Americans More Mobile Device-Obsessed Than Ever

Americans are more engaged with their mobile devices than ever – collectively looking at them 8 billion times a day – according to Deloitte’s Global Mobile Consumer Survey.    The report, in its fifth edition, examines behaviors and attitudes toward all things mobile device-related. Nearly half (48%) of the survey population check their phones up to 25 times per day. With about 185 million smartphone users in the U.S., this is where the “8 billion” figure comes into play.         The data also shows people prefer (slightly) to look at their phones in the morning than in the evening. Seventeen percent of mobile device owners check their phones immediately upon waking, up from 14% in 2014. In terms of age, the 18-24 population looks at their phone approximately 50% more than the next closest age group. This age group is also the one showing greatest concern for mobile security and privacy, according to the survey. All of this mobile device engagement has created a very “distracted” consumer landscape with unprecedented levels of multitasking. The number one leisure activity where American consumers use their phone simultaneously is “while out shopping,” at 61%. Also of note, “more than one-third of all consumers use their smartphones predominately without the prompt of an incoming message or alert.” That is to imply, the function of mobile devices has long evolved from simply a means of communication. Deloitte’s survey has dubbed 2015 the year of mobile payments. The number of people using a phone to make an in-store payment has nearly quadrupled from 5% to 18%, though in-store payments remain a largely untapped opportunity compared with using a mobile device to browse shopping websites/apps, paying bills and making online purchases. The most common reasons given by respondents as to why they avoid using their phones to make in-store payments are that they do not think they are secure enough and they do not understand the potential benefits of doing so. When it comes to the Internet of Things (IoT), more survey respondents said they use their phone to monitor their health and fitness than to monitor their homes or utilities. As for IoT devices, 10% of consumers own a fitness band (double that of last year), while 4% own a smart watch.