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The Mobile Phone: An Emotionalised Social Robot


This chapter builds on the notion that humans, who have appropriated mobile phones and incorporated them into their everyday lives since the 1980s have, in so doing, created their own personal social robot. It asserts that the constant always on connectivity afforded by this device is enabling a communicable stream of consciousness and emotions that are intertwined between the mobile phone and their emotional self. This, in turn has created a dependence and attachment to the device, to the relationships it mediates and more, such that it is so fully integrated into people’s day-to-day living they cannot imagine how to conduct everyday life without it. The outcome of this human and machine interaction, and the electronic emotions it imbues, is a device that has become an emotionalised social robot that is exclusive to its user.


  • Mobile Phone
  • Humanoid Robot
  • Human User
  • Social Robot
  • Mobile Phone User

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    In this chapter I use the generic term ‘mobile phone’.

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Correspondence to Jane Vincent .

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Vincent, J. (2015). The Mobile Phone: An Emotionalised Social Robot. In: Vincent, J., Taipale, S., Sapio, B., Lugano, G., Fortunati, L. (eds) Social Robots from a Human Perspective. Springer, Cham.

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