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82+ Worrying Technology Addiction Statistics (2022)

Last updated: 2 weeks ago
12 min read

Roughly 33.3% of tech users worldwide might be at least mildly addicted to technology, with 38% of people in the US and EU being heavily dependent on it.

Get a closer look at:

  • How many people are addicted to technology as a whole
  • How many adults and teens are addicted to the internet, cell phones, social media, and gaming
  • How these addictions affect people’s lives

Did you know that most technology addicts are teenagers who come from high-income households? More on that later.

Technology Addiction Statistics

Worrying Technology Addiction Statistics (Top Picks)

  • Roughly 1.65 billion people could suffer from at least a mild technology addiction, with 44% of teens struggling to take a tech break
  • The average American spends more than 7 hours per day in front of a screen, with 22% being in front of it almost constantly
  • An estimated 6% of the world population is addicted to the internet, with around 1/4 of teens showing symptoms of addiction and males being slightly more susceptive to being addicted
  • More than 399 million people are addicted to smartphones, with an average American spending almost 3 hours per day on a phone
  • Over 14 million teens in the US could be suffering from at least mild social media addiction, with at least 5% of young people in the EU having the same problem
  • Almost 40% of adult social media users express at least minimal symptoms of depression, with 8.8% having severe symptoms
  • Estimated 105.6 million gamers are addicted to video games

General Technology Addiction Statistics

How many people suffer from a tech addiction?

One in three (or roughly 33.3%) tech users find it difficult to take a tech break.

1 in 3 tech users struggle to take a tech break

The data is based on an online survey completed by respondents from 17 different countries.

(GFK)

Based on internet user numbers (4.95 billion people), we can estimate that around 1.65 billion people could be at least mildly addicted to tech.

(Datareportal 3)

Studies suggest that around 38% of Americans and Europeans suffer from technology dependence.

(Newport Academy)

How many teenagers suffer from a tech addiction?

44% of 15-to-19-year-olds admit it is difficult to take a tech break, even when they know they should take it.

Percentage of people struggling to take a tech break

Similarly, 41% of people in their twenties say they struggle to take a tech break.

However, the older the age group, the less they struggle to take a tech break.

Age groupPercentage of those
struggling to take
a tech break
15-1944%
20-2941%
30-3938%
40-4929%
50-5923%
60+15%
(Consumer Affairs)

How many hours per day do Americans spend in front of a screen?

An average American spends around 7 hours and 4 minutes daily in front of the screen.

(Datareportal)

Half of Americans spend at least half of their day in front of the screen.

22% of Americans spend almost the whole day in front of a screen.

Time spent in
front of a screen
Percentage of
Americans
Almost the
entire day
22%
More than half
of the day
28%
Less than half
of the day
30%
A little time17%
No time or
they don’t know
5%
(Statista)

How is technology addiction impacting people’s lives?

Technology addiction can greatly impact society, family relationships, kindness, physical and mental health, and finances.

(ResearchGate)

One study suggests that the overuse of technology can damage our brains, hurting the parts responsible for:

  • Emotional processing
  • Decision-making
  • Attention

The span of the latter has shortened from 12 minutes to 5 minutes.

The study also links it to increased anxiety, depression, and suicidal thoughts.

(Economic Times)

Technology addiction demographics

People with the highest income have more difficulties taking a tech break than those with lower income.

More accurately, 39% of people living in a high-income household had struggled, compared to 30% from low-income households.

Percentage of people in
high-income households
struggling to take a tech break
Percentage of people in
low-income households
struggling to take a tech break
39%30%
(Consumer Affairs)

Teenagers in the 13-17 age group are at the highest risk of having internet addiction, with a 73% prevalence.

Risk of having internet addiction

Here’s a breakdown of risk of internet addiction by age groups:

Age groupRisk percentage of
having internet addiction
13-1773%
18-2471%
25-3459%
35-4454%
45-5440%
55-6439%
64+44%
(CompareCamp)

How many people feel addicted to technology?

Roughly 50% of teenagers feel they’re addicted to their smartphones.

(Newport Academy)

Internet Addiction Statistics

How many people are addicted to the internet?

Around 6% of the world’s population was addicted to the internet in 2014.

That means that out of 7.262 billion people in 2014, more than 435 million were addicted to the internet.

(Liebertpub)

However, a more recent study in 2017 speculated that roughly 210 million people worldwide suffer from social media and internet addiction.

(ScienceDirect)

How many teenagers suffer from internet addiction?

Around 25% of teenagers have symptoms of internet addiction.

More than 25% of teens have symptoms of internet addiction

(IOP)

A Greek study on adolescent students showed that 5.9% expressed internet addiction with more than 5 different symptoms.

12.9% of students had between 3-4 symptoms and were at high risk of developing an addiction.

Up to 52.1% of them already had between 0 to 2 symptoms.

Number of internet
addiction symptoms
Percentage of adolescent
students showing those symptoms
More than 55.9%
3-412.9%
0-252.1%
(ResearchGate 2)

One Malaysian study showed a 29% prevalence of internet addiction among adolescent students.

The study involved 27,497 students, with a Malay Version of the Internet Addiction Test as the criteria for measuring internet addiction.

(NIH)

How many hours do Americans spend online?

Americans spend 7 hours and 5 minutes using the internet every day.

Average online US screen time

Here’s a table of daily time spent online by an average person in the US:

YearAvg. daily time spent
online by Americans
20227 hours 5 minutes
20217 hours 11 minutes
20206 hours 42 minutes
20196 hours 31 minutes
20186 hours 30 minutes
(Datareportal 2)

85% of Americans go online every day.

Of those, 48% go online only several times a day, whereas 31% are online almost constantly. 6% go online about once a day.

On the other hand, 4% go online several times a week, with another 4% being online even less often. Apparently, the remaining 7% never go online.

How often are
Americans online
Percentage
of Americans
Almost all the time31%
Several times a DAY48%
Once a day6%
Several times a WEEK4%
Once a week or less4%
Never7%
(Pew Research)

What are the effects of internet addiction?

Severe internet addiction can have harmful effects on:

  • Cognitive development: diminished ability to read, think analytically, remember things, process information, and remain focused.
  • How you process information (information overload): lack of attention and control, worse decision-making and job satisfaction, techno-stressed by the amount of info, making errors in selecting info
  • Difficulties in distinguishing between what’s public and what’s private
  • Replacing or degrading real-life relationships and communities for online alternatives

(EU Parliament)

Internet addiction demographics

Males are slightly more addicted to the internet, with 28.16%, compared to females, at 24.79%.

The study was conducted in 2020 on Nigerian students.

(ResearchGate 3)

Out of 31% of Americans that are almost constantly online, most (48%) come from the 18-29 age group.

Age groupPercentage of those who
are almost constantly online
18-2948%
30-4942%
50-6422%
65+8%
(Pew Research)

Furthermore, 42% of them are college graduates.

Level of education among those
who are almost constantly online
Percentage of Americans
College degree42%
Some college completed29%
High school or less23%
(Pew Research)

Internet users from lower-income households spend less time online.

Annual income of Americans
who are almost constantly online
Percentage
More than $75,00040%
$50,000-$74,99929%
$30,000-$49,99930%
Less than $30,00027%
(Pew Research)

Most (37%) live in an urban area.

Area of livingPercentage of Americans that
are almost constantly online
Urban37%
Suburban30%
Rural23%
(Pew Research)

37% of people that are almost constantly online are blacks.

Ethnicity of those who
are almost constantly online
Percentage of
US citizens
Blacks37%
Hispanics36%
Whites28%
(Pew Research)

Men in the US are slightly more prone to be almost constantly online.

GenderPercentage of Americans who
are almost constantly online
Male32%
Female30%
(Pew Research)

Other interesting impacts of internet addiction

About 8% of people use the internet to avoid their problems.

Relationships of 6% of people suffered due to excessive internet use.

(Brandon Gaille)

People with internet addiction are 14 times more likely to have depression and anxiety.

  • 8 times higher chance of depression
  • 9 times higher chance of anxiety

(Verywell Mind)

Smartphone/Cell Phone Addiction Statistics

How many people suffer from smartphone addiction?

Roughly 6.3% of smartphone users worldwide are addicted to their smartphones.

More than 399 million user are addicted to smartphones

An average of 16% of adolescent mobile phone users are addicted.

(Addiction Center)

According to Ericsson, there were 6.34 billion smartphone subscriptions worldwide in 2021. Using the percentage above, we can estimate there could be more than 399 million smartphone addicts.

(Ericsson)

The data from 2014 suggests that 66% of the world population suffers from nomophobia.

Nomophobia is a fear of being without a mobile phone (nomo; no mobile).

(Trend Hunter)

Around 47% of Americans say they’re addicted to their smartphone.

(Reviews)

How many teenagers suffer from smartphone addiction?

Young adults aged 18 to 24 are among the most nomophobic groups.

Around 77% of them said they carry their mobile devices everywhere with them.

(ResearchGate 4)

Half of the teenagers feel addicted to their smartphones.

59% of parents say that their kids are addicted to their mobile phones, with 66% saying their kids spend too much time on their phones.

Percent of parents saying
their kids are addicted to
their phones
66%
Percent of parents saying
their kids spend too much
time on their phones
59%
(CSM)

How many hours per day do Americans spend on their cell phones?

An average American spends 2 hours and 54 minutes daily on their phone.

Average time spent on a phone in the US

That’s according to a Reviews survey in 2022.

Here’s the breakdown of time spent on a phone by years:

YearTime spent on
a cell phone
20222 hours 54 minutes
20213 hours 54 minutes
20203 hours 49 minutes
20193 hours 43 minutes
20183 hours 35 minutes
(Reviews, eMarketer)

42% of people under 18 spend an average of 4 hours and 17 minutes on their phones daily.

More accurately:

Time spent
per day
Percentage
4+ hours15.1%
3-4 hours26.9%
1-2 hours35.6%
Less than
an hour
22.5%
(Statista 2)

How many times per day do people look at their phones?

An average smartphone user in the US checks their mobile device 344 times per day.

Furthermore, 71% of US people check their phones within 10 minutes after waking up.

(Reviews)

In the UK, 40% of adults check their phones within 5 minutes of waking up.

The percentage goes up to 65% for users under 35 years.

(Ofcom)

Psychological effects of extreme cell phone use

Over usage of a cell phone can lead to numerous psychological and other problems.

Here are just a few of them:

  • Conflicts due to excessive phone use: 32% of teens say they argue with their parents on a daily basis, with 38% arguing less than daily (CSM).
  • Low self-esteem & shyness: Among 95.8% of nursing students addicted to a smartphone, 28% had low self-esteem (NIH 2).
  • Worsening of cognitive functions
  • Suicidal thoughts: for teenagers who spend more than 5 hours per day on their phones, the chance of them having suicidal thoughts increases by 71% (SlickText).
  • Worse emotional processing
  • Anxiety, loneliness, and depression (ScienceDirect 2)

How do cell phones impact sleep?

A study on young students aged 20-24 showed a correlation between high phone usage and sleep deprivation.

Alongside depression, anxiety, and stress.

(NIH 3)

The blue light from the screen reduces the production of melatonin, which regulates the sleep-wake cycle.

Consequently, you have more difficulties falling asleep and waking up. That makes you less alert the next day and more sluggish during work.

(SCL Health)

On average, 40% of people from developed countries check their phones in the middle of the night.

Even more, 70% check it in developing countries.

(Deloitte)

Cell phone addiction demographics

The review of cell phone addiction studies revealed that 22.1% of adolescents and 27.9% of young people could be classified as addicts.

However, only around 5.35% of adolescents and 5.26% of young adults showed harmful or even dangerous behavior.

The study was conducted in 2016.

AdolescentsYoung adults
Percentage of those that
could be classified as addicts
22.1%27.9%
Percentage of those that
showed harmful behavior
5.35%5.26%
(Frontiers)

Among 29.8% of participants with smartphone addiction in a Chinese study, both genders exhibited a similar level of addiction.

More accurately:

  • 30.3% of males
  • 29.3% of females

(BMC)

Another study found that women spend an average of 600 minutes per day using a phone, compared to 459 minutes for men.

(NIH 4)

Other interesting smartphone addiction stats

15% of smartphone users in the US agree they’re wasting too much time on their phones.

Around 27% only somewhat agree with that statement.

(Statista 3)

When asked about productiveness, 13% of Americans say they would be more productive without their phones in the vicinity.

(Statista 4)

Picking up your smartphone can start a chain reaction in excessive usage.

Basically, when ending one phone-checking session, there’s a 50% chance of starting another phone-checking session in the next 3 minutes.

(ECM)

30% of people would rather live a week without sex than their phones.

The data comes from a small survey of 514 participants in 2011.

(Wired)

An estimated 26% of car accidents in the US are caused by cell phone use while driving.

Due to distraction, 3,142 were killed in car accidents in 2020 in the US.

(Auto Accident)

Social Media Addiction Statistics

How many people suffer from social media addiction?

More than 210 million internet and social media users are addicted to it.

Those are the last official number back from 2017, meaning they’re now much higher.

Suppose we estimate that the number of people addicted to social media increased similarly to the number of active social media users. In that case, at least 352.4 million people are now addicted.

(ScienceDirect, Datareportal 3)

How many teenagers suffer from social media addiction?

Around 34% of American teenagers (or over 14 million) really enjoy using social media.

More specifically, they enjoy using social media “a lot.” While that doesn’t classify them as addicts, it can be a sign to pay more attention.

Furthermore, 12% of tweens also claim they enjoy social media “a lot.”

Teenagers saying they enjoy social media “a lot”34%
Tweens saying they enjoy social media “a lot”12%
(CSM 2)

Roughly 5% of young people in the EU suffer from social media addiction.

The data is from 2015, suggesting the percentage could now be higher.

(Horizon)

Around 27% of children who use social media for more than 3 hours per day have signs of poor mental health.

(Addiction Center 2)

How many hours per day do Americans spend on social media?

An average American spends 2 hours and 14 minutes on social media daily in 2022.

In 2021, the average time was 2 hours and 7 minutes.

Average social media screen time in the US

A breakdown of the average social media screen time in the US:

YearAverage time spent
on social media
in the US
20222 hours 14 minutes
20212 hours 7 minutes
20202 hours 3 minutes
20192 hours 4 minutes
20182 hours 1 minute
20172 hours 6 minutes
20161 hour 42 minutes
(Datareportal 2)

How is social media addiction impacting people’s lives?

People addicted to social media can suffer from multiple symptoms that impact their daily life:

  • Feelings of sadness
  • Dissatisfaction with life
  • Increased chance of developing a mental illness like depression or anxiety
  • Difficulties with falling asleep
  • Ignoring real-world relationships
  • Reduced empathy
  • Withdrawal symptoms when trying to cut off social media

(Recovered)

39.9% of adults using social media have at least minimal symptoms of depression.

Depression among adult social media users

Here’s a table of how many depressed people are using social media:

Level of depressionPercentage of adults
using social media
Minimal39.9%
Mild29.8%
Moderate21.5%
Severe8.8%
(NIH 5)

Social media demographics

The average social media user spends 2 hours and 27 minutes on social media every day.

Looking at monthly numbers, most Android users spend their time on YouTube, clocking 23.7 hours.

Monthly Android social media screen time

Here’s a breakdown of monthly Android screen time of social media apps:

Social media
platforms
Monthly screentime
of Android users
YouTube23 hours 42 minutes
Facebook19 hours 36 minutes
TikTok19 hours 36 minutes
WhatsApp18 hours 36 minutes
Line11 hours 36 minutes
Instagram11 hours 12 minutes
Twitter5 hours 6 minutes
Telegram3 hours
Messenger3 hours
Snapchat3 hours
(Datareportal 3)

Around 45% of women self-report being addicted to social media, compared to 33% of men.

GenderSomewhat addicted
to social media
Certainly addicted
to social media
Women34%11%
Men26%7%
(Statista 5)

Furthermore, 41% of Whites and Hispanics self-report being addicted to social media.

African Americans are the least likely to self-report social media addiction.

EthnicitySomewhat addicted
to social media
Certainly addicted
to social media
White32%9%
Hispanic29%11%
Asian277
African
American
258
(Statista 6)

Younger females spend the most time on social media.

Males from the 16-24 age group spend less time on social media them women from the 25-34 age group.

Age groupAverage time spend on
social media by FEMALES
Average time spend on
social media by MALES
16-243 hours 13 minutes2 hours 43 minutes
25-342 hours 50 minutes2 hours 34 minutes
35-442 hours 27 minutes2 hours 15 minutes
45-542 hours 3 minutes1 hour 48 minutes
55-641 hour 33 minutes1 hour 18 minutes
(Datareportal 3)

Most social media users are between 20 to 29 years old.

Also, 53.9% of all social media users are males.

Social media users by gender and age

A table of social media users by gender and age:

Age groupFemalesMales
13-196%7.1%
20-2914.1%18.1%
30-3910.1%12.1%
40-496.9%7.5%
50-594.9%4.9%
60+4.4%4%
(Datareportal 3)

With 42%, Snapchat is the most “popular” in households with $70,000 to $80,000 annual income.

Annual household incomePercentage of
SNAPCHAT users
Less than $30,00032%
$30,000-$60,00033%
$60,000-$70,00031%
$70,000-$80,00042%
$80,000-$100,00039%
More than $100,00039%
(Khoros)

41% of households with $75,000 of annual income use Twitter.

Annual household incomePercentage of
TWITTER users
Less than $30,00023%
$30,000-$74,99936%
More than $75,00041%
(Khoros)

Instagram is popular among the richest households, with 60% earning more than $100,000 per year.

Annual household incomePercentage of
INSTAGRAM users
Less than $30,00044%
$30,000-$60,00045%
$60,000-$70,00036%
$70,000-$80,00055%
$80,000-$100,00046%
More than $100,00060%
(Khoros)

Facebook is the most common in households that earn up to $60,000 or up to $80,000 per year.

Annual household incomePercentage of
FACEBOOK users
Less than $30,00085%
$30,000-$60,00088%
$60,000-$70,00081%
$70,000-$80,00088%
$80,000-$100,00086%
More than $100,00086%
(Khoros)

There are now more than 4.62 billion social media users in the world.

That’s 57.75% of the world population (the current world population is 8 billion people).

(Datarepotral 3)

With 2.91 billion users, Facebook has the largest number of users.

Followed by YouTube with 2.56 billion users.

Quora has the lowest number of users, with only 300 million, which is right behind Reddit’s 430 million.

(Datarepotral 3)

However, WhatsApp is internet users’ favorite social media platform, with 15.7% suggesting so.

Instagram is a close second with 14.8%.

The lowest ones are iMessage and Discord, with 1%.

(Datarepotral 3)

Video Game Addiction Statistics

How many people suffer from video game addiction?

Roughly 3.3% of gamers suffer from video game addiction.

More than 105.6 million gamers are addicted to gaming

That’s around 105.6 million gamers worldwide, based on the reported 3.2 billion gamers around the globe.

(NIH 6)

How many teenagers suffer from video game addiction?

A study showed that 19% of men and 7.8% of women students show signs of video game addiction.

The study focused on 3,000 students.

(Newport Academy)

Up to 3.5% of German teens have problems with video game addiction.

(ScienceDirect 3)

How many hours per day do Americans spend playing video games?

The average American spends 1 hour and 6 minutes playing video games each day.

That’s 7 hours and 42 minutes per week, or 30 hours and 48 minutes per month.

Gaming time
per day
Per weekPer month
1 hour 6 minutes7 hours and 42 minutes30 hours and 48 minutes
(Statista 7)

Impact of video game addiction?

People with video game addiction usually suffer from symptoms like:

  • Problems with sleeping or getting quality sleep, causing a feeling of fatigue throughout the day
  • Poor hygiene due to prolonged hours of gaming without taking some time to wash themselves
  • Bad temper and conflicts due to excessive gaming
  • Lying about how much time is spent on gaming
  • Stop investing time in previously popular hobbies or relationships
  • Worse performance at work or in school

(Delamere, Psychiatric Times)

Video game addiction demographics

Among video game addicts, 94% are males, and 69% are of white ethnicity.

13% of video game addicts are Asian, while the remaining 18% represent the others.

EthnicityPercentage of
game addicts
White69%
Asian13%
Others18%
(Mindful Gamer, Game Quitters)

Based on Delaware research, 589,252 gamers in the UK could be addicted to gaming.

Here’s the table of video game addicts in the UK based on age group:

Age groupNumber of gaming
addicts in the UK
16-24129,980
25-34147,577
35-44129,134
45-54110,608
55-6471,953
(Delamere)

It’s twice as likely for a boy to have a video game addiction than a girl.

(Newport Academy)

Older studies suggest that too much playing games can elevate your blood pressure and increase your heart rate.

Presumably due to overly excited responses during gameplay and stress.

(NIH 7)

Read more:

Conclusion

These were the latest technology addiction statistics. They clearly show that these addictions have long been observed, and they shouldn’t be taken lightly.

The use of technology has gone up and isn’t showing any signs of stopping. This can lead to new, modern problems that will pester future generations.

Do you have difficulties reducing technology use? What technology do you find the most addictive?

Let us know in the comments.

Sources: GFK, Newport Academy, Consumer Affairs, Datareportal, Datareportal 2, Datareportal 3, Statista, Statista 2, Statista 3, Statista 4, Statista 5, Statista 6, Statista 7, ResearchGate, ResearchGate 2, ResearchGate 3, ResearchGate 4, Economic Times, CompareCamp, Liebertpub, ScienceDirect, ScienceDirect 2, ScienceDirect 3, IOP, NIH, NIH 2, NIH 3, NIH 4, NIH 5, NIH 6, NIH 7, Pew Research, EU Parliament, Brandon Gaille, Verywell Mind, Addiction Center, Addiction Center 2, Trend Hunter, Reviews, CSM, CSM 2, eMarketer, Ofcom, SlickText, SCL Health, Deloitte, Frontiers, ECM, BMC, Wired, Auto Accident, Horizon, Recovered, Khoros, Delamere, Psychiatric Times, Mindful Gamer, Game Quitters, Ericsson

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