You see it everywhere…people talking, texting, reading their smartphones. They’re playing games, checking Facebook, or scrolling through twitter feeds.
What they’re not doing is paying attention, or close attention to their surroundings. We’ve become more and dependent on this handheld devices.
How bad is it?
A new survey released by Deloitte confirms American consumers’ dependence on mobile phones continues to rise as the platform of choice for work, home and self, across an increasing range of tasks.
Americans now check their smartphone more than 9 billion times per day and increasingly do so while engaged in other activities.
The sixth edition of Deloitte’s “Global Mobile Consumer Survey” uncovered many interesting findings around American behavior, trends and general lifestyle shifts associated with the unprecedented usage of mobile devices today.
Consumer phone addiction continues to rise across a broad range of work, home and personal tasks including:
Collectively U.S. smartphone users check their phones in the aggregate more than 9 billion times per day, up roughly 1 billion times per day since 2015, a 13 percent increase.
Nearly half of those surveyed check their phones in the middle of the night – meaning as a nation, roughly 100 million people are waking up and checking their phone each and every night.
Of all those looking at their phones in the middle of the night, more than 40 million people are checking social media.
For the first time, 25-34 year-olds are the leading age demographic in mobile technology usage and purchased more smart phones in 2016 than any other age group; more than 75 percent of this group check their phone in the middle of the night.
While nearly two-thirds of all consumers check their phone within 15-minutes of waking up, 90 percent do so within an hour.
Forty-five percent of consumers report more use of video calls compared with last year, 44 percent report more instant messaging, 35 percent report more social media use, and 25 percent report more traditional voice calls.
Outside of work, 93 percent of consumers noted “using their phone while shopping” making it the No. 1 leisurely activity performed on consumers’ phones.
Wearables, Internet of Things and autonomous cars gain traction across key consumer segments: the answer to consumers demand for personalization.
With the biggest increase in IoT overall, interest in purchasing an autonomous vehicle is up 50 percent since 2015, with nearly two-thirds of consumers eventually willing to consider owning or riding in an autonomous car. The survey notes that 16 percent of those aged 25-34 are ready to take the plunge now – nearly double of last year’s figure.
In 2016, interest in home-based IoT showed the largest year-over-year increase (among home, car and personal), jumping 12 percentage points from 53 percent to 65 percent, surpassing interest in personal wearables.
Willingness to pay for IoT services has risen considerably, with half of consumers saying they are willing to pay for home monitoring services, and 48 percent indicating that they would pay for home control – both up roughly by 20 percent since last year.
Nearly a third of consumers also think smart energy, smart transportation and smart health care would make their communities more livable.
Mobile payments (mPayments) and mobile shopping remain key growth opportunities
Despite slower growth since last year, there is still considerable interest in mPayments, suggesting the potential remains for the technology to grow.
More than half of consumers (58 percent) report they have used their phones to browse a shopping website or app, with 38 percent saying they do so at least once a week.
Forty-three percent of 25-34 year olds report paying for products with or through their mobile phones at least once a week.
The in-store mobile payments location that consumers regard as most useful are coffee shops, with 39 percent saying they find this beneficial.
Other popular locations where consumers report using mobile payment services are fast food restaurants (38 percent), grocery stores (36 percent) and taxi cabs (32 percent). Only 6 percent would not find any location beneficial to use their mobile to pay.
Consumers are willing to share their data, to an extent
The survey found that, in general, consumers are open to sharing some level of personal information online, but actual awareness of what is being shared is not ubiquitous – nor are the methods people use to secure their phones.
Thirty-seven percent of consumers indicated that they are willing to share usage data with select companies, as long as they can choose what information they share.
One-third of consumers aged 55 or over, and one-fifth of all consumers believe they have never shared any information online.
When unlocking their phones or authorizing mobile payments or other transactions, 63 percent of respondents prefer to use PIN passwords over fingerprint readers (31 percent), and 24 percent don’t use any method at all to keep their phones secure.
4G, 5G, Wi-Fi and original equipment manufacturers continue to influence consumer behaviors
Mobile devices have become an essential point of connection between consumers and the outside world, presenting multiple opportunities for businesses to monetize connectivity, through both services and devices. As the ecosystem evolves, there has been a shift in key purchasing and usage behaviors: The “2016 Deloitte Global Mobile Consumer Survey” is the biggest and most extensive to date, including 53,000 respondents, aged 18 to 74, across five continents and 31 countries.