My Tools: Moment – how much do I use my phone?

Most of us are inseparable from our smartphones and spend much of our life gazing into screens small and large. I’ve often wondered how much time I spend looking into my iPhone screen and now I know – a lot.

Moment is an iOS application that tracks how much time I am spending on my iPhone and how many times I pick it up.

If you had asked me before running Moment I would have told you that I probably used my iPhone for about an hour a day. You can see from the image below that I use it more than that, especially at a weekend. Much of this time is spent multi-screening when I’m also watching the television, but it’s still a lot of time, particularly as I didn’t think that I watched that much television.

I tend not to wear a watch so I was interested by how many times I pick up my iPhone. The answer appears to be somewhere between 30 and 50 times which is a few times an hour for the waking day (assuming I don’t pick it up in my sleep) which doesn’t seem too unreasonable.

What these image don’t tell you is that I also have an iPhone I use for work, so this isn’t all of my iPhone screen time. I also run Moment on that phone and was surprised by how little I use that phone in a normal working day.

There’s an axiom that says that you have to be able to measure things to manage them. Having measured my iPhone usage I think it’s time to manage it down to a more sensible number. An extra hour a day is a lot of time to recover that could be invested in more useful activities.

You need to leave the application running for it to take measurements, but that doesn’t seem to be a problem. The impact on battery life seems to be minimal also.


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