Existing research on phubbing, or the act of looking at the smartphone while having a face-to-face conversation with others, highlighted a number of factors that could cause one to use their smartphone while having a face-to-face conversation with others including smartphone addiction, SMS (texting) addiction, social media addiction, Internet addiction and to some extent game addiction. The fear of missing out (FoMO) and self-control have also been found to predict this behaviour. No study in the literature has investigated the relationship between boredom and phubbing. The present study aims at addressing this limitation in the literature by focusing specifically on trait boredom as a possible predictor of phubbing. To examine if trait boredom predicts phubbing frequency, we conducted an online survey with 352 smartphone users who, in addition to reporting on their phubbing frequency, also completed the Short Boredom Proneness Scale. A hierarchical regression analysis revealed that trait boredom predicted phubbing frequency even when controlled for age and geographical location. This study is significant not only because it is the first study that found that trait boredom predicts phubbing frequency, but also because future research can now build on this finding to investigate other types of boredom, such as state boredom and leisure boredom. Considering that phubbing has been found to result in a range of negative effects including relationship quality and satisfaction, life satisfaction and mood, this study also highlights a need for future research to examine phubbing as a moderator of the relationship between boredom and these negative effects.
Al-Saggaf, Y., MacCulloch, R., & Wiener, K. (2019). Trait boredom is a predictor of phubbing frequency. Journal of Technology in Behavioral Science, 4(3), 245-252. https://doi.org/10.1007/s41347-018-0080-4