Survey Says: The Call Is Coming from Inside the Bathroom

More than half of people admit to talking, texting and tweeting while using the bathroom, according to a new survey.

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Potty mouth: More than half of people admit to using their cell phones in the bathroom.Is there no safe haven anymore? Turns out plenty of people love talking, texting and tweeting during a, um, very basic function. So it's not surprising that they also love their apps. And small-business owners are finally realizing how important data backup -- since plenty of them have learned the hard way. Here's a closer look at some of the latest small-business surveys.

Don't Touch That Phone

Sure, we're a nation of multitaskers, but this might be getting a little out of hand. According to a survey by Insight Express and AdAge, 56 percent of people admit they use their cell phones while going to the bathroom.

Not sure we really want to know, but what exactly do they do with their phones while in the loo? Talking (70 percent), texting (62 percent), listening to music (20 percent), social networking (19 percent) and using location-based services such as Foursquare (13 percent). Seven percent indulge in the more traditional bathroom activity of reading.

While the survey wasn't specific to business owners, given how busy we are, there's a good chance that entrepreneurs account for a substantial percentage of those talking and texting on the toilet.

Is there a business opportunity here? Phone sanitizers, anyone?

Many App-y Returns

and wireless technologies are becoming essential to small businesses, AT&T's Small Business Technology Poll shows. Forty percent of small businesses say all their employees use wireless devices or technologies to work away from the office. That's up from 24 percent in 2008 and projected to grow to 50 percent by 2012.

Seventy-two percent of the small businesses surveyed use mobile apps in their businesses. In fact, about 40 percent of the business owners claim their businesses could not survive -- or it would be a major challenge to survive -- without mobile apps.

GPS/navigation and mapping apps are the most important ones for small business, used by nearly half (49 percent) of those surveyed. I don't have a keen sense of direction and I'm often on the road for business meetings and events -- I know I wouldn't survive a day without my GPS. (Well, I might survive, but I'd be extremely late.)

Back It Up

Small businesses are learning that it's crucial to back up computer data. Unfortunately, too many of us are learning it the hard way -- by losing data. In a recent study from online backup provider Carbonite, 42 percent of SMBs report losing data. Of those, 32 percent never retrieved their lost files.

Even business owners who regularly back up their data often put it at risk by using physical devices, which can be damaged or destroyed. Eighty-six percent of business owners use a physical device for part or all of their backup, including external hard drives (42 percent), USB/Flash memory sticks (38 percent) and CDs/DVDs (25 percent).

In addition to running their businesses, 65 percent of the business owners in the survey say they are responsible for backup duties at their business as well. Given that, why spend the extra time doing physical backup? Get thee to the cloud -- it's easy and cheap.

Rieva Lesonsky is CEO of GrowBiz Media, a content and consulting company that helps entrepreneurs start and grow their businesses. Follow Rieva at and visit to sign up for her free TrendCast reports.

Tags: apps, best apps, Business Trends, cell phone survey, cell phones, cell phones bathroom, cloud computing, computer backup, mobile, mobile apps, mobile phones, Rieva Lesonsky, software backup, Survey Says

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