When COVID-19 hit the U.S. in March and prompted widespread shelter-in-place orders, millions of Americans suddenly found themselves in complete isolation. According to psychologists, loneliness can take a serious toll on our mental and physical health. In fact, an American Psychological Association study shows the lack of social connection heightens health risks as much as smoking 15 cigarettes a day.
Fortunately, technology has allowed us to stay socially connected even when we are physically separated. In fact, U.S. smartphone and laptop usage have skyrocketed since the start of the pandemic. According to a June 2020 GlobalWebIndex survey, 45% of respondents say they have spent more time on their smartphones and 43% have increased their laptop usage. This might explain why we at Phobio have seen a huge spike in device trade-ins.
Here are three ways people are tapping into technology to stay connected in the midst of a global pandemic:
1. Zoom Get-Togethers
In the era of social distancing, Zoom’s video conferencing service has surged in popularity. The platform has become a social hotspot where friends and family can gather, mingle and celebrate. From happy hours and trivia nights to wedding ceremonies and even funerals, people are using Zoom for every gathering imaginable. In late August, the company reported its revenue for the May-June period more than quadrupled from the same time last year to a whopping $663.5 million.
2. Online Dating
Finding love during a pandemic may seem like a lost cause, but online dating makes it possible. Match Group, which owns Tinder, OKCupid, Match and Plenty of Fish, reports higher usage of its dating apps in recent months. During the second quarter of 2020, the company has seen a 15% increase in subscribers, up to 10 million.
Of course, dating in the age of coronavirus comes with a warning label. In March, Tinder added a popup message reminding users to wash their hands and practice social distancing. Many apps have launched new video dating features as a safer alternative to in-person connections.
3. Social Media
In an effort to fight quarantine loneliness, many Americans are spending more time bonding with family and friends via Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and other social networks. Since the start of the pandemic, social media platforms have introduced a number of new features to keep users connected, including live streaming, video chat and gaming. According to a Harris Poll conducted between late March and early May, up to 51% of U.S. adults reported using social media more since the beginning of the coronavirus outbreak.
With everyone relying heavily on technology to stay connected, it’s more important than ever to have well-functioning phones, tablets, laptops and other devices. This is probably one of the reasons Phobio has seen a huge increase in trade-ins since the onset of the pandemic.
For today’s cash-strapped consumers, trade-ins provide an affordable option for upgrading to a new smartphone or device. If you want to offer customers an easy-to-use trade-in experience, we can help.
Ready to talk? Contact us today!