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Phone-Lift

Redesigned subway handrails system

Phone-Lift is designed to create a screen-friendly environment. It has six pieces placed inside of the subway car, each of them supports a part of people's body to help people to maintain a good posture when using mobile phones. Because due to the overuse and inappropriate use of mobile phones, increasing prevalence of neck and shoulder pain has appeared in our societies. People need to be reminded to pay more attention to their body posture while using the mobile phone and raise their awareness to think about their relationships between mobile phones.

//  It took thousands of years for humans to evolve into homo Erectus. Do we really have to let our phones to bend us down again?

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INSPIRATION

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Photography

by Eric Pickersgrill 

Our body doesn't born to know how to use the mobile phone which has already changed our behavior.

ISSUES

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Common physiological diseases caused by mobile phones.

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OBSERVATIONS

There is an observation of people's posture outdoor and indoor. More than 90% of people have their heads down which is a major cause of shoulder, neck, and back pain.

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The weight of the head is a key factor for text neck pain. The neck's muscles, tendons, and ligaments are meant to support the head weigh —10 to 12 pounds—in a neutral position balanced atop the cervical spine. When texting on a phone, it is common to bend the head forward and look down at a 45- or 60-degree angle, which places about 50 to 60 pounds of force on the neck. The neck is not able to withstand this amount of pressure over a prolonged period.

ANALYSIS

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What is the proper posture of holding the mobile phone?

- The answer is: to hold your mobile phone at eye level as much as possible.

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ASSUMPTIONS & PROTOTYPES

Giving support on certain parts of the body is to help people maintain a proper posture of holding phones. To find out how and what's the best form to achieve the goals I explore several directions of supporting different parts of the body.

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DIRECTION- ELBOW REST

After a series of prototypes tests, supporting the elbows and wrists is the most effective way to keep people in a good posture of holding a cell phone.

GOALS

To design objects that can both raise people's awareness of having proper posture while using mobile phones and give them support to better lift their smartphones. Therefore, the design collections are between practical and critical.

REPRESENTATIVE SCENARIO 

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The subway is one of the most important commute ways of people in the city.

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At the same time, it's one of the most typical scenes that people are idle, they have nothing to do but browsing their phones or read a book. I choose the subway as the representative scenario to address my assumption.

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COMMON ISSUES

Sometimes we can see people arm around the handrail to ensure body balanced, so they can have both hands to use mobile phones or read. It works for individual people sometimes, but when the car gets crowded, this posture will block other people's way to hold the handrail.

HYPOTHESIS

So I thought, why not combine the two actions (holding the handrail and using a cell phone) and design an elbow-rest on the handrail? In this way, when people put their elbows on it, it can not only keep them stable in the carriage but also provide them a better posture to browse or read.

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SOLUTIONS & DESIGN 

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1. DOUBLE-RING 

I cut this pole into two parts, and insert two rings as elbow-rest. People can put their elbows in the gap between the two rings and put their forearms on the higher rings. When people are not using this elbow-rest, the roundness of the rings still provides the handrail function.

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2. SPIRAL HANDRAIL

The vertical spiral shape provides great support at the elbow and forearm at the same time which can better lift the entire arm and ensure that the hand is kept at an appropriate angle. The inner section of the spiral handrail used bright color- yellow to caught people's attention that informs them this part is where to put their arm on.

The vertical spiral shape provides great support at the elbow and forearm at the same time which can better lift the entire arm and ensure that the hand is kept at an appropriate angle. The inner section of the spiral handrail used bright color- yellow to caught people's attention that informs them this part is where to put their arm on.

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At the same time, the spiral-shape handrail provides the countless fulcrum for people of different heights, even children can use it if they want to read a book. Another advantage is that the spiral type handrail has more places to hold than the straight one. When the car is crowded, it can allow more people to hold the handle and avoid the embarrassment of touching the stranger's' hands.

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3. WAVY HANDRAIL

People in the public area will unconsciously stay in the corner to avoid becoming a conspicuous one in the enclosed space.

 

The wavy handrail is placed on the horizontal handrail beside the seat. The wavy shape allows people to put their wrists on it and stay stable. It can be used in either one hand or both hands.

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4. GRIPS-BAR

Instead of providing the straight support of the elbow, this design needs cooperation from users. The grips on the bar imply people to grab it. However, the grip is only accessible with the other hand that not next to the bar. People will form a posture that looks like arming themself, and they can rest the other elbow on that arm.

Instead of providing the straight support of the elbow, this design needs cooperation from users. The grips on the bar imply people to grab it. However, the grip is only accessible with the other hand that not next to the bar. People will form a posture that looks like arming themself, and they can rest the other elbow on that arm.

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5. CROSS-POLE

People put their elbows and wrists on the colored parts of the cross, and their chin will also be supported by the upper pole. People may seem to be trapped by this cross pole, but in fact, this shape provides good support for people's body posture when using mobile phones. I hope people can reflect on their relationship with their phones when they see others using this object "weirdly".

6. ELBOW-STRAPS

This is the strap hanged on the upper bar of the carriage. It's designed as a twist shape for holding people's elbow. Instead of holding the strap with hand, people use their elbow to hold the strap. The highlight color implies people to grab it and pull it down to elbow level, then rest their elbow in it. The critical aspect of this design is people get support to maintain a good posture of holding the mobile phone, but they might need to swing their bodies with the moving subway. It wants people to think about their addiction to the mobile phone, why they can't stop using the mobile phone even they are in a shaky subway car.

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COLLECTIONS (Learn more by clicking the video! )

In general, This collection is designed for lifting mobile phones, but it also works for reading books. When people stand in front of these objects, they can make their decisions to use it for browsing mobile phone or reading a book. Although these devices are not enough for everyone who uses the mobile phone in the subway, people are using these unusual objects can remind others to adjust their body posture. As for me, both being a designer and a mobile phone user, I know the mentality of people who are addicted to mobile phones. Even suffering from neck pain, we still have been evading to think about the side effects of it. Consequently, when I tried to find a way to improve this situation. I was not only attempted to provide people with better support when using mobile phones but also want all mobile phone users to think about what's the role of mobile phones been placed in our lives and the negative effects it has brought to us.