University of Oulu

Lopez-Fernandez, O., Männikkö, N., Kääriäinen, M., Griffiths, M., Kuss, D. (2018) Mobile gaming and problematic smartphone use: A comparative study between Belgium and Finland. Journal of Behavioral Addictions, 7 (1), 88-99. doi:10.1556/2006.6.2017.080

Mobile gaming and problematic smartphone use : a comparative study between Belgium and Finland

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Author: Lopez-Fernandez, Olatz1,2; Männikkö, Niko3; Kääriäinen, Maria4,5;
Organizations: 1International Gaming Research Unit, Psychology Department, Nottingham Trent University
2Laboratory for Experimental Psychopathology, Institut de recherche en sciences psychologiques, Université catholique de Louvain
3Department of Social Services and Rehabilitation, Oulu University of Applied Sciences
4Research Unit of Nursing Science and Health Management, Oulu University Hospital, University of Oulu
5Research Unit of Nursing Science and Health Management, Oulu University Hospital
Format: article
Version: published version
Access: open
Online Access: PDF Full Text (PDF, 0.2 MB)
Persistent link:
Language: English
Published: Wolters Kluwer, 2018
Publish Date: 2018-05-22


Background and aims: Gaming applications have become one of the main entertainment features on smartphones, and this could be potentially problematic in terms of dangerous, prohibited, and dependent use among a minority of individuals. A cross-national study was conducted in Belgium and Finland. The aim was to examine the relationship between gaming on smartphones and self-perceived problematic smartphone use via an online survey to ascertain potential predictors.

Methods: The Short Version of the Problematic Mobile Phone Use Questionnaire (PMPUQ-SV) was administered to a sample comprising 899 participants (30% male; age range: 18–67 years).

Results: Good validity and adequate reliability were confirmed regarding the PMPUQ-SV, especially the dependence subscale, but low prevalence rates were reported in both countries using the scale. Regression analysis showed that downloading, using Facebook, and being stressed contributed to problematic smartphone use. Anxiety emerged as predictor for dependence. Mobile games were used by one-third of the respective populations, but their use did not predict problematic smartphone use. Very few cross-cultural differences were found in relation to gaming through smartphones.

Conclusion: Findings suggest mobile gaming does not appear to be problematic in Belgium and Finland.

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Series: Journal of behavioral addictions
ISSN: 2062-5871
ISSN-E: 2063-5303
ISSN-L: 2062-5871
Volume: 7
Issue: 1
Pages: 88 - 99
DOI: 10.1556/2006.6.2017.080
Type of Publication: A1 Journal article – refereed
Field of Science: 515 Psychology
Copyright information: © 2017 The Author(s). This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium for non-commercial purposes, provided the original author and source are credited, a link to the CC License is provided, and changes – if any – are indicated.