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National Unplug Challenge: News 8's Abbie Alford takes the challenge

Would you be able to turn off your phone and all electronic devices for a full 24 hours?

SAN DIEGO (NEWS 8) – Would you be able to turn off your phone and all electronic devices for a full 24 hours?

That is the challenge many Americans are taking on National Day of Unplugging, including News 8’s Abbie Alford.

By the way, did you know mobile ownership went from 35 percent in 2011 to 77 percent in 2018?

Abbie said her mother would be shocked to see her snuggled up with a book not on her phone. Because of work, Abbie has two phones, one for work and one for personal use.

As she took the challenge, she handed both phones to News 8’s digital editor, Paco Ramos – but not before sending one more text to her husband. He never responded and if he did she has no way of knowing.

While out in Pacific Beach Friday, Abbie noticed Colin Jackson – who was walking with his phone in hand. She asked him he would be able to unplug for a day.

“From text message to email to social media, for 24 hours? Sure,” he said.

At UC San Diego, Abbie found students with their phones on a table.

“It is kind of nice to not worry about it because sometimes you check it and overcheck it and overthink things,” said one student.

Another student said, “I read statistics on how many times a day you pick up your phone, and it is crazy.”

Mobile users touch their phones about 2,617 times a day.

Colin said he feels refreshed when he does a 48-hour tech-detox during train rides up to Los Angeles.

“I take it in. I people watch,” he said.

Full Disclosure: Abbie did cheat a bit by asking a News 8 producer to check her phone to make sure she had not missed any text messages. She insists she DID NOT touch her phone and therefore remains unplugged.

She has since returned to reading her book.

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