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Fighting iPhone Addiction Among Kids: Is It Apple's Responsibility?

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) -- When asked if smartphones were addictive, most of the folks we spoke to took it one step further.

"I feel like I have to have it in my hand, not my pocketbook," admitted Shirley Duboyd of West Philadelphia.

Dre Mackin added, "If I'm bored, I could be looking at it all day."

If admitting you have a problem is the first step, the designer of the iPhone wants Apple to help with two and three.

In a series of tweets, a former executive reinforced recent criticism from two of Apple's investors calling on the tech giant to do more to combat digital addiction, especially among children.

Investors To Apple: Fight iPhone Addiction Among Kids

Citing issues like insufficient sleep, depression and suicide, the phone's co-creator said users should be notified when they cross over to addiction.

So, is it Apple's responsibility?

"Just like with alcohol or tobacco, we expect a certain level of education of the public on risks versus benefits," said Ario Hossaini, in town from Louisville, Kentucky.

Dr. Stephen Andriole, a business technology professor at Villanova University, says that while parents should monitor their child's usage, enhanced software would help. And since government regulation takes time, encourages Silicon Valley to take a proactive approach.

"One thing they could do is during the setup process, to require parents to set the parameters," said Andriole.

For now, Apple says it has a "long history" of parental controls and plans to make them more robust.

"I think they're extending themselves doing that because ultimately the responsibility falls on the parent," said Djnah Suswell of West Philly.



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