Essay on Smart Phones and a Sense of Belonging

Essay on Smart Phones and a Sense of Belonging

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Smart Phone Consumption
Mobile phone used to be a communication device. It has turned into an indispensable necessity ever since the development of smart phone. It has become much in prevalence worldwide in recent years, especially in Asia, Pacific, Western Europe and America markets. According to Gartner, Inc. (2013), global smart phone sales to end users reached 455.6 million units in the third quarter of 2013, while the sales of feature phones continued to decline, because users rushed to replace their old models with smart phones. Moreover, it had been the high-speed growth stage of smart phones from 2010 to 2012 (Carson, 2013). It is evidence that why most of my friends changed from feature phones to smart phones since 2010 and became addicted to them. They seemed to be forced to check e-mail alerts, Facebook notifications and news updates every few minutes. Although I felt a little bit envy at the beginning, I still thought rationally I did not need one. However, I surrendered and bought my first smart phone on April, 2012. My consumption experience can be explained by consumer socialisation theory.

Consumer Socialisation
The term “Consumer socialisation” refers to the developmental steps that individuals who build skills, knowledge and attitudes relate to their functioning as consumers in the marketplaces in youngsters (Ward, 1974). It is a process of how to consume and how to be a consumer from infancy to maturity. According to Moschis and Moore (1984), consumer socialization can be based on two models of the cognitive development model and the social learning model. The former one considers learning as a cognitive psychological process of adjustment to one's environment (Moschis and Moore, 1984). Meanwhile, socialisati...


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...t participate in the conversation, I felt I was not part of this group and was being excluded invisibly, because there was a gap between our friendships. I could not find similarity and affiliation with them. It is corresponded to Kandel (1978) that similarity is a dominant element of friendship selection and an outcome of friendship interactions. I was afraid that if I didn’t have a smart phone, our friendships would be out-of-sight, others’ friendship would become more closer. Erikson (1968) points out that peer-group affiliation allows individual to form closer peer relationships, and to obviate psychological dependence on parents while maintaining a sense of belonging. Therefore, a confliction between family education and peer influence had appeared. Peer pressure shook my existed conception increasingly and collapsed my consumption habit that I hold for years.

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