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IDG News Service - Thirty-five percent of Android and iPhone owners in the U.S. use apps such as Facebook on their smartphone before even getting out of bed, according to a survey conducted by telecommunications equipment vendor Ericsson.
The most popular in-bed activity is accessing social networks. Eighteen percent of users log in while they are still in bed, and the most popular application is Facebook, Ericsson wrote.
Today, Facebook has more than 250 million active users accessing the site through their mobile devices, according to its own statistics. Smartphone vendors are trying to capitalize on that success with tighter Facebook integration, in an effort to differentiate their products, according to Pete Cunningham, an analyst at Canalys. For example, HTC has launched the Android-based ChaCha and Salsa, which have a dedicated Facebook button. INQ and Sony Ericsson have also improved Facebook integration on some of their smartphones.
In the next year, we'll see more phone makers doing the same, but then they will have to find other ways to make their products stick out, Cunningham said.
Social networking remains important when people get up, with 22 percent of users checking in during the morning, and another 20 percent doing a last check in bed before going to sleep at night. However, the most popular time to check what friends are up to is late in the evening before heading to bed, according to Ericsson's study.
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The time of the day when smartphone usage is the lowest is during dinner, but 26 percent of users still can't put their gadgets aside.
Ericsson's survey also highlight the interest in tablets. When all U.S., respondents were asked what device they were
considering purchasing, respondents were almost as likely to choose a tablet as a laptop -- 16 percent said that a laptop was the device they planned to buy next versus 13 percent that had their eyes on a tablet.
A new mobile phone was the most common choice with 19 percent, while only 6 percent were planning to buy a netbook.
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