November 13, 2013, 2:34 PM

Even God can’t compete with the smartphone

Smartphone owners use their devices everywhere from public restrooms to church, LG finds.

Lead Photo

Is nothing sacred?

Apparently the answer for many smartphone owners is no. 48% of smartphone owners confess they would be comfortable using their devices in a place of worship, finds “Smartphone Secrets,” a survey of 1,152 U.S. adult smartphone owners conducted by research and consulting firm Kelton on behalf of LG Electronics, which makes smartphones.

Would being in bed with a partner cause smartphone owners to turn their devices off? Nope. 77% say they would openly use their devices in that setting, the survey says.

Perhaps being in a public restroom would make smartphone owners leave their devices in their pockets. Not a chance. 75% would feel no shame in using their devices in the water closet, the survey finds.

What’s more, among smartphone owners, 28% have used their phones while on a date with a significant other, 58% have used their phones when spending quality time with their family, and 62% have used their phone while around friends, the survey says.

“Smartphones have quickly become the modern day tool that most of us just can’t live without,” says James Fishler, senior vice president of marketing at LG Electronics USA. “With major advances in mobile technology in recent years, smartphones have gone beyond their original intent as a primary communication tool to become true life companions for everything from social situations to our most personal moments.”

64% of mobile phone users own smartphones, research firm Nielsen finds.

In addition to looking into where and when smartphone owners use their devices, LG studied how they use them. 35% of smartphone users admit to using their devices to avoid talking to someone, and 33% confess to using their phones to appear busy while alone in a restaurant or bar, the survey says. 48% of smartphone users say they have relied on their devices to take funny or shocking photos or videos, and 36% own up to using their devices to take “selfies” (self-portraits usually shared via social networks). And 41% of smartphone users divulge they have used their devices to research a topic to avoid not knowing about the subject during a conversation, the survey says.

With consumers using smartphones in all kinds of situations, it’s little wonder that they’re accounting for so much of shopper interactions with online retailers. 44% of time spent with online retail occurs on smartphones, web and mobile measurement firm comScore Inc. finds. But they are more likely to use tablets to buy. On average, 55% of mobile commerce sales occur on tablets while 45% stem from smartphones, according to data from 43 retailers that broke out their mobile sales figures by device for the recently published 2014 Internet Retailer Mobile 500. These 43 retailers will bring in $991 million in mobile sales in 2013—$544 million from tablets and $447 million from smartphones, the Mobile 500 finds. The 500 retailers ranked in the guide by their mobile sales will rack up $30.5 billion in mobile sales in 2013.

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