Researchers say we use our cellphones twice as much as we think

How often do you check your phone? How often do you think you check your phone?


According to new research, people use their smartphones for an average of five hours a day – about a third of the time they are awake – and check them about 85 times a day.

The study was  published in the journal PLOS ONE and compared the amount of time participants estimated they spent on their smartphones with their actual usage.

What it found was that people were actually on their phones twice as often as they thought.

“Psychologists typically rely on self-report data when quantifying mobile phone usage in studies, but our work suggests that estimated smartphone use should be interpreted with caution,” said Dr. David Ellis, a psychologist at Lancaster University.

The researchers argue that ‘rapid mobile phone interactions’ are becoming habitual for smartphone users.  They asked 23 participants, aged 18 to 33, to estimate how much time they had spent on their phone.

An app was also installed on their smartphones that recorded all of their actual usage over a two-week period which included activities like checking the time, looking at message notifications or social media alerts, phone calls and playing music.

Another key finding was that smartphone use was typically confined to short bursts – more than half of uses lasted less than 30 seconds.

More information: Lancaster University

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