Here's how often Irish people check their phones a day

Here's how often Irish people check their phones a day

The figures come from the Deloitte Ireland’s Digital Consumer Trends 2020 report. File picture

Irish people check their phones 58 times a day on average, according to a new study.

The survey also found that the majority of phone users (87%) check their phone within the first hour of waking up.

The figures come from Deloitte Ireland’s Digital Consumer Trends 2020 report, which was published today.

The survey of 1,000 people was carried out between May and June of this year.

It found that a third of people check their phones within the first five minutes of waking up, a stat that is up on the 2019 figure.

Smartphone ownership stands at 90%, which is a decrease for the second year in a row.

In 2019, 91% of people owned a smartphone while that figure was 94% in 2018.

Other stats from the survey found:

  • Almost a third - 32% - of us look at our phones over 50 times a day.
  • 65% of 18-24-year-olds believe they use their smartphones too much.
  • 62% of us use our phone to check our bank balances, and for over 50% it is the preferred device to do so.

Younger people feel that they are using their phones too much, according to the survey.

Overall, 46% of respondents felt that they are using their smartphones too much, a figure which rises to 65% in the 18-24 age bracket and 66% of 25-34s.

The 35-44 and 45-54 age groups are also more likely than average to believe that they overuse their smartphones at 63% and 52% respectively.

Like smartphones, laptop ownership also saw a slight decrease at 83%, compared to 84% in 2019.

Younger people think they use their phones too much.
Younger people think they use their phones too much.

Tablet devices saw the biggest year-on-year increase in ownership, from 43% in 2019 to 64% in 2020.

Ownership of desktop computers remained the same at 41%.

In 2020 mobiles replaced laptops as the preferred device for making online purchases among the 18-24 and 35-44 demographics.

“While smartphone penetration appears to have plateaued across Europe, our reliance on these devices has not faltered, with almost a third of us now checking our phones more than 50 times a day, and usage rates even higher among younger consumers,” said Daryl Hanberry, Partner and Head of Technology, Media and Telecommunications at Deloitte.

“As mobiles begin to replace laptops as the preferred device for making online purchases – not just browsing – and especially as remote engagement becomes even more important, businesses must prioritise their mobile offerings or risk being left behind.” 

Covid-19 and working from home.

The survey found that 45% of all respondents reported that they were working from home during the Covid-19 lockdown period.

40% of those working from home reported that they found it easier than working at the office or on site while 37% found it more difficult. 23% reported no difference in difficulty.

The biggest barrier people reported was being distracted by there members of the household at 33%.

30% found the lack of face-to-face interaction with colleagues was a problem, with 28% saying they were working longer hours as a result of working from home.

25% found that not having a comfortable work space at home was a problem.

Access to technology was also a problem reported by people.


The study found:

  • 22% stated that they were used to working on more or larger monitors while in the office;
  • 17% stated that the online systems they were using were very slow from home;
  • 13% couldn’t access the files they needed;
  • a further 13% experienced difficulty in having to use technology they weren’t familiar with.

Technology’s reliability was also a problem for those surveyed.

21% found that calls or video conferences kept dropping out while 19% encountered problems with their broadband dropping out.

15% found that their computer was too slow or stopped working.

“A number of issues around access to and the reliability of technology were noted by respondents as barriers to working from home. As we look towards living with Covid-19 in the short- to medium-term, employers need to ensure that their employees’ basic technology requirements are being met, as working from home will continue to be widespread for some time to come,” said John Kehoe an Audit Partner at Deloitte.

“Over and above issues with technology, many respondents report that they do not have suitable home working environments and over a quarter found themselves working longer hours as a direct result of working from home.

“As we are now more than six months into this crisis, employers urgently need to address these issues or risk significant decreases in staff motivation and, ultimately, loyalty.”

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