London, United Kingdom, 14 July 2020 - The COVID-19 pandemic has led to a sharp increase in the use of communications, entertainment and social media applications for staying in touch with friends, shopping online and consuming multimedia content, which without careful management could affect the long-term performance of PCs and mobile phones. A recent study by CCleaner, a leader in system optimization software, found the number of monthly PC cleans by users to remove unnecessary files and data during lockdown increased by up to 200% while mobile cleaning increased by 55%, as devices accumulate extra clutter and junk from higher levels of digital consumption.
CCleaner’s latest ‘Digital Crap Index’ surveyed the online behaviors of 10,000 people around the world between December and May 2020*. It looks back at the first half of 2020 to evaluate the impact of COVID-19 on society’s use of technology, and tracks changes to digital consumption trends that could indicate a new standard in the years to come.
It found that one in three Netflix and Amazon Prime users spent an additional 3-5 hours per week using the streaming services, and in some cases people consumed up to 21 hours of extra content per week.
Almost half (44%) of supermarket app shoppers worldwide used online food delivery services such as Ocado, Tesco and Walmart an extra 3-5 times per month. Unsurprisingly, there was growth in online shopping for non-food items: 82% of shoppers said they used Amazon on a more frequent basis, and 40% said the same for eBay.
“The risks to online security have already been highlighted, but what we also need to consider is the impact on the functionality of devices. The more you use something, the more it depreciates in value and in performance unless it’s well-maintained,” said David Peterson, General Manager at CCleaner. “When we use our devices to browse the internet or run applications we continuously create junk files that take up valuable space and negatively impact the speed of the device at start-up and while it’s in use,” continued Peterson. “If our dependence on online services to manage our daily lives continues to increase as we expect it to, we can prevent the frustration of a slow machine or an app that quits unexpectedly by cleaning and tuning it on a regular basis.”
For many people around the world, communications platforms and social media became vital in helping to replace social gatherings and the human connection lost as a result of lockdowns. Almost half of all respondents (47%) used their devices more to speak with friends and family and 44% used video conferencing apps more frequently to socialize virtually. The same percentage of people used their devices more to access news, entertainment and social media.
The CCleaner Digital Crap Index 2020 also looked into PC and mobile device adoption trends, and maintenance habits of PC users. It is available for download here.
This report delivers information on what today’s PCs look like and how they’re used, cleaned, and updated. The data it contains is compiled from survey responses from a sample of over 10,000 CCleaner users from the UK, US, France, Germany, and across the rest of the world, and some statistical, anonymized and non-personal global data from our desktop and cloud-based applications.
*PC data was gathered between December 2019 and May 2020. Android data was gathered between January and May 2020.
About Piriform, makers of CCleaner
Piriform, which is now known as CCleaner, was founded in 2004 and is a global leader in system optimization software with hundreds of millions of home and business users worldwide. Its portfolio of software tools optimizes computing performance, improves security and extends the useful life of hardware.
As well as the flagship CCleaner, which makes PC, Mac and Android devices clean, safe and run fast, CCleaner also develops Defraggler which defragments hard drives, Speccy which delivers PC insight, Recuva which recovers lost or deleted files and CCleaner Browser, a fast, private and secure browser for Windows.
A CCleaner product is installed more than 23 million times a month and active CCleaner users exist in every single country worldwide. For more information, please visit: www.ccleaner.com