NeoBytes :) is an occasional feature that takes a step back from the big headlines, to take a look at what else is happening in the vast, scary expanse of the tech world - often with a cynical eye, and always with a dose of humour.
The bathroom break, it seems, no longer offers the few moments of peace that it once did to take a step away from one’s hectic life. As our lifestyles become ever more interconnected, a growing number of us are struggling to tear ourselves away from our screens for even a couple of minutes, and for many, it’s not even possible to take a trip to the loo without bringing a smartphone along for the ride, as it were.
A survey commissioned by Telefónica’s O2 UK and Sony Mobile found that an astonishing 75% of respondents used their phone while using the lavatory, while around half also used their handsets – so to speak – while in the bath.
While 59% regularly texted while using the toilet, and 45% sent emails, 31% confessed to speaking on the phone while on the john. The results of the survey are certainly intriguing in their revelations of how our behaviours have changed with our more connected way of life – and perhaps the most eyebrow-raising statistic of all comes in the confessions from almost a quarter of men who admitted that they no longer urinate while standing up, preferring to take a seat on the throne so that they can keep both hands free to use their phones while relieving their bladders.
But of all the 2,000 men and women who responded to the survey, just 12% said that they actually felt ‘pressured’ to stay connected because of their busy lives; indeed, almost a third said that they took their phones to the bathroom in order “to prevent boredom setting in”.
The survey was commissioned ahead of the launch of Sony’s water-resistant Xperia Z (check out our hands-on) on O2, as 15% of people revealed that they had at some point dropped their phone down the bog. Information was not made available from the survey on how many people took video calls while in the bathroom, however – and frankly, I’m kind of glad about that.