Have Tablets Eroded the Popularity of Toilet Smartphone Use?

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Here at Techland, we like to ask the hard questions. So when a Google survey found that 39 percent of smartphone users whip out their handsets while on the toilet, we decided to dig deeper. To push harder. To find out whether the rise of tablets has helped put the skids on toilet smartphone use. After all, why play around with that dinky screen when you’ve got a magazine-sized display to pass the time?

From what I can tell, there is no scientific data to answer that question. And that’s probably for the best. But here’s what other studies have told us in the past:

  • Last October, a survey from Mobiles Please found that 82 percent of smartphone users regularly bring their handsets to the toilet. And these people stay on the can for 3.5 minutes longer than smartphone users who abstain.
  • In March, a CareerBuilder survey of people who work on the road found that 57 percent check their phones in the bathroom. By comparison, only 50 percent check their phones in bed.

To recap: 82 percent in October, 57 percent in March, 39 percent in April. Therefore, using completely unscientific methods that you should never repeat to anyone, ever, we can deduce that as tablet sales increase, smartphone toilet use decreases. Correlation doesn’t imply causation, but whatever. I’ve clearly played fast and loose with the statistics to pursue some potty humor, and we’ve learned nothing.

If you actually want to know how people are using their smartphones these days, just watch this video:

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