Americans devout more than 10 hours a day to screen time, and growing


How many hours throughout the day do you think you spend using you phone, watching Netflix on your television or writing a paper on your laptop? According to a Nielsen Company audience report, the average person in the United States spends approximately 10 hours and 39 minutes each day. This average of 10 hours and 39 minutes includes our daily use of smartphones, computers, video games, radios, tablets and TVs.

The Nielsen Company also revealed that there has been a one-hour increase over the last year in how often an average American spends their time staring at the screen. “The number of devices we have proliferate the overall time spent with screens, and the number of devices is increasing. A lot of people have been thinking about how or whether this time spent is a good use of their time, which becomes a deep issue,” said Steve Gortmaker, a professor of health sociology at Harvard University. We are spending and using nearly half of our time throughout the day staring at the screen. Smartphones are used about one hour and 39 minutes daily to consume media. Personally speaking, I can say I definitely believe that. I spend that much time or maybe even more on a daily basis checking the latest posts on Instagram or answering back friends on Snapchat.

In addition, another report concluded that out of 168 hours in a week, we spend more than 50 hours with devices, said Douglas Gentile, professor of psychology at Iowa State University. Too much screen time and other inactive behaviors also have been linked to obesity risk, especially in children. Families should limit their screen time, beginning with limiting the number of devices they encounter daily. For example, I babysit this little boy and every time I go over to watch him he is glued to the iPad. I always suggest playing board games or going outside to play basketball but there is no luck. Some parents need to learn how to shut down the tablets off before bed time and limit the use. Every night before going to bed, I make sure my phone is on airplane mode, making sure I am not distracted by any notifications I am receiving and my television is shut off at a reasonable time. Gortmaker suggested throwing out extra screens, and not having them in your bedroom. Certainly, we need these devices, and there will never be a time where we will actually get rid of them, but let’s try limiting the amount of time we are using them and giving ourselves a break.

Howard, Jacqueline. “Americans at more than 10 hours a day on screens.” CNN, Cable News Network, 29 July 2016,

6 thoughts on “Americans devout more than 10 hours a day to screen time, and growing

  1. Pingback: Here's How to Get Into Flow State - Operation: Abundance

  2. Pingback: 4 Social Media Habits to Give Up to Be Happier in 2020

  3. Pingback: These Updated Stats About How Often We Use Our Phones Will Humble You by - Serebral 360º

  4. This was very well written, and I have to agree with everything you have said in this blog. Technology is taking over our life and there is nothing we can do about it. As I walk all across campus students are looking at their cell phones while walking, or their eyes are glued to their computer screen at the library. It is also more convenient to have an ebook (online book) rather than hard copy. After a long day of staring at my computer my vision is even sometimes blurred and I get a headache. These are only some of the physical problems that occur due to the over use of technology. I also agree young children are being exposed more and more to technology every day. Parents will get lazy and annoyed so they just hand their children an Ipad because it is easier. When I babysit the same thing happens, I suggest taking them outside to play or playing a game but the kids usually have their eyes glued to their game devices. This article linked below interested me because recently McDonalds has followed the trend and started to add kiosks to their restaurants. The first and oldest fast food restaurant has even fallen into the trap of technology. This article states that it is difficult for senior citizens to navigate this advanced technology that they are not familiar with such an interface. There are no mental models or experiences that a senior citizen customer can relate to because technology was not around at that time. Overall I think that adding things such as kiosks not only hurts employment opportunities but is turning our world into a place where you cant escape from the computer screen.

  5. Screen time is definitely consequential to kids now a-days. Only ten years ago, there was no such thing as an iPad, and no kids had access to iPhones. Now, it seems that every kid has a handheld device distracting them at all times. This takes away from the interactions with others, especially family. Companies are even beginning to realize the negative toll screen time is having on people. One of the hotel chains in the United States, Wyndham Grand, has created a program for families to reconnect. This program is something the family would sign up for ahead of time and offers a timed lockbox for electronics. The point is to allow families to have a trip where they can relax and interact with each other, rather than social media. The hotel has activities for families and kids to complete together that will make them forget all about their electronics. Activities include reading, building forts, and making snacks. The hotel has recognized that it is important to parents to capture memories of their vacation, so they offer Instax cameras to use for the weekend to keep these memories saved forever in an old-fashioned way! To incentivize families to sign up for this program, the Wyndham Grand is offering discounts to those who stay in their hotels and participate. Since technology has become our lives, it seems that vacation is less about reconnecting with your loved ones and more about capturing the perfect Instagram photo. The Wyndham Grand hotels are working to bring back the old school vacation to bring families closer together in a (relatively) technology free environment.


  6. Technology is good and bad for many reasons. I do agree that people are on their devices way too often and it should limited significantly. Even though technology can provide children and adults with many positive opportunities, it has a strong impact on our well being. In an article by Katherine Lee, she states, “For instance, computers can be used to do research, play online math games, and improve language skills . Television can offer educational programs such as documentaries and other educational materials. Even video games can encourage developmental skills such as hand-eye coordination. Some motion-controlled, active games can also promote physical activity such as dancing.” While these are all positive benefits of being behind a screen, negative consequences also follow. In order to limit the amount of time behind a screen, adults should be a prime example for children because it may interfere with sleep, social interactions, attention span, schoolwork, and physical activity. Whether you are an adult or a child, the time spent behind a screen should be limited, and alternatives should be put into effect such as, turning off televisions and communicating with family and friends, limiting the time allowed on devices, and opting for alternative activities such as playing games or running around outside. These devices are necessary at times, but should not be used for hours just for entertainment.

Leave a Reply