Americans underestimate daily screen time, according to new study

Published on April 2, 2019

The average American adult spends 5.4 hours a day on their smartphone, but many people are in denial about the realities of their screen time.

Denial? Who? Me? You? 

According to a new study by Provision Living, 82-percent of people think their personal phone usage is below that national average.

Provision Living surveyed 1,000 baby boomer and 1,000 millennial iPhone users to identify similarities and differences across generational phone use. To complete the study, respondents were asked to go into their iPhone screen time settings and record the average daily screen time for the past week 10 days, and break down the minutes spent on their top applications.

The survey results indicated that it’s not just younger adults who are glued to their devices:

Millennial Screen Time Breakdown (daily):

  • 0-2 hours: 6%
  • 2-4 hours: 4%
  • 4-6 hours: 16%
  • 6-10 hours: 31%
  • 10-12 hours: 24%
  • 12+ hours: 13%

Baby Boomer Screen Time Breakdown (daily):

  • 0-2 hours: 5%
  • 2-4 hours: 4%
  • 4-6 hours: 16%
  • 6-10 hours: 25%
  • 10-12 hours: 26%
  • 12+ hours: 24%

Millennials spend an average of 5.7 hours, each day, on their phones, while baby boomers spend an average of 5 hours. However, a larger percentage of baby boomers than millennials spend an excess of 12 hours of screen time each day.

So where does the time go?

How Millennials Spend Their Screen Time (daily):

  • Facebook: 69 minutes
  • Instagram: 52 minutes
  • Texting: 48 minutes
  • Phone: 41 minutes
  • Internet: 40 minutes
  • Podcasts: 34 minutes
  • Snapchat: 27 minutes
  • Music: 27 minutes
  • Twitter: 23 minutes
  • YouTube: 10 minutes

How Baby Boomers Spend Their Screen Time (daily):

  • Facebook: 60 minutes
  • Instagram: 44 minutes
  • Mail: 43 minutes
  • Messenger: 32 minutes
  • Texting: 30 minutes
  • Phone: 24 minutes
  • Internet: 23 minutes
  • News Apps: 18 minutes
  • Twitter: 14 minutes
  • YouTube: 11 minutes

According to Provision Living’s survey, both generations spend the greatest amount of time on social media, specifically Facebook and Instagram. But things vary when it comes to which applications and how much time each generation spends their phone time. Baby boomers are more likely to spend time on email services and messenger platforms with the average boomer spending well over an hour on both apps.

Millennials, on the other hand, are more likely to text to talk. They spend an average of 48 minutes a day texting, and 41 minutes a day chatting on the phone.

Regardless of age, one-third of people underestimated how much time they spend on their smartphones. While they may have been surprised by the realities of their usage, two-thirds of people said they don’t plan on curbing their screen time.

Tricia Harte is a Columnist at GritDaily. Her column focuses on brands and emerging technology. She is a former reporter for FOX59 News.

Read more

More GD News