Cell Phone Addiction: 15 Numbers That Show The Ridiculous Obsession Americans Have With Their Phones

Share on FacebookTweet about this on TwitterPin on PinterestShare on Google+Share on LinkedInShare on StumbleUponEmail this to someone

Cell Phone Addiction - Public DomainHave you ever had a family gathering, a social function or a business meeting ruined by someone that was obsessed with checking their cell phone?  I see this wherever I go, and it is one of the reasons why I don’t like to leave the house much.  No matter who is around and no matter how important what they are supposed to be doing may be, many Americans feel a deep, dark compulsion to constantly check their smartphones.  As you will see below, the average user checks his or her phone 35 times a day, but of course there are some people that are well into the triple digits.  Cell phone addiction is very real, and that is why there are actually rehab programs for this sort of thing.  Unfortunately, we simply can’t put the entire country into rehab, and this problem just keeps getting worse with each passing year.


Below, I want to share with you 15 numbers that show how ridiculous our obsession with our smartphones has become.  I think that you will agree with me that our addiction to cell phones has gotten way out of control…

1. The average smartphone user checks his or her phone 35 times a day.

2. Common Sense media just released a new survey that found that 50 percent of American teens admit that they “feel addicted” to their smartphones.

3. Close to 70 percent of parents and teens say that they have argued about smartphone usage.

4. 77 percent of parents say that “their teenagers were sometimes distracted by their phones or tablets during time spent together with family”.

5. Even though it is illegal in almost every state, 56 percent of parents confess that they check their mobile devices while driving.

6. 51 percent of teens admit that they have seen their parents check their smartphones while driving.

7. A different survey found that 75 percent of all smartphone users admit that they have texted while driving at least once.

8. 70 percent of smartphone users check their phones “within an hour of getting up”.

9. 56 percent of smartphone users check their phones “within an hour of going to sleep”.

10. 61 percent of smartphone users admit that “they regularly sleep with their cell or smartphone turned on under their pillow or next to their bed”.

11. 48 percent of smartphone users check their devices over the weekend.

12. 51 percent of smartphone users check their devices continuously during their vacations.

13. 44 percent of smartphone users admit that they would experience “a great deal of anxiety” if the phone went missing and they were unable to replace it for a week.

14. One survey discovered that the average cell phone user is on the device for 3 hours and 8 minutes a day.

15. A different survey found that the average cell phone user actually spends 3.6 hours a day using it.

No matter how you break these numbers down, they paint a very clear picture of a society that is absolutely addicted to these devices.

Unfortunately, this is not something that a lot of us take very seriously.  For example, just consider the following excerpt from a CNN article.  The author openly acknowledges the obsession that she has with her smartphone, but she is obviously not too concerned about it…

If you asked me whether I’m addicted to my smartphone or whether I overuse it, I would say absolutely not. I pride myself on not keeping my devices (I have two of them!) in my bedroom while I sleep, and keeping them out of reach on the kitchen counter when I’m home with my kids. But, every time I walk into the kitchen, I find myself checking my email and Twitter feed.

There’s almost a gravitational pull toward my BlackBerry and iPhone even when I know the chance that there is anything I need to see at that moment is next to zero. I feel that same pull the minute I wake up and make checking my devices one of the first things I do once I get out of bed.

To me, our society was so much better off when all we had were rotary phones that were physically tied to the wall.  In this day and age, we have a generation of people that have been trained to think that it is okay to pull out their mobile devices and stare into them like zombies wherever they are.  And especially among our young people there are many that start to get physically uncomfortable if they have to talk to you for more than five minutes without checking their phones.

Of course this is just another indication of how “me-centered” our society has become.  Our phones have literally become extensions of ourselves, and we love to immerse ourselves in our own little worlds.

There is something deeply narcissistic about our love affair with these smartphones.  Yes, I understand that millions of us have to use them for work, and in many ways they do make our lives much more convenient.

But on the other hand they are greatly contributing to the sense of loneliness and isolation that so many Americans are feeling these days.

Instead of having deep, meaningful relationships with our phones, perhaps we should try having deep, meaningful relationships with one another.

After all, previous generations of Americans seemed to have done just fine without checking their phones every five minutes.

*About the author: Michael Snyder is the founder and publisher of End Of The American Dream. Michael’s controversial new book about Bible prophecy entitled “The Rapture Verdict” is available in paperback and for the Kindle on Amazon.com.*

  • Daddyotis

    Our technology will be our downfall

    • uleaveuswithoutoptions

      Yup, our dependence on technology and gadgets is very frightening.
      Lots of helpless, clueless people will be panicking when the SHTF.

  • kfilly

    I agree that this can be an addiction. However, I see some statistics as being twisted. I am not turning my phone off at night, and I do keep it by my bed. I do this because I do not have a landline and like to be able to call 911 in the event of an emergency. I also check my phone when it goes off as I work as a career firefighter for a smaller department (could get called back for a fire or other emergency). Despite this, I will keep my phone off if I am on a vacation or doing something important.

    • Michael Malachi

      First it was the home computer and home phone, then cell phone, then smart phone/computer. What is happening? The technology is getting closer to you and soon it will become part of you. For those of us who have their eyes open – we can see what is next – The implantable device that will connect you (your brain) to the internet. The science is there and it is all up to marketing at this point.
      This device will allow you to send thoughtmail and connect with anyone else who has the same technology instantly – (without typing). There will be many other benefits to it including health monitoring, automobile/travel applications, and an instant google search when you want to know something. Just think about it, when this is finally implemented it will be nearly impossible to live in the world without it.
      The name of this technology is called the MARK OF THE BEAST and there is many downfalls that will not be advertised. Basically – in accepting this technology you will be giving up your soul and becoming a part of the global network. There will be many issues that will cause tremendous problems but those with the technology will not complain – they will actually be controlled in some degree by those running the system.
      This all sounds crazy – and there is a lot more to it than can be said in this small blog – but I can assure you that it is coming and very soon.
      WARNING – DON’T ACCEPT THIS TECHNOLOGY. It will be sold as the solution to the world’s problems but will enslave the masses and be the end of freedom, privacy and well everything that makes you you.

      • kfilly

        I won’t accept the mark of the beast. I am aware as to what is transpiring. There will come a point when I will have to leave all of my possessions behind as a result.

        • michael malachi

          Matthew 6:19-20
          Lay not up for you treasure upon earth where moth and rust corrupt and thieves steal. But lay up for yourselves treasure in heaven where it can not be corrupted or stolen.
          Where your treasure is, your heart will be also.

        • Jacynthia Read

          Many of us will do the same. As I get older things mean less and less. They only thing that matters is my faith in God and my family. The rest are just things to be used for a purpose and then discarded. Good luck.

      • Robert

        With respect, I assume you are using the internet technology to read Mr. Snyder’s blog and to make comments. So, when are you going to abandon the system? Or, are your comments tongue in cheek?

        • michael malachi

          the internet has many uses and also can be used for many evil purposes. But when the internet and computer technology is being put inside of humans – that is where I draw the line and that is where we must not comply.

          • Robert

            This is where Bible interpretation becomes dicey in modern times. The Bible says “mark”. If you take the scriptures literally then mark is a mark and not some piece of technology that can be hacked or taken out. I should think it might be more of an indelible tattoo. An embedded device is vulnerable to an EMP event including a Carrington type event. A tattoo is not vulnerable to that sort of damage. Interesting times.

          • michael malachi

            if you want to understand scripture then you need to have given your life to Christ in full and that means live righteously. Then with much prayer and study the Holy Spirit will give you true. The word of God is foolishness to an unbeliever.
            Please look at the scriptures in full. No one will buy or sell without the mark. It must be a technology that will work with the cashless system. The technology exists today that can connect your brain to the internet, can put all of your medical records, financials, health monitoring devices, and much much more – all into a chip that is implantable. Don’t you wonder why the chip implants that are being done today (experimental) are being implanted in the hand and a few are in the forehead.

          • Robert

            It may be but like many “believers” you are formulating your own hypothesis and opinion and that is all it is. Speculations are fine but they do not supplant scripture.

          • Jacynthia Read

            Are you a Christian?

          • Robert

            And why do you ask? U first.

          • Jacynthia Read

            Yes, I am a Christian. Jesus Christ, Yeshua ben David, is my Lord and Savior. As to why I ask, I’m asking because I would like to know.

          • Robert

            Yes. I am. For over 50 years now. I have watched one modern prophet after another proclaim “things” based on some current trend or event; sell some books, raise hopes and then disappear from the scene. I have seen cults rise up and TV charlatans fleece the sheep with their charisma. I have seen much falling away. I observe tolerance of the intolerable and intolerance going the other way. I see egregious misuse of scripture and theologies constructed from a verse or two totally out of context and ignoring the whole of scripture. Interesting times.

          • michael Malachi

            If you were truly saved by the Grace offered by believing in Jesus Christ as the son of God and his death on the cross for the payment of our sins and his resurrection – then you would recognize your brothers and sisters in Christ. Obviously, many whom you trusted in in the past have hurt you and made you doubt your faith because of their corruption.
            Religion can only take a person so far, beyond that a person must have that personal relationship with Jesus Christ by spending time in prayer and reading the Word of God, then living like Christ to the best of their ability.
            Anything that I have written can be looked at with discernment that the Holy Spirit offers when he resides in us.
            I offered no timeline but offered encouragement to my fellow believers – to keep faith, live for the heavenly realm and refuse the mark of the beast.
            I suggest that you focus on prayer and reading the Bible and forget all that which is said by others. Refocus your life into Christ and find truth there.
            God Bless you in your search.

          • Robert

            You draw a lot of conclusions based on almost no information. It seems you speculate a lot.

          • Jacynthia Read

            What I see is a new Gospel where people are entertained in church rather than taught the Bible. It’s so bad that I wonder how this generation even gets saved, for how can one be saved if they never hear the word, and how can they hear the word if it is never preached. There is no conviction of sin. There is no repentance. There is no healing of the spirit that produces a new life in Christ. People are being told a lie and given a false sense of security. However, one can know the truth if one reads the Bible for him or herself and asks God for understanding, but then one would not be comfortable in most of these mega churches.

            We are indeed getting closer to that day of His coming because things are happening that have been foretold, but you must remember we have been living in the last days for nearly 2000 years.

            Good luck in your walk with Christ and pray for guidance as we walk the straight and narrow path that leads to salvation.

          • Robert

            I agree with you. It pays to remember who the “Prince” of this world is and his ability to deceive even the elect if you do not work hard on discernment. Even this technology stuff and world calamities can be distracting from the true gospel. I see such hateful stuff made by supposed Christians in some of these comments. It is sad. All the best to you in the days ahead.

          • michael malachi

            Are you morman or 7th day Adventist? they tend to have a different understanding of scripture, putting more faith in their “prophet” than Jesus Christ. Maybe you are agnostic. that would explain things.
            As for me, what I have to say should never contradict scripture and if it does then let me know where/if there is a problem. – if you don’t agree then please give your opinion.
            Apparently you don’t consider yourself a believer – from your last post – and if not then it really wouldn’t matter to you if it added up to scripture or not. You wouldn’t know anyway.
            I am only trying to help those who would listen.
            By the way, when the chip is available don’t get it or you will be damned.

        • uleaveuswithoutoptions

          Sadly, the only way to get news that contradicts the mainstream media’s narrative, is on the Internet.
          Obama’s Internet “Kill Switch” (and the FCC) will eventually put an end to this however, when a “National Emergency” is declared.
          Until that day happens, the Internet is the best and most convenient source for real news.

      • Jacynthia Read

        You are correct. I’m in the Silicon Valley and Google is working on this latest technology right now. It is the next step in human evolution, or so they believe. It will alter your DNA so that you will be trans-human, or like the comic books, a super human. That is how it is being marketed in the tech world. SciFy will soon be reality. For most they will think it is wonderful. For some they will think it is a nightmare.

  • Robert

    I like my smart phone. It has a number of uses. I am disinterested in what someone else’s opinion is about how much I use it. It defeats boredom. I also enjoy books and reading. It is pleasant to stay abreast of news and to keep in touch with friends etc. I do think they have no place in a classroom but not my decision. I think connectivity is wonderful and useful. There is always a dark side to any technology. Stirrups enabled cavalry to be more deadly. Cars are huge killers but would you prefer walking everywhere or depending on an animal for transport. Prefer outhouses to flush toilets? You cannot stop stupid behaviors.

    • Ray S.

      I think that with most everything, anything can become an addiction. Back in the 70s and 80s it was television. In the 90s it became video gaming. Today it’s the cell phone. I think it’s worse than tv and gaming because it offers all of those things in one device and more. Another concern that many don’t ever mention is the real risk of getting cancer or brain tumors through SAR levels released by cell phones. Smart phones have a much higher SAR rating than the earlier cell phones did. The answer just like with everything else is that moderation/moderate use is key.

      • Robert

        True enough with moderation. However, smart phones, computers, internet has prevented a lot of elderly from being lonely and isolated. I am retired and enjoy learning many new things online. It is interesting to keep up with this blog on my smartphone. There are a lot worse things to get rid of than phone technology. I would start with television.

  • Jim Davis

    So should I be worried about earthquakes or smart phones?

    • Jacynthia Read


  • MaxRockatansky33

    I know a few persons which are literally addicted to their smartphones and Facebook. Walking on the street and you can say that this have become an epidemic. Smarthphone zombies.

    • theharvestor

      Yup…hope they didn’t get run a by a truck driver on his phone, while they are mind numb on thiers!

  • mleblanc138

    I like to play a game on my phone called Ingress which is essentially GPS style capture the flag using real world objects and played worldwide. The company that made that game is working on making Pokemon Go which will be the same thing but with catching Pokemon instead. There will probably be a rise of phone thefts and such as players unknowingly walk through sketchy areas glued to their phone.

  • Guest

    I have never owned a cell phone, a smartphone or any other kind of mobile device.

  • James Dohnalek

    Cell phone use is coming to an abrupt end, 100%, for everyone. Satellites will be destroyed soon to come. Then, what will people do?
    Write letters?

  • DJohn1

    Actually until this year I refused to carry one.
    I think the EMF Radiation from a cell phone can kill brain cells and bring on the onset of other problems.
    What changed is my wife went into cardiac arrest on Christmas night and I suddenly find myself in need to be able to keep in touch just in case an emergency arises. So at 73 I find myself needing to be able to use one.
    I am fairly good with electronic gadgets. But the cell phone has had a little bit of a learning curve and this is a simple one. Nothing really fancy.
    My boys programmed the telephone numbers in.
    They are not boys anymore of course. They are in their 30s and 40s.
    Basically they got their heads together and gave me a phone.
    They then gave me a 2 minute course in how to use it.
    My wife is out of the hospital and will be weak the rest of her life. She has about 15% of her heart left. I got her to the Emergency Room just in time to save her life.
    I give her one to two years max. But we did put her on every prayer list we could think of and she is doing well considering her condition.
    With the Good Lord willing she may live longer still. The longest lived with this condition was 5 years. I’ll take it if our God is willing to give it.
    I am able to use almost any computer system including PCs, MACs, and Linux. These little phones remind me a lot of gadgets we have had in the past.
    If I had a concern other than the EMF it would be the addiction to games our younger generation appear to have.
    This is not normal. It basically is a form of brain washing.
    It is almost hypnotic in its control of the gamer.
    Now that is scary. Because it is only a matter of time before someone includes post-hypnotic suggestions in one of the games.
    Then all Hell will break loose.

    • Sorry to hear that, brother. Enjoy your time with her while you can.

    • uleaveuswithoutoptions

      Take care and God bless DJohn1. You and your dear wife are in our prayers.

  • Mondobeyondo

    I’m always amazed at how mankind was able to survive until smartphones were introduced some 20-odd years ago. It must have been horrific. Doing research using actual paper books in a brick library building. Driving in a car to a store to do shopping. Thank goodness for Wikipedia, Google and Amazon. Life just wouldn’t be the same if they weren’t around.

    (tongue in cheek, of course)

  • Isaac

    I know that feeling with smartphone craze. People around me just constantly checking their phones or just staring at their phones is irritating especially when you’re having a conversation with them. This is the age of loneliness and isolation. Being alone or lonely is not necessarily a bad thing as some people end up being in worse shape with marriage, divorce, or bad friends. Sometimes being isolated is not necessarily a bad thing. There was a story in the news about a middle-age woman in Alaska living by herself and she seems to be enjoying life. Having said that being in total isolation for an extended period of time is bound to have a negative impact.

  • Ray S.

    Over the past few years I deleted all my social media accounts, and made it a habit to stop texting or checking my phone throughout the day and now only do so before I get to work and after. I did it and you can do it too and take control of your life. You won’t realize what a time-waster it is until you start to restrict yourself. Freedom from cell phone technology is a wonderful thing! I feel like my mind is less cluttered and I can actually think without disruption.

  • Damian

    Most of the users are women. Look for yourself, seven out of ten women on the street are on the phone. I find it very disturbing. I see them walking down the street with the phone in their right hand, and walking in a kind of mincing fashion as if on a catwalk. I sometimes think their hand is going to become paralyzed with the permanent contours of a phone. I have come to the conclusion that only shallow and actually stupid people are more inclined to cell phone use.

  • Kim

    I dont see what the big deal is. I have one smart phone. I don’t own a television or a radio. I do own a really cool blue tooth wireless Bose speaker that I play my music on.

    I use my phone for listening to music, watching movies and some tv shows (I like House of Cards and The Walking Dead), I use my phone to do most of my banking as well as shopping. I use it for reminders and alarms. I use my smart phone to communicate with my kids and cousins, sister and mother and uncles. We text and call, take and send photos of loved ones to each other, take and send photos of hazardous areas to avoid driving in the city, utilize video recording for those crazy moments–. Sometimes my family and I have group texts that require participation and immediate responses. It’s an excellent way to get everyone on the same page regarding family plans.

    I use my phone to book my airline tickets as I travel out of the country about four times a year.

    And yes I play games on my phone (I like Subway Surfer)

    I belong to forums like this one, where I get a portion of the daily economic news, and from others like it. I find that my phone is very useful to me, it does a lot of tasks for me, for example i used my phone to navigate through central Bangkok last Feb when j was there. I used it to find addresses and points of interest and places to eat. And I used it to navigate through Germany and France last November for the same purpose.

    I may be dependent upon my smart phone in some ways by I am not addicted to it. I need my phone and I never leave my home without it. But if I do find myself without it for some reason I just adjust and make do. But I always prefer to have my phone with me.

  • uleaveuswithoutoptions

    My nieces looked physically ill when I told them that when I was young, there were no cell phones, voicemail, answering machines, text messages, Facebook, Twitter or the Internet.
    They said, “But you could miss a call”, which to them was the worst thing that could befall a human being.
    My last visit to the eye doctor was interesting. I counted the number of people in the waiting room, 28, and 26 of those people were on their smart phones.

    We all willingly gave up our anonymity and privacy for a few shiny toys that literally enslaved the majority of us.

  • ann3archuleta

    Invaluable ideas . I am thankful for the details – Does anyone know if my assistant can obtain a blank a form form to type on ?