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CHRISTOPHER TAYLOR'S BOOKS

Wednesday, February 02, 2011

THAT'S A LOT OF TEXTS

"And you can Google it!"

There are a few sites that put out big informational graphics about a topic, once in a while I've posted them on here. The problem I have is that sometimes they're a bit... well I am skeptical of some of their claims. For example, there's this one:

Cell Phone Usage
Via: Izismile

That's all kind of neat, except look at that text data. They claim that every day, two hundred trillion text messages are sent on cell phones. Wait, what?

There are just about seven billion people on earth. That means on an average day, every single man, woman and child on the planet is sending over 28,000 text messages. There are 1440 minutes in every day, and that would mean every single person on the planet is sending almost 20 text messages a minute, every single minute of the day. That's three seconds a text, without pausing, without reading what someone else is sending; never sleeping or eating. From every single person on earth, many of whom have no cell phone to begin with.

Somehow, I find that statistic doubtful. Maybe 200 billion? That's a bit more plausible, it divides all those numbers by 1000. That would mean each person is sending about 28 messages a day, which given the huge numbers teens send out is more reasonable. They're making up for people like me who have no cell phone at all.

The problem is, with a mistake like that, it makes me wonder if any of the other stats are valid. Is the second most popular use of a cell phone after texting to check the time? Is Apple responsible for 94% of application downloads (that seems particularly doubtful to me as well). And the rest of these info charts, how valid are they? Did people just invent crap to post and giggle as people spread it around the internet?

Now I wonder if I want to use these images at all, ever.

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