Research Article: Smartphone Addiction Inventory (SPAI): Translation, adaptation and validation of the tool in Spanish adult population

Date Published: October 17, 2018

Publisher: Public Library of Science

Author(s): Conchín Simó-Sanz, M.ª Luisa Ballestar-Tarín, Antonio Martínez-Sabater, Camillo Gualtieri.


The wide functionality and the vast range of attributes offered by smartphones has led to a substantial increase in the average amount of time these devices are used per day. An excessive use of these tools has been shown to result in symptomatology similar to psychological disorders caused by substance addiction. In Spain, smartphone use has risen exponentially but the effects of this increase remain unclear. Therefore, an instrument is required to help determine the extent of smartphone addiction in the Spanish population. The Smartphone Addiction Inventory (SPAI) is a valid and reliable mean to identify and measure smartphone addiction and so, the aim of this research is the translation and adaptation of SPAI to Spanish, as well as the analysis of its psychometric properties in a Spanish adult population of 2,958 adults, at the University of Valencia. A multiphase-interactive model has been used, based on classical translation–back-translation methods to translate and adapt the SPAI. Moreover, a confirmatory factor analysis to verify that the inventory showed acceptable goodness of fit indices (χ2293 = 4795.909, Comparative Fit Index = 0.927, Tucker–Lewis Index = 0.919, Root Mean Square Error of approximation = 0.072, and Standardised Root Mean square Residual = 0.051) has been carried out. Also good reliability has been found for the global inventory (Cronbach’s alpha = 0.949), and each of its corresponding factors: compulsive behaviour, functional impairment, abstinence, and tolerance (Cronbach’s alpha = 0.856, 0.888, 0.855, and 0.712, respectively). Hence, the SPAI has been adequately translated and adapted for its use in Spain and therefore it is a useful tool for evaluating the degree of smartphone addiction in the Spanish adult population.

Partial Text

According to the International Telecommunication Union, Spain is placed 26th in the Information and Communication Technologies Development Index ranking [1]. This worldwide valid index is in charge of controlling and comparing Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) evolution among countries. Smartphone use in Spain has been spread to all areas of work, social, and family life. The presence of these devices in Spanish households has increased by 9.5% over the last ten years [2], and it is estimated that an average user consults their smartphone about 150 times a day and that 80% of users sleep next to it [3]. The high presence of this device has motivated an increasing number of researches to investigate the potential dangers of its use [4], due to some negative repercussions for health that have already been shown following their intense daily use [5–7].

In this study we have obtained the Spanish version of the “Smartphone addiction Inventory” following all the phases of the translation and adaptation process and it has confirmed with appropriate indexes of validity and reliability the model of four factors (compulsive behaviour, functional impairment, withdrawal and tolerance) raised by Lin et al. [33] in their study.




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