Most New Zealanders hooked to smartphones

Wellington, Jan 19 (IANS) A whopping 3.1 million New Zealanders are spending an equivalent of two working days a week glued to a screen, shows a study.

Whether it is on laptop, tablet or smartphone, Kiwis spend 16 hours online every week, the report said.

With 70 percent of New Zealanders owning a mobile device, the online population seems to prefer accessing their content on a smartphone (65 percent), rather than on a tablet (27 percent), reported.

Two in five tech-savvy kiwis use at least three devices on a weekly basis, while about 73 percent use two, the findings showed.

“Smartphones had become a ‘dominant player’ in providing brands with a tool to deliver online content by targeting audiences at highly intentional times,” said Tony Boyte, Research Director at Nielsen in New Zealand.

Almost nine in 10 New Zealanders use social media — of them, three quarters use Facebook on a monthly basis, the report revealed.

Desktop and laptops were still the most dominant device used for this activity, however mobile was increasingly prevalent, Boyte noted.

The report also found that more than three quarters of New Zealanders watch TV and use a separate device to access the internet at the same time — more than one in three do so on a daily basis.

Matt Weldon-Smith from Lower Hutt, a city in the North Island of New Zealand said he spends up to four hours every night staring at a screen.

“I go home after work and it’s quite common for me to have the TV on and I’ll be playing a game on my iPad or I’ll be on Twitter — I’m always on Twitter,” he said.

Sometimes the 34-year-old had to force himself to put down his devices to make sure he paid attention to the TV programme he was watching, Weldon-Smith said.

New Zealanders were primarily using their smartphones to interact with social media, access weather information and obtain latest news updates, Boyte said.

And tablets were predominantly used to access news content, social media sites and watch online video content, he added.

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