Brits now spend more time using technology than sleeping

In case you needed any more proof, the digital age really is upon us.

by Rachel Savage
Last Updated: 07 Aug 2014

Britain is a nation that almost never switches off. We now spend more than half our waking hours attached to or in earshot of technology, be it a smartphone, tablet, computer, TV or radio. And it’s longer than we spend sleeping, according to regulator Ofcom.

The average UK adult spends 8 hours 41 minutes using devices, compared to 8 hours 21 minutes sleeping. When multi-tasking on different ones is added together, we spend more than 11 hours using tech, two hours more than when Ofcom last did similar research in 2010.

Older forms of media aren’t dying out just yet, though. The average Brit still watches almost four hours of TV a day, down nine minutes from 2012 and still more than the time spent with any other media form. Meanwhile more than 90% listened to the radio last year. ‘It's still early in the digital revolution,’ Enders Analysis researcher Ian Maude told the BBC.

Young people are, unsurprisingly, leading the charge away from those: 6-7 year olds are more digitally savvy than 45-49 year olds, according to the research. 16-24 year olds spend the most time using technology (more than than nine hours) and are more into music streaming than MP3s or CDs.

Meanwhile, the days of teens hogging the house phone are over - 12-15 year olds spend just 3% of their time making voice calls, compared to 94% texting or on social networks. At least concerned parents can call one another now anyway.

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