May 17, 2012 06:00 ET

iGR Finds That 59 Percent of Consumers Have Used Their Mobile Phones in the Bathroom in the Last 30 Days

New iGR Study Shows That 18 - 24 Year Olds Are 60 Percent More Likely to Send/Receive SMS in the Bathroom

AUSTIN, TX--(Marketwire - May 17, 2012) - iGR's latest primary research shows that most consumers really will use their mobile phones everywhere they go, including in the bathroom. At the beginning of May, iGR conducted a major survey of U.S. consumers to provide data for upcoming research reports. Aside from questions about use of WiFi, tablets, smartphones, applications, content and LTE, iGR also added a fun question about the use of phones in bathrooms.

iGR's consumer survey showed that:

  • The good news is that 41 percent of people said they had NOT used their phone in the bathroom
  • 43 percent sent or received texts while in the bathroom
  • 21 percent said they had sent or received email
  • 22 percent had sent or received a voice call
  • 20 percent played a game on their phone while in the bathroom (the birds must have been really angry...)
  • 10 percent listened to music
  • And 6 percent said they did something else with the phone.

So, clearly, there is significant use of mobile phones in bathrooms around the country. Now it gets a bit more fun -- iGR also looked at the demographic splits to find more about who is at fault:

  • Women are about 10 percent more likely to have made voice calls and send or receive text, but men are more likely to have used email.
  • Men are about 12 percent more likely to have played a game and 16 percent more likely to listen to music on their mobile in the last 30 days in the bathroom.
  • Those over 45 years old are 45 to 55 percent less likely to have used the phone in the bathroom. Contrast this with the 18 - 24 year olds who are 60 percent more likely to text in the bathroom. It appears the younger generation really believes they have to be in contact at all times.
  • There were no real trends by income -- it seems the 1 percenters are as likely to be chatting in the bathroom as anyone else. Education level is also not a factor.
  • Apple iPhone users are 20 percent more likely to be playing a game or listening to music in the bathroom as other smartphone users. And no real surprise that BlackBerry users are 16 percent more likely to be using email.
  • One puzzling data point is that LG and Nokia phone users are 42 percent and 74 percent less likely to be using phones in the bathroom than other brand users. Apple, HTC and BlackBerry users are the most active phone users in the bathroom.
  • It also seems LTE smartphone users just cannot put their new smartphones down -- they are 60 to 120 percent more likely to be using the LTE device in the bathroom!
  • People with young children are about 25 percent more likely to use the phone in the bathroom -- perhaps they have fewer times they can get away for some peace and quiet?
  • And finally, single people are about 20 percent more likely to be using their phones in the bathroom than the married or divorced. The latter perhaps have been trained by their spouses.

"This survey shows some disturbing trends and that no location is off-limits to mobile phone users," said Iain Gillott, president and founder of iGR, a market research consultancy focused on the wireless and mobile industry. "Anyone who has visited an airport bathroom recently knows just how many people are talking, texting and emailing. The survey data shows that younger generations are more at fault and that over time, it is likely that more and more mobile communication will take place in the bathroom."

iGR also addressed more serious wireless and mobile issues in the U.S. Consumer survey, including:

  • The market perception of Apple and its products
  • How mobile handsets, smartphones and tablets are really used by consumers
  • The perceived benefit of femtocells
  • Purchase of mobile device insurance policies
  • Use of WiFi in and outside of the home
  • How much content (and type) is consumed on smartphones and tablets
  • The price premium that Apple is able to command in the marketplace
  • Smartphone and tablet buying trends in April and May
  • Use of and plans to buy LTE smartphones
  • Demographics for age, income, employment, education, marital status, gender, number of children, mobile operator used, brand of mobile device used, and type of mobile devices used.

For more information on the data and statistics available in iGR's new U.S. Consumer Survey, contact Iain Gillott at (512) 263-5682 or at

About iGR

iGR is a market strategy consultancy focused on the wireless and mobile communications industry. Founded by Iain Gillott, one of the wireless industry's leading analysts, in late 2000 as iGillottResearch, iGR is now entering its twelfth year of operation. iGR continuously researches emerging and existent technologies, technology industries, and consumer markets. We use our detailed research to offer a range of services to help companies improve their position in the marketplace, clearly define their future direction, and ultimately improve their bottom line.

iGR researches a range of wireless and mobile products and technologies, including: smartphones; tablets; mobile applications; bandwidth demand and use; small cell architectures; DAS; LTE; WiMAX; VoLTE; IMS; NFC; GSM/GPRS/UMTS/HSPA; CDMA 1x/EV-DO; iDEN; SIP; macro-, pico- and femtocells; mobile backhaul; WiFi and WiFi offload; and SIM and UICC.

A more complete profile of the company can be found at

Contact Information

  • Contact iGR
    Iain Gillott
    (512) 263-5682
    Email Contact