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Apical Releases Results of Smartphone Survey

February 17, 2015

Apical has announced the results of its second annual survey of smartphone users, which reveals some surprising results about the way people use their phones.

The imaging technology company surveyed 987 people over the age of 15 across Great Britain in November.

Of the smartphone capabilities, it’s the camera that’s gotten the most use and the most attention on social media. Of the 15-to-34-year-old women surveyed, 32 percent of them shared photos they’d taken on social media, while only 20 percent of men did so.

While many devices provide some kind of automatic brightness control, 69 percent of users aged 15-24 said they adjusted the manual screen brightness control to save power, while at least 40 percent of smartphone owners aged 15-65 and up reported changing the brightness.

"I derive from the results on manual brightness control that traditional methods for display power management do not provide a satisfactory user experience and more attention to power sensitive display technologies are needed,” Apical CEO Michael Tusch said.

While the imaging and video capabilities of smartphones keep improving over the years, only 35 percent of people are actually sharing videos from their devices. Very few users reported even editing videos on their devices, probably because the small screens on smartphones make it a task better suited for conventional PCs.

The reasons for the low rates of video sharing from smartphones are obvious to Tusch.

“First, capturing good video on a phone is not easy, and much of the video captured is simply not very interesting,” he said. “And second, even those great videos are hard to find once taken; memory is likely full of videos with opaque filenames, and searching for them requires watching each one.”

Tusch said that technologies to automatically index videos taken on smartphones as well as improve video quality exists today and could cause smartphone video to take off if they were more widely implemented.

If users aren’t sharing their own videos, more are watching them. Fourteen percent of men aged 15-34 have watched movies on their phones, and 33 percent of women in the same age group have watched online video on their phones as well.

If the results of the survey are any indication, it appears that smartphone manufacturers will have to keep improving battery life and displays.

Edited by Stefania Viscusi

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