Nomophobia, according to this story in the UK’s Evening Standard, the fear of being out of cell phone signal range, or of letting your phone die for lack of charge.
It’s all the rage:
More than 13million Britons fear being out of mobile phone contact, according to research.
Keeping in touch with friends or family is the main reason why they are so wedded to their mobile.
More than one in two said this is why they never switch it off.
One in ten said they needed to be contactable at all times because of their jobs, while 9 per cent said that having their phone switched off made them anxious.
Experts say nomophobia could affect up to 53 per cent of mobile phone users, with 48 per cent of women and 58 per cent of men questioned admitting to experiencing feelings of anxiety when they run out of battery or credit, lose their phone or have no network coverage.
The Post Office questioned more than 2,100 mobile phone users. Stewart Fox-Mills, the company’s telecom expert, said: “Nomophobia is all too real for many people.
Hi, my name is Todd, and I have nomophobia.
It seems strange to be so reliant on something that I lived without for the first 28 years of my life. I first bought a cell phone in 1998. We moved during the infamous US West, now Qwest, strike and were unable, for weeks, to get a land line hooked up. Consequently, our mobile addiction was born.
A decade after hauling that giant phone in its snappy, fashionable holster, I now have a slim BlackBerry that rings with phone calls and buzzes with e-mail. I never turn it off. I set its alarm so it wakes me up in the morning. If I have to wait in line for more than 30 seconds, I pull it from my pocket and begin tapping away. I’m a loser, I know.
It’s handy. If a column idea hits me, I thumb it in and save it before I forget. I make lists and read newspapers online. I’m not sure what I’d do without it.
The I found out. A few weeks back, when I went fishing north of Decorah, I found myself completely out of cell phone service range. No bars, no calls, no e-mails.
I felt the symptoms nomophobia. Cold sweats, restless thumbs.
For one thing, my wife was home with a child getting over the flu and I realized she couldn’t reach me easily to give me sniffle-by-sniffle updates. Second, NCAA selection Sunday was just hours away, and I couldn’t get instant score updates.
But I adapted. I survived. I remembered a little something known to our primitive ancestors as the “collect call.” And when I couldn’t reach my wife at home, I called my parents to relay a message. It all worked out fine, and once I had made contact with my tribe, the absence of beeping and ringing and buzzing was welcome.
As we departed Sunday and climbed upward on a hilly road, my pocket buzzed and beeped for the first time in 48 hours. It told me I had a voicemail message from my very annoyed wife back on Friday, wondering why I hadn’t called. I’m no expert, but it sounded like classic nomophobia.