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Teens send a median of 50 texts per day, dwarfing the volume of texts sent by an increasing number of U.S. adults who use text messaging on their mobile phones, according to the Pew Research Center.
Almost three in four U.S. adults are sending text messages on their mobile phones, but teenagers remain the champs when it comes to texting, a study released Thursday shows. The number of texting adults rose from 65% in September 2009 to 72% in May, the Pew Research Center's Internet & American Life Project found. However, the number of texts sent daily by adults was a fifth that of the 87% of teens who text. They fire off a median of 50 texts a day.
The study also showed how much our mobile phones have become an important part of our lives. About nine in 10 cellular phone users say their devices make them feel safer and help them in arranging plans with friends and family. Indeed, 65% of adults with phones have slept with their phones on or right next to their bed.
Parents with children are especially tied to their phones. Not only are they more likely to own a mobile phone than non-parents, they are also more likely to make five or more calls per day and more likely to sleep with their phones nearby. The study did not find any difference between the two groups in texting. However, like a misbehaving child, adults find their mobile phones irritating, while still loving them. More than two in five cellular phone owners say they are annoyed when a call or text message interrupts them.
In addition, 86% of phone-touting adults agreed that it's rude when people repeatedly interrupt a conversation or meeting to check their phone. Use of the mobile phone for entertainment doesn't seem to have caught on yet with adults. Only 39% said they used their phone to entertain themselves when they're bored. On the security side, spam appears to have found a place in mobile communications. Almost six in 10 adults have received unwanted or spam text messages on their phone, ranging from coupons to phishing schemes.
The Pew study was based on a survey of 2,252 U.S. adults from April 29 to May 30.