The number of hours the average Australian uses their smartphone is startling but not surprising. In a recent study conducted by Decibel Research in conjunction with Huawei shows that the average Australian uses their phone 2.5 hours a day or 38 full days a year. In regards to genders it shows than men are also a little more attached to their phones then women, with 74% confirming they hold their phone throughout the day, where as with women it was 60%.
Not specific to Australia but research done by dscout shows that the average smart phone user touches their phone an astonishing 2,617 times every day (about twice a minute). Amazingly those in the top 10% on average touched their phone 5,400 times a day.
Key findings of report: Australian Smartphone use
- Average Australian uses their phone 2.5 hours a day
- 70% confess to storing embarrassing information on their smartphones
- 10% admit they have used their phone during bedroom time with their partners
- 60% of Australians under the age of 30 admit to taking selfies to check themselves out
- 46% uses their phone to monitor their fitness routines and goal achievement
- 74% of men hold their phone all day compared to 60% of women
- 52% of consumer are currently satisfied with their smartphone
- 42% of users describe the battery life as being a key concern when selecting a new phone
- Camera quality is more important to women than men when selecting a new smartphone
The bigger question is whether Australians are addicted to their smartphones?
Well it all depends on how you define addiction, in this case does smartphone use become compulsive and interfere with ordinary life responses such as work and relationships. Well to an extent an excess amount can interfere in your life, take for example in the UK where it was recently reported that smartphone use is having detrimental effects on many relationships. A recent study indicated that 75% of women believed that smartphones were ruining their relationships. In another study it showed that people were overly dependent on their smart devices and were less satisfied with their relationship because of it.
For parents, the over use of smartphones can play a major part of how children consider their importance as Psychologist Catherine Steiner-Adair states; “We are behaving in ways that certainly tell children they don’t matter, they’re not interesting to us, they’re not as compelling as anybody, anything, any ping that may interrupt our time with them”. Simply put our children are playing second fiddle to our devices and your children should be your priority not your Facebook feed (well that’s what I decided).
Another area where smartphones are impacting our lives is at the workplace, with this increased usage and many who suffer from nomophobia, the continuous urge to constantly check their phones, it has to be making an impact. These distractions not only reduce productivity but also increase the employees stress levels. Many businesses are now implementing phone policies to curb the use of smartphones in the work place.
The main area of concern when it comes to smartphone addiction is the inappropriate use of phones while driving a vehicle. In Australia the use of smartphones accounts for 22% of car accidents and a mind blowing 77% of accidents involving trucks. A study conducted in 2011 by the government shows that nearly 60% of drivers continue to use their phones while driving, even though it is illegal and has severe fines when caught.
So it would be safe to say that we may have a bit of a problem when it comes to the use of smartphones, is it an addiction or is just the way the world is evolving? Which ever it is, it seems that we as individuals need to be aware of how the over use of this technology is impacting out lives. Personally at the start of 2017 I decided to curb my use and to do this i decided to stop using Facebook. I felt Facebook was consuming way too much of my time and becoming far too much of a distraction. I can say a month on from ending my ‘somewhat’ addiction to Facebook (a major part of my phone use) I feel so much better. I no longer feel the need to check my phone, I feel less stressed from all the bullshit I used to read online and best of all, it has made make more time for my family.
Business Insider – Research shows we touch our cell phones 2,617 times per day
Psychology Today – Addiction