Survey shows Irish people among top smartphones users in Europe

Half of Irish people think they use their phone too much

Survey shows Irish people among top smartphones users in Europe

File photo

Three million Irish people now own or have access to a smartphone.

A new survey has revealed that we check our phone on average 57 times a day.

While half of Irish people think they use their mobile phone too much.

The study from Deloitte also found that the use of video calling by those aged over-65 has increased from 25% in 2016 to 48% in 2017.

The Mobile Consumer Survey says 85% of 18-75-year-olds in Ireland use their smartphones while walking - the equivalent of around 2.8 million people.

Just under one-third - approximately one million people - also admit to using their smartphones while crossing the road.

The survey analysed the mobile usage habits of 1,000 people in Ireland.

It found that 90% of 18-75-year-olds now own or have access to a smartphone - this puts Ireland among the top users of smartphones in Europe.

On average, across Europe, 88% of people own, or have access to a smartphone.

While the number of people with access to a tablet here stands at 71% - the equivalent of 2.36 million people.

Richard Howard, head of technology, media and telecommunications at Deloitte, said: "Mobile devices are a relatively new 'addiction' to our social fabric and they form an important part of our daily activities and interactions.

"Social norms will develop over time, and it will be interesting to see if the fear of being without one's phone - nomophobia - starts to become more widely recognised.

"We expect to see phone manufacturers continue to put more usage controls into devices to prevent dangerous usage."

Mobile addiction?

The research shows that Ireland's love of smartphones continues to affect almost every aspect of daily life, including at night-time.

Some 44% check their phone during the night, with checking the time (33%), social media interactions (11%) and instant messages/text messages (10%) the top three nocturnal activities.

Among 18-24-year-olds, 60% check their phones in the middle of the night - while just under 30% check social media notifications.

Overall, 40% of Irish people look at their smartphones within five minutes of waking, and 76% do so within half an hour.

And at the end of the day, 30% check their phone within five minutes of going to sleep.

The research also reveals that 89% of people use their phone when spending time with family and friends, and 74% do so when in a restaurant with family and friends.

In terms of communicating with others, consumers use their phones most for text messaging - 68% do this on a daily basis.

This is followed by voice calls (65%), instant messaging (64%), e-mail (63%) and social networks (59%).

While 54% of Irish consumers read the news on their phone on a daily basis, 25% watch short videos or live posts/stories, 21% watch videos shared on instant messaging networks and 18% take photos.

Just 2% use their phones on a daily basis to bet or gamble.

One-fifth of Irish consumers have between 11 and 20 apps on their phone and 19% have between six and 10.

Awareness of usage

For the first time, this year's research captured smartphone owners' self-awareness of their device usage.

Half of Irish people think they use their mobile phone too much.

In response to how often they use their smartphone, Irish consumers responded with an average of 57 times a day, compared to a European average of 41 times a day.

Some 16% of Irish consumers admitted to checking their phone more than 100 times a day.

While half of consumers think they use their phone too much, nearly 60% think their partners use their phone too much.

More women than men (57% v 37%) believe they are using their phones too much, and this perception is most apparent in the 25-34 age group (62%), compared to the 65-75 age group (21%).

While 45% of people try to use their mobile less, only one-quarter admit to being successful in curbing their mobile usage.

Nearly half (47%) of Irish consumers check bank balances on their smartphones, 41% browse shopping websites or apps and 39% research a product or service.