Do You Sleep with Your Cell Phone? Most Americans Do


Two-thirds of American adults have slept with their cell phones on or right next to their beds. The number rises to over 90% among people ages 18 to 29. Those are some of the conclusions from the huge Pew Internet & American Life Project called "Cellphones and American Adults."

The study also found significant increases in texting and the overall amount of time that Americans spend talking on their cell phones. As might be expected, "cell phone-centric" activity is more prevalent among the young than it is among the middle-aged and older who have mobile phones.

The number of Americans who own a BlackBerry (RIMM), iPhone (AAPL) or other cellular device is up to 82%. That should not be surprising. The combined subscriber bases of Sprint-Nextel (S), Verizon Wireless, and AT&T (T) are now 230 million. Cell phone use may be reaching a saturation point in America.

Men Are Heavier Users

The Pew research shows that adults who use texting receive a median of 10 texts a day. The number rises to 50 a day for teenagers. Five percent of adult texters send 200 texts per day. Heavy texters, those who send and receive more than 50 a day, are also heavier users of voice features on their phones.

Other results show that the average phone user makes five calls a day. Men are slightly more likely to make calls than are women.

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It is perhaps not unexpected that 91% of Americans say their cell phones make them feel safer. The devices connect them with the world. Eighty-eight percent say their phones help them stay in touch with family and friends. There may not be much that's extraordinary in the 42-page report, especially to those of us who watch others text and talk on their phones all day -- except perhaps that most of those people sleep with their phones, too.

The report is based on the findings of a daily tracking survey on Americans' use of the Internet and data from phone interviews conducted by Princeton Survey Research Associates International between April 29 and May 30, 2010, among a sample of 2,252 adults, age 18 and older.