December 31, 2020
TCP : ADVERTORIAL
Smartphones are part of our daily lives. Maybe more than we would like, a recent study in India shows. Yet, they are increasingly the answer to work issues, entertainment needs and even family connections.
Smartphones the Center of Our Daily Routine
In an unusual 2020, we have become almost inseparable with our mobile devices. A fresh survey conducted by Vivo India – one of the leading smartphone producers in the country – reveals what we largely knew and expected, and yet probably not in the magnitude that it turns out. The impact of the pandemic both nationally and globally cannot be denied. Industry experts describe the annual increase in smartphone use as “dramatic”, practically bordering on addiction.
Considering all the series of limitations the active population has seen over the past 9-10 months, both urban and rural users have had to adapt their daily lives and rely more on a mobile connection to reality. Physical distancing has affected work environments, daily routines and human relationships.
While smartphones are often “blamed” for confining our experience to a screen, many pragmatic aspects show that they do not represent the limitations but an opportunity for a more active personal involvement in what’s out there. Put simply, the tech-savvy Indians have quickly learned to adapt and make the best out of the situation.
Social and Entertainment Features Lighten up the Mood
On the positive side, the series of lockdowns and the “new normal” professional setup – working from home – have resulted in more time being spent with the family. Albeit in undertone, this has been spoken of as a blessing in disguise by many busy citizens.
Naturally, this goes hand in hand with an increase in the average time spent on our smartphones. And while the past year has had its negative effects on the economy, the average Indian has seen their wellbeing improve over the past few years, more often than not. The accessibility of mobile devices, the cheaper internet data packages and the many useful applications out there did the rest.
In the end, nobody was willing to be in this situation a year ago. But at least we were ready for it, with some due considerations and the necessary time to make peace with what is hopefully behind us. Many desi users switched successfully to working office work from their homes. Others use their smartphones to watch videos, play Teen Patti online or reach out to family or friends far away.
Over-the-Top (OTT) entertainment options certainly made this period easier, as Netflix and Amazon increase their presence among Indians, and the country is the number one global user market of tech giants such as Facebook and WhatsApp.
A Year Dedicated to Mobile Tasks
Positive aspects are not limited to connectivity only. While Indians had to learn to stay home more, this had its absolutely positive impact on urban pollution, traffic congestion and the time left for one’s personal needs.
With an almost 40% increase in smartphone use compared to 2019, we dedicate an average of 7 hours per day to our mobiles, including work (from 4.5 hours last year, going mostly towards entertainment only). Calling has also increased by 63%, OTT by 59%, the time on social media by 55% and gaming about 45%.