Arizona Spends the Most Time on Phones Than Any Other State

Arizona Spends the Most Time on Phones Than Any Other State

Averi Carlson, Contributor

In September of 2018, Apple added a feature that could track the screen time of every Apple product. Over the past year, they have been collecting the average screen time of every state in the United States. This new screen time tracker was created to help people become aware of how much they use smartphones in their lives. According to Emma Greguska, fifty-one percent of people tried to limit their usage and only about thirty percent were successful. Heather Kelly wrote, “It hasn’t changed my habits just yet, I am much more aware of — and anxious about — my relationship with my phone.

The lowest state average was Oklahoma with 131 minutes and the highest was Arizona with 276 minutes. Arizona residents spend about thirty-six hours a week on their phones which is twelve more hours than the national average. Furthermore, the average screen time in Arizona is more than twice the amount of the lowest state average. As a whole, they spend seventy days a year on their phone. That’s seventy days spent on phones that could be spent doing something more productive. 

Many were surprised to find that Arizona had the highest and not California. California has a population of about forty million, which is almost eighty percent more than the population of Arizona. While California still has a large screen time of 204 minutes, Arizona beats the time by 72 minutes. 

Some people believe that Arizona has a higher average because of the heat. Angel Mendoza said, “Four and a half hours doesn’t seem that unreasonable, especially since it’s way too hot to do anything else.” When it’s hot, people go to the pool to relax on a lawn chair, or stay in the house with air conditioning. Whether at the pool or home, there is a temptation to pick up the phone, especially when there isn’t anything else to do. Heather Kelly states, “I spent 36 hours and 23 minutes on my phone last week. That’s an entire workweek lost spent on Netflix and social media.” 

Chris Warton, an assistant dean at Arizona State University’s College, says, “I think television, in particular, is a worse public health crisis than guns… the TV is the centerpiece of people’s lives… There’s really almost literally nothing good about TV.” Others are agreeing and saying that Arizona has a screen problem. According to an anonymous survey, eighty-seven percent of people check their phone within five minutes before going to bed. This causes disruptions in sleep leading people to be tired in the morning.  

Warton also states that phones are ruining the social interactions that people have. According to Emma Greguska, “Eighty-five percent of smartphone users will check their device while speaking with friends and family.” People are losing social connections because they have become addicted to their phones.  

While Apple’s screen time app made is making residents in all states aware of the amount of time they spend on phones, the usage time increased by eleven percent from 2018 and is expected to go up in 2020. Arizona had the highest average this year and could continue to have the highest next year.