Chatty Britons spend longer on phone

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Britons are chatting like never before - spending a record amount of time on the phone, according to research revealed today.

The UK spent a total 247 billion minutes on the phone last year, a massive rise from 233 billion in 2006.

While the phenomenon began several years ago, the size of last year's increase was unprecedented.

While people are talking more, they are doing it less from their landlines, according to Ofcom's annual UK Communications Market Report.

One in 10 people with a landline at home never actually use it and 70 per cent of people with a mobile and landline use their mobile to make calls even at home.

But calls on mobiles more than made up for the downturn - rising from 82 billion total minutes in 2006 to 99 billion last year.

The average person now spends 10 minutes each day talking and texting on their mobile, double the figure for 2002.

They also send 67 texts every month, up from 53 in 2006.

Nearly 60 billion text messages were sent in the UK in 2007, an increase of over a third since 2006 and a 234 per cent rise since 2002.

The report found that people are spending more time - an average of seven hours and nine minutes a day - using communications services, including the TV, internet, mobiles, and radio.

Internet use at home increased fourfold to 24 minutes spent by each person each day on PCs and laptops.

Compared to the cost of other goods, average household spend on communications decreased slightly to around £94 a month.