn’t being used. The real lesson here is moderation.