The Christmas period is set to be pretty different this year. There won’t be the usual list of social engagements and Christmas parties, and most of us will have to resort to seeing family or friends virtually — quite unlike what we’re used to at this time of year.
So to keep our festive spirits up, many of us will be looking to use our broadband to connect with loved ones, shop for our Christmas presents and keep ourselves entertained over the festive season.
Predictions show that on average, each person will spend 12 hours using a digital device for Christmas-related activities this December, including gift shopping, video calling, buying groceries and streaming Christmas films and boxsets.
Average time per person spent using digital screens this December
|Christmas digital activity||Hours predicted to be spent in front of a screen|
|Watching Christmas films or box sets||5 hours 30 mins|
|Gift shopping||4 hours|
|Video calling||1 hour 30 mins|
|Food shopping||1 hour|
Based on a survey of 2000 people, over half of respondents (55%) said they plan to video call with family and friends to wish them a Merry Christmas. Unsurprisingly this number has dramatically increased since last year, doubling the number from 2019.
This year has completely changed how all of us communicate, and we found that a quarter of Brits (24%) admitted to only starting to communicate via video calling since the first lockdown began in March.
Make sure you have a good Zoom experience with these 7 tips for better video calls.
TV and movies play a big part of most Christmas traditions, and this year families will have even more time to spend on the sofa. So access to box sets, movie channels and subscription services is more important than ever this year.
Our survey revealed that people plan to spend an average of 5 hours 30 minutes in front of the box over Christmas, which is a 31% increase from last December. That means 202 million hours watching Christmas films or box sets across the three festive days — the equivalent of watching ‘Elf’ over 125 million times!
Each region of the UK is anticipating spending a different amount of time watching films and TV shows this Christmas, with Sheffield planning to spend the most at seven hours and 48 minutes. In contrast, respondents from Edinburgh are only planning to spend three hours and 54 minutes watching TV.
|UK region||Most amount of time anticipated watching Christmas films and box sets|
|Sheffield||7 hours 48 minutes|
|Birmingham||6 hours 18 minutes|
|Norwich||6 hours 12 minutes|
|Liverpool||6 hours 6 minutes|
|Bristol||5 hours 54 minutes|
|UK region||Least amount of time anticipated watching Christmas films and box sets|
|Edinburgh||3 hours 54 minutes|
|Belfast||4 hours 6 minutes|
|Nottingham||4 hours 12 minutes|
|Newcastle||4 hours 30 minutes|
After a very busy Black Friday and COVID-19 restrictions and fears affecting high street stores, it’s no real surprise that much more Christmas shopping will be done online this year. In fact, 86% of consumers said they’ll be browsing the web for present ideas. And for the first time ever, over half of Christmas gifts (55%) will be bought online, up from 45% last year.
This quickly adds up to even more screen time, with Christmas shoppers set to spend an average of four hours trawling the web for gifts, with more than half (57%) of consumers avoiding the supermarkets by completing their Christmas food shop online.
Of those gifts, a lot will be gadgets and tech — anything from laptops and computers to the latest iPhone 12, tablet, smart TV or gaming console. More devices, more shopping, more video calls and more streaming means your broadband will be put under additional strain this Christmas.
If you find yourself struggling with slow broadband, there are a few things you can try to make sure you don’t get any interruptions to your online Christmas activities.
Try repositioning and rebooting your Wi-Fi router, disconnect any unnecessary devices, and avoid busy usage times. Of course, if that doesn’t work, it might be time to switch to faster broadband.
It’s never too early to compare broadband deals and see if you could have a better Christmas streaming experience this year.