A decade of digital dependency

By Zoe Stroud

OFcom have released a new study highlighting how communications services in the UK are changing.

The study found most people now say they need and expect a constant internet connection, wherever they go. Two-thirds of adults (64%) say the internet is an essential part of their life. One in five adults (19%) say they spend more than 40 hours a week online, an increase from 5% just over ten years ago. For the first time this year, women spend more time online than men.

People in the UK now check their smartphones, on average, every 12 minutes of the waking day. Two in five adults (40%) first look at their phone within five minutes of waking up, climbing to 65% of those aged under 35. Similarly, 37% of adults check their phones five minutes before lights out, again rising to 60% of under-35s.
With internet access improving all the time it has transformed how we interact with each other. Two-fifths of people (41%) say being online enables them to work more flexibly, and three quarters (74%) say it keeps them close to friends and family.

How Do you feel without the Internet?

A Decade of Change in digital communications

The complete study and its findings can be found at OFcom