Mobile phone use changes with the weather

Mobile phone habits can change with the weather, a study has found.

When it is cold, or uncomfortably hot and sticky, people are more likely to make longer calls to close friends and family, scientists have discovered.

During unpleasant wea-ther, callers tended to withdraw from their wider network of acquaintances.

Lead researcher Dr Santi Phithakkitnukoon, from the University of Newcastle, said: “The fact that mobile phones have become an indispensable part of many people’s lives means that they provide an opportunity to measure human beha-viour and social dynamics, like never before.

“Our mood, health and how active we are all vary with the weather.

“We found that during uncomfortable weather our ‘ringing anyone’ behaviour declined.”

The research was published in the online journal Public Library of Science, ONE.

Dr Phithakkitnukoon’s team analysed the call patterns of almost 23,000 mobile phone users in Lisbon.

Examining anonymised data records, they categorised calls into “strong” and “weak” social ties.

“Strong ties are people who are socially close to us and whose social circles closely overlap with our own,” said Dr Phithakkitnukoon.

Under uncomfortable weather conditions, there was an increased chance of calls exceeding six minutes, the study showed.

© Irish Examiner Ltd. All rights reserved

Email Updates

Receive our lunchtime briefing straight to your inbox

More in this Section

Shock death of Dursey Island cable car operator Paddy Sheehan

7,618 horses killed for meat in Ireland

Fans in court over pre-match showdown

Price of Dublin 3-bedroom semi-D tops €400k as prices increase in Cork by 3% in last three months


Breaking Stories

Justice Minister defends Garda Commissioner as she orders independent probe

Parts of Cork and Kildare may be added to rent pressure zones

North's spending controls handed to British civil servant

Operation to recover bodies of two Rescue 116 crewmen 'may not be possible' today due to weather

Lifestyle

Are left-handed people in their right minds?

Liz Bonnin gets a 'sobering reminder' of the power of nature in series on the Galapagos

There's little help or understanding about Lyme disease in Ireland

More From The Irish Examiner