Smartphone Dependence among Undergraduates in Taiwan


  • Nae-Fang Miao Assistant Professor, RN, PhD, Post-Baccalaureate Program in Nursing, College of Nursing, Taipei Medical University, No. 250, Wuxing Street, Taipei City 11031, Taiwan
  • Cheng-Jin Lin MS, Master Program in Long-term Care, College of Nursing, Taipei Medical University, No. 250, Wuxing Street, Taipei City 11031, Taiwan
  • Ching-Lien Cheng RN, Head Nurse, Cathay General Hospital No. 280, Renai Rd. Sec. 4, Taipei City 10630, Taiwan
  • Yu-Ling Hsiao Assistant Professor, RN, PhD, School of Nursing, College of Medicine, Fu Jen Catholic University, No. 510, Zhongzheng Rd, Xinzhuang Dist., New Taipei City 24205, Taiwan
  • I-Hui Chen Assistant Professor, RN, PhD, Master Program in Long-term Care, College of Nursing, Taipei Medical University, No. 250, Wuxing Street, Taipei City 11031, Taiwan



Smartphone use, Smartphone dependence, Undergraduates, Health, Mobile phone


Smartphones have become a new means of communication and a major method of obtaining information. Dependence on or the excessive use of smartphones may affect health in the long term. However, little attention has been focused on smartphone use and dependence among undergraduates. Therefore, this study investigated the smartphone use behavior of Taiwanese undergraduates and their dependence on smartphones. A cross-sectional study design with a structured questionnaire was used for undergraduates aged≥20 years from four universities. The results suggested that the majority of participants, particularly women, experienced physical discomfort caused by smartphone use. Moreover, the participants exhibited a moderate to high dependence on smartphones. Smartphone use and dependence were both affected by family economic status, monthly allowance, and major. The findings indicated that health care providers, educators, and parents can play critical roles in encouraging the healthy use of smartphones among undergraduates.



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