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UScellular and Sarah Michelle Gellar Partner for Global Day of Unplugging

New survey shows that a third of people want to take an intentional break from their phone

Sarah Michelle Gellar

CHICAGO (February 20, 2024) – UScellular is continuing to foster healthy relationships with technology by encouraging people to participate in Global Day of Unplugging on Friday, March 1. To help build awareness, the company is partnering with actress and producer, Sarah Michelle Gellar to encourage people to use this moment to reset their relationship with technology.

Global Day of Unplugging is an annual awareness campaign that encourages people to take a break from technology and celebrate human connection over digital engagement.

“UScellular's commitment to encourage people and offer resources to help create healthy boundaries with their technology really resonated with me,” said Sarah Michelle Gellar, actress and producer. “Many of us have experienced the toll of being over-connected to devices which can impact our self-esteem and mental health. As a parent, I think it's especially important to be a role model for our children and make sure we are making space from distractions to connect with what matters most – family and friends. That’s why I plan to join UScellular and participate in Global Day of Unplugging on March 1.”

It’s well-known Americans are increasingly dependent on their smartphones for essential daily functions, entertainment, and connection, but data from a December 2023 survey* commissioned by UScellular suggests that people may be re-evaluating the role of their phone in their lives. According to the survey, 41% shared that they could use some time away from their phone and nearly a third of people want to take an intentional break from their phone.

UScellular is inviting people to participate in the initiative and take a break from technology. For every person who shares their participation at uscellular.com/unplugging, the company will make a donation, up to $50,000, to Unplug Collaborative, the non-profit that organizes the Global Day of Unplugging and works to make tech-free experiences meaningful and accessible to all.

Disconnect on Global Day of Unplugging

“UScellular’s mission is to connect people to what matters most, but sometimes the technology that enables us to connect has unintended consequences when it gets out of place in our lives,” said Eric Jagher, senior vice president and chief marketing officer at UScellular. “We encourage everyone to participate in Global Day of Unplugging to take a break from technology, celebrate human connection, and reset their relationship with technology.”

Sarah Michelle Gellar is lending her voice to the campaign and encouraging her audience and consumers to participate in Global Day of Unplugging. She will also share tips from UScellular to help with a successful reset, including:

  • Out of sight: Put your phone somewhere you won’t be readily able to see it, like a drawer or cabinet.
  • Spend time with people you love: Grab dinner with a friend you haven’t seen in a while. Have a meaningful conversation with your partner. Invite your neighbors over for a board game night. Cook a complicated recipe with your family.
  • Get out. Work out. Chill out: Spend some time outdoors, getting some fresh air and being in nature. It’s good for your mental and physical health.

UScellular launched its “Built For US” campaign in February 2023 to lead the conversation around developing healthier relationships with technology. This includes a variety of programs and tools including:

  • The "Phones Down for 5 Challenge," an invitation for people to take a phone break in a way that works for them.
  • US Mode, an effort to help smartphone users better utilize customizable native focus settings on their smartphones.
  • In partnership with Screen Sanity, the company introduced the “Smarter Start Toolkit,” a free, downloadable kit for families looking for guidance on building better digital habits. 

For more information about UScellular’s efforts, visit UScellular.com/BuiltforUs.

*Between Nov. 28 and Dec. 6, 2023, a total of 1,000 online interviews were conducted among a nationally representative sample of U.S. consumers between 18-41 years old by Consumer Insights, in partnership with PureSpectrum.

About UScellular
UScellular is the fourth-largest full-service wireless carrier in the United States, providing national network coverage and industry-leading innovations designed to help customers stay connected to the things that matter most. The Chicago-based carrier provides a strong, reliable network supported by the latest technology and offers a wide range of communication services that enhance consumers’ lives, increase the competitiveness of local businesses and improve the efficiency of government operations. Through its After School Access Project, the company has pledged to provide hotspots and service to help up to 50,000 youth connect to reliable internet. Additionally, UScellular has price protected all of its plans, promising not to increase prices through at least the end of 2024. To learn more about UScellular, visit one of its retail stores or www.uscellular.com. To get the latest news, visit newsroom.uscellular.com.