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Combined Smartphone Data-Based Activities Far Outpace Talking, CEA Study Finds
Arlington, VA – 09/17/2013 – The combined total minutes spent on activities requiring data connectivity on smartphones now far outpaces talking on these devices, according to the latest research released today by the Consumer Electronics Association (CEA)®. The results from CEA’s newest tracking study, Smartphones: Consumer Behavioral Trends, examine trends on consumer behavior and sentiment regarding smartphones from June to August 2013.
Across different activities, smartphone owners spend an average of nearly two hours (114 minutes) using their devices each day. The top activities in terms of average time spent each day include talking (23 minutes), texting (20 minutes), using email (18 minutes), visiting websites (16 minutes) and social networking (11 minutes). Talking remains the top activity, but the combined total minutes spent on activities requiring data connectivity now far surpasses telephony use according to the CEA research.
“The degree to which consumers use their smartphones primarily as data information hubs, mostly forgoing devices’ traditional purpose, is significant,” said Shawn DuBravac, chief economist and senior director of research, CEA. “Smartphones have become the viewfinder of our digital life. How smartphone utilization evolves has incredible implications moving forward.”
Two-thirds (66 percent) of online U.S. consumers indicate they own a smartphone as of August 2013 with nearly half (45 percent) of all consumers planning to purchase one within the next 12 months, revealing very high near-term purchase intent. For consumers who do not currently own a smartphone, 61 percent expect to purchase one at some point in the future.
 “With growing ownership rates, it should be expected that the beginning signs of market saturation may appear within the next couple of years,” said Kevin Tillmann, senior research analyst, market research, CEA. “Yet, the near-term outlook for consumer purchase and upgrade intent remains bright for these devices, a positive sign that the smartphone market will continue to grow with new owners through 2014.”
To further understand which smartphone features consumers discuss, CEA monitored online social media conversations. The top three smartphone features, based on the number of discussions in August 2013, were body color, battery and design.
“Online consumer social media conversations indicate manufacturers are addressing the features that consumers are most passionate about discussing based on recent smartphone model announcements,” said Tillmann.
Smartphone owners use a wide variety of apps on their devices. Three-fourths (73 percent) of smartphone owners indicate they use weather apps, making them the most popular type of application used with smartphones. Additionally, 60 percent use social networking apps, followed by games (57 percent), photo and video (55 percent) and navigation (55 percent).
In terms of mobile purchases, more than half of smartphone owners (52 percent) have used their devices to shop online. A plurality of smartphone shoppers (35 percent) prefer the mobile website experience when online shopping compared to the app (32 percent) or the full website (32 percent).
Smartphones: Consumer Behavioral Trends was designed and formulated by CEA Market Research, the most comprehensive source of sales data, forecasts, consumer research and historical trends for the consumer electronics industry. Please cite any information to the Consumer Electronics Association (CEA). The complete study is available free to CEA member companies at Non-members may purchase the study for $499 at the CEA store. Reports from this tracking study will be released twice a year. The next report will be released in March 2014.
About the Consumer Technology Assocation

The Consumer Electronics Association (CEA) is the technology trade association representing the $203 billion U.S. consumer electronics industry. More than 2,000 companies enjoy the benefits of CEA membership, including legislative advocacy, market research, technical training and education, industry promotion, standards development and the fostering of business and strategic relationships. CEA also owns and produces the International CES – The Global Stage for Innovation. All profits from CES are reinvested into CEA’s industry services. Find CEA online at, and through social media.

Press Contacts:

Jeffery Joseph

Danielle Cassagnol

Categories:  CEA General, Wireless, Market Research  — Tags:  smartphone

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