How much our tech use is changing.

Today, Google published an interesting infographic, which shows the radical shift in how we use our personal computers, whereby the meaning of personal computers (or PC if you prefer) really no longer means your desktop or laptop computer. This isn't news to anyone; any smartphone or tablet owner knows just how much of their regular use has switched to the smaller/portable and more convenient device.

The Internet is the first thing that humanity has built that humanity doesn’t understand, the largest experiment in anarchy that we have ever had.
— Eric Schmidt
Google's full article is worth a read, click through on the image.

Google's full article is worth a read, click through on the image.

What's particularly interesting is how big a proportion of our usage is smartphone based - due to it being an ever-ready, pocket companion much of the time - but also as a companion to another screen.

I think it also raises an interesting point about the ubiquity of internet use. There was a time when Facebook use was primarily a desktop event. Now Facebook is scrambling to leverage it's burgeoning mobile user base. If you're anything like me, almost all of your social media interaction occurs via your mobile phone. Twitter, in my case, is virtually an iPhone feature - I almost never access it from another device - and then only from my iPad. Often, I'll reach for my phone simply so as not to interrupt whatever I'm doing on the other screen. I think it's virtually impossible for the small-screen revolution to be happening without the internet to fuel it; in a real sense, mobile computing exists to keep us connected to it.

Considering that less than a decade ago the internet was a fixed location affair primarily, this shift in use to constant, mobile availability somehow should feel more radical. Somehow it's very rapidly and subtly become embedded in our lives and we certainly take it for granted. When marketeers at companies like apple use words like 'revolutionary' it's not entirely hyperbolic, if somewhat overused and overstated.