"Upgrade Effect" Says We're Rough With Gadgets on Purpose When There's a New Model Out

By Gary Cutlack on at

Researchers examining the way our minds work claim to have uncovered the sick truth about the way even our subconscious processes want all the new gadgets, suggesting that we tend to be rougher and less caring about our phones and devices when we're a bit bored of them and need an excuse to blow £600 on a new one.

It comes from a paper assembled by a trio of business school professors, who say we're tricking ourselves into upgrading by gradually playing rougher with the stuff we have. The summary of the paper says: "The authors propose that consumers act more recklessly with their current products when in the presence of appealing, though not yet attained, product upgrades (not just mere replacements). Carelessness and neglect toward currently owned products stem from a desire to justify the attainment of upgrades without appearing wasteful."

So there's some weird part back there in our legacy monkey brain stem that wants to break the tool we've been using to get beetles out of wood bark for millions of years, so we can have a better, pointier, hardwood beetle removal spike. Which makes sound evolutionary sense, even if it doesn't really work in today's world when you have to spend a whole month at work in order to pay for a new one of the phones you've just accidentally on purpose dropped in the toilet. [Be Careless with That! via Mashable]

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