Published on 26 Jan 2021

Spike in online apps usage could be driven by feelings of COVID-19 isolation

The use of online messaging and social media apps among Singapore residents has spiked during the COVID-19 pandemic, a NTU Singapore study has found.

Three in four respondents (75%) said that their use of WhatsApp during the pandemic increased. This was followed by Telegram (60.3%), Facebook (60.2%) and Instagram (59.7%). 

Accompanying this spike is videoconferencing fatigue, found the NTU Singapore study, which surveyed 1,606 Singapore residents from 17 to 31 December last year. Nearly one in two Singapore residents (44%) said they felt drained from videoconferencing activities, which became more frequent during the COVID-19 outbreak. 
Some 86% of the respondents reported that their use of videoconferencing tools increased during the pandemic. 
The increased use of online communication tools could in part be driven by feelings of isolation, said the researchers.

The nationwide online study looking at the new normal following the COVID-19 outbreak is commissioned by the Centre for Information Integrity and the Internet (IN-cube), a new research centre at NTU’s Wee Kim Wee School of Communication and Information (WKWSCI) and conducted by a local polling company. 

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