50% Indian users unintentionally reach out for their smartphones: BCG study

The report also found that a typical smartphone user picks up their phone almost 70 to 80 times a day

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Ashutosh Mishra New Delhi

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Almost half of Indian consumers pick up their smartphones out of habit, often without any specific intention, said a recent study by Boston Consulting Group (BCG).

“In our research, we have seen around 50 per cent of the times consumers do not have clarity on why they pick up the phone – they do it out of habit,” said Kanika Sanghi, Lead, Centre for Customer Insights India, BCG.

The research titled “Reimagining Smartphone Experience – how surfaces can play a key role in making the phone smarter” segments clarity of intent while reaching out for smartphones into three parts - pre-determined, exploratory, and spontaneous.

The study, carried out by Boston Consulting Group (BCG), was based on clicks and swipes data of more than 1,000 users and in-depth consumer interviews, and looked at smartphone usage habits across India.

According to the report, while around 55 per cent of the time the consumer had no clarity of intent while picking up their phones, 50 per cent of the time consumers were very clear on the task to be accomplished.

Further, for 5 to 10 per cent of occasions, consumers had partial clarity on why they picked up their phones, said the report.

The report found that a typical smartphone user picks up their phone almost 70 to 80 times a day.

Further, categories like socialising, shopping, searching, and gaming featured among the top five activities for consumers to spend their smartphone-time on, according to the report.

The report also shed light on the proliferation of use-cases ranging from streaming to shopping which are enabled by smartphones today.

It said that users spend around 50 to 55 per cent of their time on streaming apps, followed by gaming, and shopping, both of which stood at 5-8 per cent usage.

Additionally, around 84 per cent of users check their phone within 15 minutes of waking up, said the report.

The study also talks about a concept of AI-enabled lock screen, dubbed as ‘Surfaces’, which will enable users to access features through their home screen directly without going to the app.

The products based around the concept already have a user base of approximately 220 million monthly active users in India, with 16 minutes average time spent per user, according to the study.

It can be used for functionalities such as live score tracking, watching highlights, among others, said the report.

“Smartphones are evolving, the recent spate of discussions in media and at industry events on themes like ‘AI on device’ or ‘app-less experience through Gen AI’ is a testament to that evolution. ‘Surfaces’ can serve as the conduit to deliver this new evolved experience that’s smart, seamless, and often enables serendipity,” said Nimisha Jain, Senior Partner and Managing Director, BCG.

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First Published: Feb 12 2024 | 8:44 PM IST

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