Offline is the new luxury (13)

Time spent on your smartphone: how could you pass it more wisely? And what exactly does it do for you? Each Friday, Irene, who together with Astrid is the founder of Flow, writes about this particular issue.

For anyone looking for ways on how to manage the rest of their lives with that smartphone, it turns out there is a plethora of products and initiatives out there to turn to. There are untold apps, such as the previously mentioned Offtime, which I installed and then proceeded to mainly ignore, but that’s another story… There are also more and more digital detox holidays on offer, which sounds like a carefree summer camp of days gone by. A bit of yoga, a little mindfulness, campfires and—more importantly—having to hand over your cell phone upon arrival. How good does that sound? The camps in America that are shown on are definitely on my wish list. And while we’re on the topic, I’d also like to go to Bar Salve Jorge in Sao Paulo, where they invented a beer glass a few years ago that can only stay upright if you use your smartphone as a coaster, which means being totally absorbed in your phone while you’re out with your friends is not that easy there. Take a look at this video to see how it works.

And there was also something new recently from the Netherlands. Some entrepreneurs have just launched Block, a hexagonal metal box into which you and your friends/family/colleagues etc. pop your phones when you are together. It holds up to six phones, and once inside, the phones are disconnected from their networks thanks to a special inner material that blocks electric fields. Admittedly, they haven’t hit the production line yet, but interest in the product is currently being gauged. Check out for more information.


Illustratie Isabelle Schippers