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Free Apps that Can Break Your Smartphone Addiction




Smartphones have assumed the status of almost-indispensable gadgets. With the utility of these devices increasing by the day, it is no surprise that smartphone addiction is on the rise among various classes and demographics of users.

According to the Research and Development Unit of Yudala, smartphones have lent hitherto-unimagined ease and convenience to the increasingly fast-paced world we live in, such that the boundary of their innovative uses is constantly being pushed.

For many, smartphone addiction is now an unavoidable reality, resulting in often dire effects on work, health and human relationships.

However, the beauty of technology is the ability to use it to find solutions to its side-effects. So, if you are hooked on your smartphone, there are apps to help you deal with that. According to Yudala, here are a few apps that can help you break your smartphone addiction.

QualityTime (Android)
QualityTime offers a unique and in-depth analysis of your smartphone activities by tracking total usage, screen unlocks and individual apps with hourly, daily and weekly summary reporting options.
The app provides the ability to curb your habits by using actionable features allowing you to set your own time restrictions like ‘alerts’, ‘take a break’ and ‘scheduled breaks’.
These features can help you manage and control your usage when needed. Also, you can create different QualityTime profiles to customize how you wish to unplug from your smartphone during “take a break” or “scheduled breaks” to minimize distractions during those periods.
QualityTime profiles provide options for you to block notifications and reject phone calls with auto reply text messages. You can also define exceptions to allow incoming calls from important contacts and permit access to specific apps during those restricted periods.

Offtime (iOS, Android)
The Offtime app helps users unplug by blocking distracting apps like Facebook and games, while also filtering communications. It includes information on how much you actually use your smartphone.
You can choose tailored modes like Work, Family, or Me Time to ensure that you have access to the things you need, but aren’t distracted by what you don’t. Analytics of your phone and app usage can be an important wake-up call, and can help you curb your habits.

AppDetox (Android)

Another useful application for breaking smartphone addiction, AppDetox can help you get your weakness under control, especially if you are one of those whose attachment to the smartphone is based on apps-usage.
You can set your own parameters on an app-by-app basis so you can have access when it is not a disruption. Every time you break one of your own rules, the app reminds you to put down your phone.

Forest (Android, iOS, Windows Phone, Chrome, Firefox)
Forest is a simple app that rewards you for not touching it. When you want to focus, open the app to plant a tree. If you want that tree to grow, don’t touch your phone for the next 30 minutes. That’s it.
The mobile version encourages you to leave the app open, while the browser version gives you more flexibility: it encourages you to not browse sites from a block list you set for yourself. If you find yourself opening your Facebook, Twitter or Instagram tabs when you should be working, Forest is the right app for you.

Moment (iOS)
Moment tracks your device usage and allows you to set daily limits. The beauty of the app is that it notifies you if you exceed them.
You can even use a setting that “forces” you off your phone by flooding your screen with annoying alerts when you try to extend your screen time. Moment can also be used for families, with the option to track your family’s device use from your own phone.

BreakFree (iOS, Android)
BreakFree incorporates the usage tracking features found in many similar apps, but it differs in that it breaks down the information into an easy-to-understand “addiction score.”
It also shows you how often you unlock your phone screen, and comprehensively logs your usage for the day.
This system makes it a great choice for those who like to set goals and challenge themselves. Ironically, it may also get you addicted to trying to see how low you can get your addiction score.

Flipd (Android)
If you lack the focus or self-discipline to keep the phone away when you’re trying to get some work done, Flipd is the app for you.
Flipd allows you to lock your phone for a set period of time, and once you do, there’s no going back. Even restarting your phone won’t disable the app, so it is almost impossible for you to cut corners.
Flipd can even be used to remotely “flip off” one user from another user’s device, which is helpful for teams that want to keep one another focused on a task.

Stay on Task (Android)
Stay on Task is an equally useful app which helps keep you away from your distracting smartphone in a gentler way.
The app simply asks if you’re still on task at random intervals during the day. If you are easily distracted, Stay on Task can help you overcome this weakness by redirecting your focus when your mind is wandering.

Nigeria CommunicationsWeek believes that technology makes life more exciting and helps improve the lives of people around Nigeria and indeed the world. So since 2007, we have devoted our energy to independent reportage of technology and how they affect lives.

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Some $408m Fund for Internet Access Sitting Idle



New research indicates more than $4008million in public funding collected to expand internet access in Africa is sitting dormant in public coffers.


The research from the Web Foundation, Alliance for Affordable Internet and United Nations Women, released at the 62nd UN Commission on the Status of Women, found many governments are failing to take action to connect women and other offline populations, despite funds earmarked for it.


UN Women calls on government to invest at least half of the Universal Service and Access Funds (USAFs)—communal public funds dedicated to expanding internet connectivity—to enabling women access and use the internet.


USAFs offer “an incredible and vastly underutilized opportunity for making real progress, an opportunity we cannot afford to miss,” said Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka, Under-Secretary-General of the United Nations, Executive Director of UN Women.


“Every day that these funds remain unused is another day women and girls are sidelined in the digital revolution. We call on governments to take immediate action to put these funds toward their intended purpose, and to work to make the digital divide history—starting with women and girls.”


The connection could bring six million women online, provide digital skills to 16 million women and girls, according to the report Universal Service and Access Funds: An Untapped Resource to Close the Gender Digital Divide.


It noted that failure to utilise the funds risks widening global inequality and undermining global development.


“We can’t reduce global inequality without closing the digital divide and online gender gap,” said Sonia Jorge, executive director of the Alliance for Affordable Internet and head of digital inclusion programmes at the Web Foundation.


“We must act now to stop the online world from entrenching offline inequalities. We call on governments to make effective and timely use of available funds, and to invest at least 50 per cent of them in projects aimed at bringing more women online.”


Up to four billion people are not connected online globally. Only around 2 in 10 people in Africa are online.


The continent has the widest gap in internet use between men and women.


This is even though 37 African countries have a USAF in place, and 62% of the funds considered active, the research found.


But, most governments are failing to spend the USAF funds collected. In 2016, USAFs across Africa disbursed just 54 per cent of funds collected.


Few countries are focused on improving women’s internet access and use — despite the worsening digital gender gap.


Just three of the 37 countries with USAFs have universal access policies guiding the USAF that explicitly aim to connect women and girls through the fund.


Analysis in the report shows that in order to reduce the growing global gender gap in internet use—a gap which is widest in Africa—USAFs should boost investments in programmes that aim specifically to tackle obstacles to internet use and access faced by women.






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BHS to Unveil Nigeria’s First Online Trade Fair In May



A Nigerian firm, Best Hope Services, says it will unveil the first online trade exhibition in the country in May to promote innovations by local inventors, scholars and entrepreneurs.

Olu Adenodi , Chief Executive officer of the Company told newsmen yesterday in Lagos that the online trade fair would allow exhibitors to showcase their products to the world without having to hire an exhibition ground.

According to him, the e-fair will also enable visitors to conveniently participate in the trade exhibition without leaving the comfort of their homes or offices.

“We observed that most innovations in our tertiary institutions will only be heard of for a while but would not be developed, this medium allows for the promotion of such.

“We are creating an opportunity of translating what is obtainable only on land or terrestrial into the air or outer space, taking full advantage of technology and utilising the internet to the fullest,” he said.

Also speaking, the originator of the e-Fair, Prof. Joseph Mba said that the online expo would have huge positive impact on national development.

He said that Nigeria and Africa academic researchers, inventors and problem solvers would be inspired and motivated to creativity and innovations with this idea.

According to him, the e-fair would cover four strategic areas: e-fair expo, e-fair connect, e-fair trade and e-fair events with the aim to have an online trade fair.

He urged Nigerians to register on the website ahead of the first mega online expo for all industries which is scheduled for May 1.

“The timetable had been drawn for different sectors like: technology, automobiles, electronics- home and office durable consumables.

“We urge Nigerians to register before the fair commences in May,” he said.

BSH International Ltd is the concessionaire in charge of the management of the Tafawa Balewa Square, home of the Lagos annual International trade fair.

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NIRA to Honour Nigerian Internet Innovators @ .ng Awards



NiRA seeks to recognize and acknowledge those who are contributing to the growth of the .ng domain name registration and promotion of the DNS Industry. Using the .ng Awards, NIRA celebrates the achievements and innovation of Nigerian Internet initiatives.

The 2018 .ng Awards serve to promote and commend the excellent achievements of members, stakeholders and the general public, who contribute towards building a sustainable economy using technology, uplift the image of .ng locally and internationally and stimulating the development of local content on the Internet space.

The .ng string is a critical National resource and Nigeria’s unique identity on the World Wide Web. The Nigeria Internet Registration Association (NIRA) an Industry-led stakeholder organization, is the Registry for the .ng domain name and maintains the database of names registered in the .ng country code Top Level Domain (ccTLD) name space in the interest of Nigerians and the global Internet community.

NiRA is pleased to inform the general public that the 2018 .ng Awards is scheduled to hold at 6:00 pm on Friday, 27th April, 2018 in Lagos. The 2018 .ng Awards is the third edition of the .ng Awards and as usual, will be based on merit.

Nomination for the .ng Awards by the general public will commence on Friday, 16th March, 2018 and close at midnight on Friday 30th March, 2018. Members of the public who wish to participate in nominating any organization or individual are to note the nomination criteria. To participate in the nomination or find out more about the awards, kindly visit Voting for the shortlisted nominees would commence on Friday, 6th April, 2018 and end by midnight on Saturday, 21st April, 2018.

We encourage the active participation of all in nominating and voting for your preferred organizations and business in the different award categories.


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