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Published on 22.09.17 in Vol 3, No 1 (2017): CHC Issue

This paper is in the following e-collection/theme issue:


    Development of a Monitoring System for Smartphone Overuse

    1School of Public Health, Fudan University, Shanghai, China

    2Health Communication Institute, Fudan University, Shanghai, China

    3The Key Laboratory of Public Health Safety, Fudan University, Shanghai, China

    4Fudan-Pudong Preventive Medicine Institute, Shanghai, China

    5School of Computer Science, Fudan University, Shanghai, China

    *these authors contributed equally

    Corresponding Author:

    Jiang Li, Ass Prof Dr med

    School of Public Health

    Fudan University

    PO Box 248

    138 Yixueyuan Road



    Phone: 86 154237509



    Background: Smartphone overuse has become an epidemic public health concern around the world. Nowadays, the measurement of smartphone overuse, which comes to be known as smartphone addiction, is still relying on self-reported questionnaire. However, this leads to inaccuracy and it cannot perform continual measurement.

    Objective: The aim of this study is to develop an IT based system monitoring daily usage behavior of smartphone automatically, which was named Smartphone Overuse Monitoring System (SOMS).

    Methods: The monitoring system consists of an Android Smartphone application (SOMS App) and a web application server. The App was designed to fulfill the following core functions: 1. To collect users’ general demographic data and identify the IMEI of smartphones; 2. To monitor using behavior and assess smartphone overuse; 3. To give instant feedback to users. The web server stores the data collected by the App and execute statistical analysis.

    Results: We invited 11 participants to test the SOMS. The users were asked to fill out a short questionnaire at the first logon, which includes demographic information, such as name, sex, age etc. The SOMS App recorded the smartphone behavior as follows: power on/off, call in/out, screening on/off/unlock, programs usage. The data of program usage include which app and how long it was used. Once a day, the participants received a notification of the smartphone usage statistics for the last 24 hours. The users can also find key messages from the interface of the SOMS App, such as the top 10 most frequently and longest used Apps. Moreover, the SOMS App draws a fragment map, which illustrates the interrupted daily life by smartphone.

    Conclusions: The monitoring system can tally the length and frequency of smartphone use and analyze the most influential Apps on people’s daily life. It is not only significant for the screening of smartphone overuse but also for the development of intervention strategy.

    iproc 2017;3(1):e7



    Multimedia Appendix 1

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    PDF File (Adobe PDF File), 397KB

    Edited by T Hale; This is a non–peer-reviewed article. submitted 27.06.17; accepted 22.08.17; published 22.09.17

    ©Jiang Li, Siguo Bi, Jiao-Er Ding, Yukun Lan, Hua Fu. Originally published in Iproceedings (, 22.09.2017.

    This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work, first published in Iproceedings, is properly cited. The complete bibliographic information, a link to the original publication on, as well as this copyright and license information must be included.