SHUT IT! The app to switch apps off! By Rita, on Velvet work experience

About the author – in her own words

I’m Rita, I’m Portuguese, I’m 16 years old and I’ve come to London on my own! How many kids have this opportunity?! I’m in 11th grade studying languages and I speak Portuguese, obviously, English, German and Spanish. Although I’m young I’m a really a determined and focused person, but just like any teenager I never pass a chance to have fun and be with my friends. I’m not very fond of school but I recognise the importance of carving out a career and am not afraid of hard work. I’m a really outdoorsy person and I play a lot of volleyball, I can even say I’m not a bad player. Travel with friends and going to university abroad are definitely on my bucket list. I like to avoid spending too much time in the digital world and instead live in the ‘real’ world, hence the idea for the Shut It app – which you can read about in the blog below.


Rita’s app idea

We are in the digital era, an era that’s controlled by the use of gadgets. Studies show that for the first time ever there are more gadgets in the world than there are people. Today we can be talking with anyone we want, even if that person is across the world, we can watch a film, tweet, be on Instagram, Facebook, Snapchat or any other social media with just one click or tap.

We can read the news, listen to music, do endless research, take photos and text people instantaneously. There are so many things people can do on their phone nowadays that it can all get a bit confusing and overwhelming. Although it brings a lot of benefits, people tend to use their phones excessively and it’s also damaging to society.

Without even noticing, we’re investing our time into using devices when we could be doing something with real people or real objects. Instead of reading a book, being with our families or just making eye contact with people we are Tweeting and Instagramming. Even if you want to just shut your phone off, you know you can’t because somehow you have become addicted to it, it’s almost like the internet is calling you. So what is the solution?

Well what about an app? Ironic and counterintuitive, yes, but what if there was an app out there that can just shut down your gadgets completely for maybe three hours a day? With the app you could program a time of the day and how long you wanted your phone, tablet or computer to completely shut down.

For that brief moment in time, you are obligated to live in the real world and, if you’re feeling crazy, you might just use that time to learn something other than how many Instagram likes you’ve got and hang out with people face to face, not virtually!

The name? “Shut It”.


Here’s how Rita imagines it will look.