One of the first things that many people do when waking up in the morning is reach for their smartphone. Whether checking the latest developments in the news or catching up on social media, we’ve created a culture in which FOMO – or the fear of missing out – is a very real thing.

For some, waiting until the morning is no longer sufficient.

A new study from Deloitte that analyzed the mobile phone habits of more than 4,000 people indicates that one in three adults in the UK – and half of those between the ages of 18 and 24 – wake up in the middle of the night to check their smartphone. Of those surveyed, one in 10 said they reach for their smartphone as soon as they wake up with a third admitting they do so within 15 minutes of waking.

Paul Lee, head of technology, media and telecommunications research at Deloitte, noted that what smartphones enable people to do is to keep tabs on what's happening, what people are saying and what people are posting. You can already do that throughout the day and now, smartphones are encouraging people to do the same at night.

The results shouldn’t be all that surprising given our love affair with mobile devices. This past summer, if you recall, nearly a third of survey-takers said they would rather give up sex for an entire quarter instead of having to trade in their smartphone for a feature phone for just one week.

Fortunately, such focused smartphone use may lessen over time.

Lee said that when we have something new, we tend to overreact to it, adding that we’re just now getting used to technology that’s only nine years old at this point.

Image courtesy Adam Hester, Blend Images