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Gadgets 'no substitute for talking'

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People are lacking face-to-face communication with friends and family due to incessant march of technology, a study says

People are unhappy with the lack of face-to-face time they spend with friends and family, a study has found.

The incessant march of technology is to blame with texting, emailing and social networking taking over from traditional chatting, it found.

The research reveals that 95% of those quizzed are dissatisfied with the amount of ‘real’ time they spend with friends and family.

Whilst 58% prefer face to face above all other forms of communication, the nation’s dependence on chatting online – gadget to gadget – is reducing the time available for socialising.

One in three (31%) admit to wasting time browsing online without any clear purpose – a phenomenon known as Wilfing (What Was I Looking For).

The study also revealed that one in five people find managing their online accounts time consuming, whilst some (4%) declare it takes up most of their time.

Some 25% of consumers are concerned about becoming more dependent on technology for their social connections while a fifth (21%) cite loneliness as a major concern.

Behavioural psychologist Peter Collett said: “Gadget to gadget is fine, provided it doesn’t replace face to face.

“In fact gadget to gadget comes into its own when it’s used to arrange face to face. That way people get the best of both worlds – a digital fix followed by the rich rewards of human company.”

The research was conducted by Nescafe Gold Blend and The Future Laboratory.

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