Pinterest and Instagram are Strongly Associated with Smartphone Addiction

A new study shows that Pinterest and Instagram are more associated with smartphone addiction than Internet use and gaming.

smartphone addiction

A study from Baylor University on smartphone addiction found that certain activities — notably Pinterest and Instagram — “are associated significantly with cellphone addiction.” Interestingly, Internet use and gaming were not associated with addiction.

The study, published in the Journal of Behavioral Addictions, found that women college students spend 10 hours a day on their smartphones, and men spent eight hours a day on their devices. While Instagram’s user base is pretty much equal in terms of gender, women are four times more likely to use Pinterest, according to a recent BI Intelligence report.

More findings from the study:

  • Of the top activities, respondents overall reported spending the most time texting (an average of 94.6 minutes a day), followed by sending emails (48.5 minutes), checking Facebook (38.6 minutes), surfing the Internet (34.4 minutes) and listening to their iPods (26.9 minutes).
  • Men send about the same number of emails but spend less time on each. “That may suggest that they’re sending shorter, more utilitarian messages than their female counterparts,” said researcher James Roberts, Ph.D.
  • Women spend more time on their cellphones. While that finding runs somewhat contrary to the traditional view that men are more invested in technology, “women may be more inclined to use cellphones for social reasons such as texting or emails to build relationships and have deeper conversations.”
  • The men in the study, while more occupied with using their cellphones for utilitarian or entertainment purposes, “are not immune to the allure of social media,” Roberts said. They spent time visiting such social networking sites as Facebook, Instagram and Twitter. Among reasons they used Twitter were to follow sports figures, catch up on the news — “or, as one male student explained it, ‘waste time,’” Roberts said.

    Historically, women have been more likely to use social networks. However, the gender gap is closing amongst social media users.

    [H/T Science of Us]