How much time are people really spending on their phones?

The time that people spend on their phones on a daily basis has significantly increased since the introduction of smartphones. Calling and sending text messages used to be the basic phone uses, but phones nowadays have a lot of features that enable a myriad of functionalities.

Recent research has shown that the average person uses a total of 4 hours daily on their phones. It also shows that young adults of college-age, between 18-24 years, are the group that spend most time on their phones. The hours of use decreases steadily for older demographics. In comparison to studies carried out ten years ago, it’s evident that the amount of time spent using phones by the average person daily has doubled in that duration.


This can be attributed to the fact that phones allow us to do so much more now. Here are some of the most common tasks that phones are used for today:

Communication – Communication through mobile phones has revolved from the simple acts of texting and calling to include social media platforms such as WhatsApp and Facebook, which most people now use to keep in touch with their friends and families.

Research – The smartphone performs most of the tasks that were primarily only capable on a computer. People can now carry extensive research about anything on their phones so long as they have an internet connection.

Shopping – Online shopping is a growing trend that has been further enhanced by accessibility of smartphones. Many phone users now shop online as it’s easy and convenient.

Entertainment – A phone is a gateway to various forms of entertainment. One can play games, watch videos and listen to music.

Information – Gone are the days when one had to buy the daily newspaper to know what’s going on. Phone users can access a multitude of online news sites and articles, keeping them well informed of what’s going on in the world.

One study shows that mobile phones are the most used form of digital media consumption, at 65%. Smartphones have taken over PCs in many aspects. Of the four hours spent daily on the phone, sites that take up almost half of that time are:


These are all social media platforms, and this shows the big impact social media has on phone users. Other than spending time on these platforms, a lot of the rest of the time is used on phone applications. These are the ones that allow various tasks, and there are millions of them available for smartphone use.

The steady increase in the time spent using phones is tied to the fact that our lives are continually becoming more technologically integrated. In fact, among common daily tasks, only watching the TV has been found to take up more time that the phone.

While a lot of usage of phone may be seen in a negative light, a lot of people are actually using them for productive things. One should draw the line at their phones usage when it starts affecting their responsibilities. And yes, there are numerous apps that can help you track your phone usage.