London: A survey into the social impact that mobile phones are having on today’s society has identified a deep-routed emotional bond with our handheld devices, and that mobile phones are now vital in the social management of our lives.
Almost a third of respondents (31 per cent) confirmed they would feel ‘completely lost’ and ‘isolated’ if they mislaid their mobile phone, with a further 25 per cent stating it would have a major impact on their social life and would make them feel out of touch or cut off from friends and family.
The survey, which was undertaken by iome, an events-based digital lifestyle services company, found that only 12 per cent of people would actually find losing their mobile a positive experience, claiming they would ‘feel free’, be less distracted and ‘lead a richer life’.
One in 80 people have admitted to using their mobile internet access to enjoy their vices, including adult content and gambling. The survey also found that the way in which we interact socially has dramatically changed with 12 per cent of people reporting to have been heartlessly dumped via text message.
Over two thirds of respondents are now frequently using their mobile devices to access the web, and of those 81% are favouring to obtain directions or maps, and seven out of ten use it to access social media sites to connect with friends and family, such as Facebook, Twitter or MySpace.
Phil Eames, CEO, iome said: “The survey demonstrates that many people now rely on their mobile devices to connect and interact with friends and contacts – whether via text, calling or even via mobile internet. The way in which people communicate with one another has evolved over the years and the reliance we have on these devices is obvious. It is now seen as a multi-function device that enables conversation, social interaction and keeping up to speed with where your friends are and what they are doing, at any time.”
When asked what feature people would like to see added to mobiles, it ranged from having integrated satellite navigation or the option to watch live TV broadcasts, through to the more unusual requests for teleportation, incorporating an electric shaver for ‘grooming on the go’ and an ever lasting battery so the need to recharge was no more.
The strangest fact resulting from the survey found that over one fifth of people have, at one time, dropped their mobile phones down a toilet!