Nielsen just released the results of their study on smartphones and tablets and how often we use them in conjunction with television watching. They looked at users behavior in the US, UK, Germany, and Italy. I think what they found, is what you might guess.
Of course the United States leads the pack for information overload. We frequently used our tablets or smartphones while we also viewed what was on the tube. Over a quarter of us, in both cases, served for other information while we watched TV. Not surprising with all the commercials.
The UK wasn't for behind us in almost every category. For the most part, Germany and Italy seemed to mirror each others behavior and staying connected while they watched television wasn't as much of a priority. The same can be said for the United States and the United Kingdom. If you look at the percentages, they're reasonably close except for the 'never' category.
Take a look:
I would imagine these numbers will continue to increase as smartphones and tablets grow in popularity. Smartphone usage has hit 50% in the Unites States and I'm sure that weighs heavy on our preferences in that category. It's a fast paced world we live in. All the technology we have lets us multi-task like never before.
I would guess these numbers will become harder to nail down as technology becomes more of an extension of who we are. In may cases, we don't even realize we're using several devices at once, and taking in several streams of information. It's interesting research from the folks at Nielsen.