NEWS12 September 2014

Spare time being changed by mobile technology

News UK

UK — Reading newspapers and books and calling friends are losing out to using mobiles to check emails, browse the internet and play games — as people turn to connected activities in their spare moments, according to research from the Future Foundation.


The findings are part of the Future Foundation’s nVision Research looking at how British consumers spend time on popular activities. When asked ‘when you have a spare 20 minutes while out and about, which of the following do you do?’ the most popular response was nothing/just relax but the other responses all demonstrated how time spent out of the home has been affected by connected mobile technology.

Preference for activities involving smartphones – such as checking email, browsing the internet and playing games – have grown consistently since 2009. More than 30% would check email in 2014.

In comparison, more traditional ‘analogue’ activities are declining – most notably reading a newspaper or book. In 2009, more than 40% said they’d read a newspaper compared with about 20% in 2014.

The Future Foundation has identified the trend — Smart Boredom — where dead time is increasingly being eliminated from people’s lives, as even the smallest moments of time can be filled with a smartphone-related activity.

It identified six types of people: relaxers ( 42%) who are predominantly older and still relax in spare moments; newspaper readers ( 14%); email and internet ( 13%) — they are spread across the ages, guided by phone activity; gamers ( 13%) who are predominantly younger; music ( 12%) and multi-taskers ( 7%) who tend to be younger and more likely to be male, often feeling under time pressure.

And the digital distraction is also evident in the bedroom. Three quarters of 16 – 34 year olds say they browse the internet in bed; 43% of employed people check their work emails and 61% of Gen Y respondents watch TV.



10 years ago

Before any comment can be made it really is necessary to state: Type of sampling eg random location, access panel Type of interviewing CAPI, CATI web etc Sample size Othewise it is not even worth reading

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10 years ago

This research was conducted online to a sample of 5,000 GB respondents and is weighted to be nationally representative. The analysis is based on a question that was part of a 20 minute questionnaire that was in field in February 2014

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