Lee Yun-soo has some regrets that she replaced her faded old clamshell phone with a smartphone six months ago.
The South Korean high-school student enjoys tweeting funny photos, messaging friends and playing online games. But she said her smartphone is increasingly disrupting her life at school and home.
'I hate doing it but I can't help it,' she said as she fiddled with the palm-size gadget.
Ms. Lee is among the roughly 1 in 5 students in South Korea who the government said is addicted to smartphone use. This addiction is defined as spending more than seven hours a day using the phone and experiencing symptoms such as anxiety, insomnia and depression when cut off from the device.
Earlier this month, the South Korean government said it plans to provide nationwide counseling programs for youngsters by the end of the year and train teachers on how to deal with students with addiction. Taxpayer-funded counseling treatment here is already exists for adult addicts.
South Korea, home to the world's biggest smartphone maker, Samsung Electronics, prides itself on being the global leader in high-speed Internet and advanced mobile technology. Koreans are some of the first adopters of new digital devices.
With a mobile-phone penetration rate of more than 100% -- meaning some individuals carry more than one handset -- and smartphones nearly two-thirds of those devices, the government is setting measures to deal with the problems such heavy exposure has spawned. For comparison, the smartphone penetration rate in the U.S. was 50% as of June, according to the International Telecommunication Union.
韩国的手机渗透率超过100%，也就是说一些人有不止一部手机，而其中智能手机占了近三分之二，在这种情况下，韩国政府正采取措施，应对这种大规模手机持有量所带来的问题。相比之下，国际电信联盟(International Telecommunication Union)的数据显示，截至今年6月美国的智能手机渗透率为50%。
Korea has had problems with online-game addiction among teenagers for years thanks to widespread availability of high-speed Internet services. Now that smartphone penetration among teens and children is rising at a faster pace than other groups, the age at which people find it hard to wean themselves from a smartphone is getting lower.
The smartphone penetration rate in children ages 6 to 19 tripled to 65% last year from a year earlier, according to the Korea Communications Commission. Meanwhile, the smartphone addiction rate among teens was 18%, double the addiction rate of 9.1% for adults, according to another government survey. According to the Pew Research Center, 37% of teens in the U.S. had smartphones in 2012.
据韩国通信委员会(Korea Communications Commission)的数据，在6岁至19岁的青少年当中，智能手机渗透率去年同比上升了两倍，至65%。与此同时，另一项政府调查显示，青少年的智能手机成瘾率为18%，是成年人9.1%的成瘾率的两倍。皮尤研究中心(Pew Research Center)的数据显示，2012年美国有37%的青少年拥有智能手机。
'The situation is already serious,' said Hwang Tae-hee, an official at South Korea's Ministry of Gender Equality &Family.
韩国性别平等与家庭部(Ministry of Gender Equality &Family)官员Hwang Tae-hee说，情况已经非常严重。
The problem is surfacing in other tech-savvy places such as Japan and Taiwan. A survey in Japan found that smartphone use among high school girls tripled last year.
As well as distracting students from their studies, experts say it is damaging interpersonal skills.
'Students today are very bad at reading facial expressions,' said Setsuko Tamura, a professor of applied psychology at Tokyo Seitoku University. 'When you spend more time texting people instead of talking to them, you don't learn how to read nonverbal language.'
东京成德大学(Tokyo Seitoku University)应用心理学教授田村节子(Setsuko Tamura)说，现在的学生非常不善于观察面部表情。当你把更多的时间用在跟人发短信，而不是和别人交谈上，你就不知道如何解读肢体语言了。
In Taiwan, the phenomenon of constantly checking email or social media has led to the label 'heads-down tribes.' A survey by the Taiwan Network Information Center showed that the number of people accessing the Internet via laptops, tablets or smartphones in the past six months has doubled to a record 5.35 million from a year earlier.
在台湾，经常查看电子邮件或社交媒体信息的现象导致了“低头族”这个标签的出现。台湾网路资讯中心(Taiwan Network Information Center)的一项调查显示，过去六个月，通过笔记本电脑、平板电脑或智能手机访问互联网的人数同比增加一倍，达到创纪录的535万人。
It is standard practice in Korean schools for teachers to collect mobile devices from their students during school hours -- with patchy success. 'Some of them hide their phones and use them during the break or even in class,' said Lee Kyoung-shin, a high-school teacher in Incheon, west of Seoul.
Smartphones are often the most important possession for a young person, said Ms. Tamura of Tokyo Seitoku University. 'It represents their connection to their friends. Not participating could mean exclusion from a circle of friends, so we always find that children are terribly anxious to respond to messages,' she said.
Smartphone one-upmanship has led to incidents of bullying in Korean schools, where a 12-stage smartphone ranking sets the latest models as 'kings' and earlier models as 'slaves.' Theft is common, said Kim Hoi-kyung, a school supervisor at the Seoul Metropolitan Office of Education. The office in June decided to provide up to 20 million won ($17,830) per school this year to help teachers pay for losses of smartphones in their possession.
智能手机的档次之分导致了韩国学校里的一些恃强凌弱事件，学生们将智能手机分为12个等级，最新款的机型是“国王”，较为老旧的机型则是“奴隶”。首尔市教育局(Seoul Metropolitan Office of Education)的校监Kim Hoi-kyung说，偷盗行为很常见。该局今年6月决定，今年为每所学校提供至多2,000万韩圆（17,830美元），帮助教师们赔偿其个人所有智能手机的损失。
Lee Yun-soo, the 18-year-old high-school student, has found a way to avoid the distraction of her smartphone during exam periods: She removes the SIM card, which stores phone numbers, from her Android phone and inserts it into an older, Internet-disabled phone.
'I keep asking myself: 'Why did I buy a smartphone?' Sometimes I stay up all night using Facebook and tweeting. After switching to a smartphone, I quickly became addicted.' she said.