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Phone and internet use: Number of mobile calls drops for first time

The number of voice calls made on mobile phones in the UK fell for the first time ever in 2017 – despite the fact we seem hooked on our devices.
That is according to the latest report from telecoms regulator Ofcom, which charts what it describes as a decade of digital dependence.
A total of 78% of all adults now own a smartphone.
On average, people check them once every 12 minutes during their waking hours, the study claims.
Two in five adults look at their phone within five minutes of waking, while a third check their phones just before falling asleep, according to the report.
A high percentage (71%) say they never turn off their phones and 78% say they could not live without it.
While three-quarters of the British public still regard voice calling as an important function of their phones, more (92%) say web browsing is crucial.
The report finds that the total volume of calls made on mobiles fell by 1.7% in 2017, even though making them is the cheapest it has ever been.
That does not necessarily mean people are talking less, however, because Ofcom has not collated figures for chat apps such as WhatsApp and Facebook Messenger, which could account for some of the decline.
“Over the last decade, people’s lives have been transformed by the rise of the smartphone, together with better access to the internet and new services,” said Ofcom’s director of market intelligence Ian Macrae.
“Whether it is working flexibly, keeping up with current affairs or shopping online, we can do more on the move than ever before.
“But while people appreciate their smartphone as their constant companion, some are finding themselves feeling overloaded when online, or frustrated when they’re not.”
The Louis family all depend on their smartphones but for different reasons,
While mum Kirsten uses it from the moment she wakes up to check social media, the family calendar, the weather as well as for shopping, her husband Andre – who is visually impaired – relies on it for a whole range of things, including booking taxis and reading emails.

Source: BBC

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