Emerging Tech

Pew Internet Study: ‘13% of cell owners pretended to be using their phone’

As the world continues adjusting to new technologies and social norms change at a rate on par with Moore’s Law, sociologists and pollsters have had a plethora of interesting data to examine. A new study from Pew Internet has shed some startling, if not somewhat humorous light on how Americans adults are using their cell phones. (Only 17 percent are without the device today.)

The survey of 2,277 adults found that 13 percent of cell phone users had faked checking their phone or being on it to avoid human interaction. The younger demographic, 18 to 29-year olds, cited the highest percentage of this behavior with 30 percent saying they’d avoided contact with someone by checking their phone.

Also of note, 42 percent of this demographic cited having trouble doing a task or work because their phone wasn’t nearby.

Across all demographics, “Half of all adult cell owners (51%) had used their phone at least once to get information they needed right away,” the study reported.

“One quarter (27%) said that they experienced a situation in the previous month in which they had trouble doing something because they did not have their phone at hand.” These results seem slightly more predictable, but do reveal a growing population that can’t be without its phone.

Roughly 35 percent of adults now own a smartphone.

Only 29 percent of adults say they’ve turned their cell phone off to get a break from use. Never hurts to tune out every now and then—even if you’re in the minority.

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