Four out of five UK adults now have a smartphone with the market split 50/50 between the two rival operating systems.
Smartphones’ connection with our personalities is so marked that psychologists say smartphones have become an extension of ourselves.
Not only can they be personalised to our preferences, but even the type of smartphone reveals clues about who we are.
Researchers gave over 500 smartphone users several questionnaires about themselves and their attitudes towards their mobile phone.
A comparison of both Android and iPhone users revealed that iPhone users are more likely to be:
- More than twice as likely to be women
- More likely to see their phone as a status object
- More extroverted
- Less concerned about owning devices favoured by most people
In contrast, Android users were more likely to be:
- More honest
- More agreeable
- Less likely to break rules for personal gain
- Less interested in wealth and status
Dr David Ellis from Lancaster University said: “In this study, we demonstrate for the first time that an individual’s choice of smartphone operating system can provide useful clues when it comes to predicting their personality and other individual characteristics.”
In a second study, the psychologists were then able to develop a computer programme that could predict what type of smartphone a person owned based on differences between iPhone and Android users.
His co-lead Heather Shaw from the University of Lincoln said: “It is becoming more and more apparent that smartphones are becoming a mini digital version of the user, and many of us don’t like it when other people attempt to use our phones because it can reveal so much about us.”
The research appears in CyberPsychology, Behaviour and Social Networking.