Researchers, including those from the Alabama State University, surveyed a representative sample of 404 undergraduate students from a public university in the US about their smartphone dependency.
One in five students rated themselves as totally dependent on their phone; about half agreed that they are overly dependent.
More females than males reported feeling safer with their phone than without it.
More than half of freshmen students reported that they use their phone as a way of escaping from problems or relieving a bad mood.
However, students overwhelmingly disagreed that they have a hard time concentrating due to their phone use.
"The truth about smartphone addiction is that people are not addicted to their smartphone, they are addicted to the information, entertainment and personal connections it delivers," said ASU professor of communications, Dr Richard Emanuel.
"People will continue to go to great lengths to connect with others. Smartphones provide a portable, instant way to stay informed, entertained and connected; however, this seemingly constant connection may have some unintended effects, namely self-alienation and impatience," he said.

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