We’ve seen something like this before. China tried it but, from what I remember, it was abandoned because mobile phone users didn’t see the signs or the phone-only walkway.
Now something similar is rolling out in Antwerp, with “text lanes” trying to separate “phone zombies” from other pavement users. We’re not fully sure why they’re called “text lanes” as many other activities are usually being performed as people shuffle along with their heads down. Perhaps they should be called “Updating Facebook to make myself look popular” lanes or “Reading the news, checking the weather forecast and checking my Twitter feeds” lanes?
White lines have been painted after smartphone laboratory Mlab highlighted the amount of people bumping into each other..
You probably walk through the streets while texting or sending Whatsapp messages to your friends and don’t really pay attention to your surroundings – only to whatever is happening on your screen.
This causes collisions with poles or other pedestrians. You could, unknowingly, even be endangering your own life while you ‘textwalk’ when you cross the street without looking up.
The company itself has also got a shot of publicity from this temporary measure.