Tools like hands-free kits and Siri might mean that you don’t have to have your face constantly buried in your iPhone, but for most people the reality is that using a smartphone suggests your focus is not entirely on the real world around you.
Tackling this problem head-on is a place called Foreigner Street in Chongqing city, China, which has installed a special walking lane for smartphone users — just as might be the case with a cycle lane elsewhere.
Signs stenciled on the sidewalk note that people walking there should be aware that the people around them could well have lapses in attention, with a warning reading “CELLPHONES: WALK IN THIS LANE AT YOUR OWN RISK.”
A “NO CELLPHONES” sign meanwhile makes clear that there are parts of the sidewalk where people should put away their smartphones altogether.
As solutions go, it might be fixing a problem that doesn’t really exist, but with Apple planning to sell more of its next generation iPhones than ever before, maybe China is just taking the necessary proactive steps.