The average Australian spends 5.5 hours per day on their phone, and out of 1,000 Australians surveyed, 46% admitted they were addicted using their smartphones, according to a study by tech site Review.
Phones have become ubiquitous, a 24/7 companion. The study found that 72% of Aussies sleep with their phone next to them and 79% say they check their phones within 10 minutes after waking up.
55% of respondents say they never leave the house without their phone, with three in four Aussies admitting they’d feel uneasy if they left it at home.
Phone addiction also has an impact on finances. The study showed 32% of Australians exceeded their data allowance due to spending so much time on their phones. Fortunately, most mobile plans in Australia now provide far more data for a lower monthly cost, so changing plans could significantly reduce excess data charges.
How to curb your smartphone addiction
Phones have become an essential, so cutting screen time completely is not a feasible solution. However, there are a few steps users can do to reduce how much time they spend on their phone and create a healthier relationship with technology.
Consider a digital detox. Spending 24 hours without technology might not seem ground-breaking, but it could be exactly what you need to mentally recharge, rediscover tech-free hobbies, and spend time with loved ones.
Set boundaries. Both iPhones and Android devices include the ability to set screen time limits and bedtimes, which can be configured to automatically silence new notifications, messages and calls after a certain time. The study recommends at least 30 minutes of screen-free time before bed.
Create a tech-free zone. Executive Director and co-founder Unplug Collaborative Kim Anenberg Cavallo suggests making a space at homes free of tech devices. She recommends to fill the space with board games, books, puzzles, crafts, and anything else that can help users unplug—even if just for a few hours.