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Chennai, NFAPost: About 66% of Indians believe that their smartphone improves their quality of life. A shocking 70% of Indians feel that if their smartphone usage continues increasing, it is likely to impact their mental/physical health. Additionally, 74% of respondents said that periodically switching off their mobile phone can help them spend more time with family. However, only 18% of users have actually switched off their phone on their own, says a study.

vivo, the innovative global smartphone brand, has announced the findings of the second edition of the study titled Smartphones and their impact on human relationships 2020, that showcases the impact of mobile devices on consumers in this year of social distancing.

As the smartphone becomes the centre of universe in our lives, its impact on society, on behaviours and every day human connections is significant. The study evaluates and throws light on the various dimensions of increasing smartphone usage – extent of usage, impact of lock down on usage patterns, impact on personal health and social relationships.

Smartphones have become an important tool in our day-to-day routines, helping us connect with our friends, family and the world in general. This significance became utmost when COVID-19 and ensued lockdowns hit people this year, forcing them to stay indoors for their safety. Hence, a smartphone became our lifeline – from improving our overall quality of life to helping us feel safe, secure and entertained in distant lands. However, excessive usage of smartphones is triggering addiction among its users. 

vivo India Director-Brand Strategy Nipun Marya said, “The year 2020 was unusual – a year that nobody had imagined. Amidst 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. However, while smartphones have given much-needed flexibility to people, its excessive use has led to addiction among users, and that in turn is impacting human relationships and behaviour.”

“As a brand that wants to bring joy to people, vivo India aims to sensitize people about the benefits of responsible use of smartphones through the second edition of ‘Smartphones and their Impact on Human Relationships’ study,” Marya added.

The study was commissioned by vivo and executed by CyberMedia Research (CMR), a market research and advisory firm, across top 8 cities in India viz., Delhi, Mumbai, Kolkata, Bengaluru, Chennai, Hyderabad, Ahmedabad and Pune. The report cuts across age-groups and demographics: youth, working professionals and housewives spanning the age groups of 15 to 45. The total number of respondents were 2000 out of which 30% were females and 70% were males.

The findings below suggest how smartphones are the central nervous system for everything that consumers do:

  • 25% increase in average daily time spent on smartphone has increased in the post-COVID era
  • Indians are spending more time on smartphone since lockdown (April 2020) – OTT (59%), Social Media (55%) and Gaming (45%)
  • The smartphones is the central nervous system for everything that consumers do.
  • 79% users agree that a smartphone helps them stay connected with their loved ones
  • 66% users agree that smartphones improve overall quality of life

Addiction – While smartphone emerged as a necessity and had given much-needed flexibility to people, its excessive usage has triggered addiction:

  • 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
  • 70% users feel excessive use of smartphones is impacting their mental and physical health
  • 84% users check their phones within 15 minutes of waking up

Relationships – The smartphone addiction resulting from excessive usage of smartphone is impacting human behaviour and relationships:

  • 89% users agree that excessive use of smartphone is having an impact on the quality of time spent with their loved ones
  • 74% feel that it is important to have a life separate from your smartphones
  • 70% users feel that mindless usage of smartphones is adversely impacting their relationships

Empathy – Let’s #SwitchOff for a while for a healthy mind and a healthier life

  • 73% would be happier if they spent less time on smartphones
  • 74% feel that periodically switching off their mobile phone can actually help them spending more time with your family
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