The daily time spent on smartphones has increased by 25% on average in India during the pandemic to almost 7 hours a day since April, as people depend more on gadgets for study/work from home as well as entertainment, a new study claimed on Monday. Nearly 70% of Indians feel that if their smartphone usage continues to increase, it is likely to impact their mental/physical health, according to the study by smartphone brand Vivo.
The study found that average time spent on smartphones in a day has been on the rise, growing 11% to 5.5 hours in March 2020 (pre-COVID) from about 4.9 hours on average in 2019. This has increased by another 25% to 6.9 hours since April (post-COVID).
"Amid the socially-distant lives that the pandemic pushed us to lead, the smartphone emerged as the central nervous system for everything be it working or learning from home or staying connected with friends and family," said Nipun Marya, Director-Brand Strategy, Vivo India.
Additionally, 74% of respondents said that periodically switching off their mobile phone can help them spend more time with family. However, only 18 per cent of users have actually switched off their phone on their own.
According to the study titled 'Smartphones and their impact on human relationships 2020,' Indians are spending more time on the smartphone since lockdown for work from home (75%) OTT (59%), social media (55%) and gaming (45%).
Meanwhile, 79% users agreed that a smartphone helps them stay connected with their loved ones.
While smartphone emerged as a necessity and had given much-needed flexibility to people, its excessive usage has triggered addiction. Nearly 88% users agree that people point them out for using the phone when they are with them, 46% people pick up the phone at least five times in an hour-long conversation.
The study, conducted by CyberMedia research (CMR) for Vivo, had 2,000 respondents aged 15-45 years across eight cities including the four metros.
With IANS inputs