A new study from the Pew Research Center measures the popularity of social activities among mobile phone and smartphone users, and finds that checking in – through geosocial services such as Foursquare and Gowalla – is the least popular.
While 83% of adults in the US own a cell phone, only 35% own a smartphone. Of those smartphone owners, 59% use their phone to access a social networking site, 55% use it to get location-based directions or recommendations, and only 12% use it for checking in to location-based social networks, including Foursquare, Gowalla, and others.
The survey also examined the demographics of smartphone owners using geosocial and location-based services:
- younger adults are more likely to use these services
- 68% of college graduates use them, compared with 44% of those who have not gone to college
- there are no significant differences by gender
- those in households making at least $75,000 per year are more likely to use location-based directions and info
The survey also included those who automatically add geotagging to their updates on social media sites like Twitter and Facebook. Just 14% of social media users say they include their location with their social posts (this equals 7% of American adults.)
The results are based on a national telephone survey of 2,277 adults conducted April 26- May 22, 2011 by The Pew Research Center’s Internet & American Life Project. Download the full survey results here.