Six In 10 Britons ‘Hooked’ On Smartphone

The UK is spending more time online than ever with the average person on the internet for 25 hours each week, according to an Ofcom report.


On average Britons spend eight hours and 45 minutes a day using media and communications including TV and the internet – more time than they spend asleep.

To escape the flood of information, 15 million internet users have tried a digital detox – purposefully logging off from connected devices.

Jane Ramble, director of market intelligence at Ofcom, told Sky News: “What we’ve found in the last few years is that the smartphone has become more and more important to people as the main means of going online and that many people are attached to their phone.

“It’s a great way of staying up to date with what’s happening at home and at work, but today six in ten people have said they are hooked on these portable devices and I think it’s that shift that is causing people to reflect on this and decided to get a bit of a breather.”

However, exactly the same proportion of those surveyed – 34% – said they would never like to try a digital detox.

Some 71% of UK adults now own a smartphone – up from 66% last year, the survey of 2,025 adults and 500 teenagers found.

The figures also showed 86% of adults now have home internet access and 75% say the internet is important to their lives.

But it can prove too much of a distraction.

Four in ten adults feel that they are ignored by a friend or relative at least once a week because they are glued to their smartphones.

And 12% of people say they bump into someone on the street at least once a week while they are looking at their mobiles.

Although older people are spending more time online and using smartphones more, a generational divide remains.

Of those aged 65 and over, 39% think it is “unacceptable” to take a selfie in public places.

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