Technology, Teenagers

Pew: 95% of US teenagers have a smartphone, 72% at least sometimes feel good without it

70% of teenagers believe smartphones contain more benefits than harms, as opposed to 30% who believe the opposite.

Enjoying smartphones, or stuck with them? (Photo: Ollyy/Shutterstock)

Pew published a poll today (Monday) conducted in September-October 2023, which looked at the actions and views of teenagers and parents regarding the use, benefits, and harms of smartphones.

38% of teenagers believe they spend too much time on their phones, and 27% believe they spend too much time on social media.

Teenage boys are about ten points less likely to say they spend too much time on their phones and social media. Almost half of teenage girls say they have cut back on their smartphone and social media usage, as opposed to just a third of teenage boys.

About three-quarters of teens report always or sometimes feeling happy and peaceful when they don't have their phone, though 45% of teenage girls report feeling lonely without it, as opposed to 34% of teenage boys.

Teenagers are equally divided on whether smartphones help or hurt making friends, but they broadly agree that they are great tools for pursuing hobbies and interests (69%) and for being creative (65%). A plurality also believe it helps them do well in school (45%).

Overall, 70% of teenagers believe smartphones contain more benefits than harms, as opposed to 30% who believe the opposite.

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