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Fancy yourself a Zookeeper or a COP

New research by Optus uncovers our Smartphone’s say a lot more about us than we think

With the second largest percentage of Smartphone usage in the world*, Australia is undoubtedly a nation of Smartphone lovers. Now, a new study from Optus#, in partnership with leading Australian psychologist Associate Professor Amanda Gordon, has revealed that they are more than just a means of communication - our Smartphones are a window to a whole new personality.

Whether you break into a sweat from the thought of being without it, or it is your aid in managing your family's busy schedule, as the Smartphone obsessed nation we are, Aussies can be classified by four distinct Smartphone personality types.

The Zookeeper
345 of Smartphone users
Professional organisers 'Tight schedule' is their middle name. They seek out simple solutions to organise themselves and their family's busy timetable
Calendar and weather apps are used religiously to manage activities for multiple members of the family.

(Constantly Online Professionals)
29% of Smartphone users
Contactable 24/7 - anywhere, anytime. Professional success drives them. Their handset is an extension of their office allowing work, social and personal to travel with them everywhere.
Email and calendar are mandatory. Gaming apps are equally important for unwinding during their downtime which is usually between meetings

(Fear of Missing Out)
24% of Smartphone users
Chief social planner
It's all about being in the know, being part of the conversation and never missing out.
If their Smartphone dies, they die!
Social networking and communication apps such as Facebook, Twitter and Skype are must-haves

The Social Creator 13% of Smartphone users
13% of Smartphone users
Conversation leaders, not followers. Biggest fear is to be behind the curve. They prefers to be in front of it. They are constantly seeking new information and forming opinions.
Top users of news and current affairs and online review apps such as IMDB, Trip Advisor and Urban Spoon.

Director of Armchair Psychology Sydney and co-creator of the personality types, Assoc. Prof. Gordon, said, "Mobile handsets are now considered a 'life partner' for most, holding valuable information and helping people to carry out their day-to-day lives through email, calendar, weather apps and social networking."

Gordon continues: "I was interested to learn that the Zookeepers are embracing technology, by making full use of the practical functions Smartphones offer as a way to make juggling theirs and their family's busy schedules that much simpler."

Michael Smith, Managing Director of Marketing at Optus said, "These days consumers have so much choice when it comes to mobile technology and applications, it is no surprise that the typical Smartphone user extends beyond tech-lovers or business professionals. Mums, young adults and social creators are now embracing this technology, customising their Smartphones to suit their different lifestyle needs."

The Zookeeper

The Zookeeper accounts for the biggest Smartphone personality type in Australia, with over a third (34 per cent) of us falling into this category. The Zookeeper is the switchboard or centre of the family, the organiser, and they use their handsets to streamline this process with high usage of the calendar, email and weather apps, which they use up to 3.3 times per week.


The COP is contactable 24/7. Their Smartphone is their business partner and it represents their email, organiser and content storage device all in one. Unsurprisingly, Email is the most important function with two thirds (69 per cent) of this group checking their email at least once a day. They are also high users of gaming apps that they make use of to occupy their rare downtime, gaming up to 4 times per week.


The FOMO has only one fear, that of missing out. They are social enthusiasts and see their Smartphone as the key to this independence as it provides them access to their friends, activities and indeed the world. The FOMO is an unsurprisingly high user of social media and SMS and is notorious for moving quickly through the latest apps, constantly seeking the latest and greatest.

The Social Creator

The smallest of all personality types, The Social Creator leads rather than follows. They are conversation starters, preferring to voice their opinion first to avoid being seen as 'following the crowd'. As such, they frequent online review sites and news & current affairs apps, accessing them up to 4.4 times per week.

Media contacts:

For further information, please contact Bang PR on (02) 9018 2222
Thom Landers: thom@bangpr.com.au
Katie Raleigh: katie@bangpr.com.au

Notes to Editors:

* Google and IPSOS Research Report October 2011

# Optus Smartphone Personality Research: The survey was conducted amongst 1,000 Australians aged 18 years and over. Surveys were distributed throughout Australia including both capital city and non-capital city areas. Fieldwork commenced on 23rd March 2012 and was completed on 27th March 2012. This study was conducted online amongst members of a permission-based panel.10 x 2 hour focus group discussions (6-8 participants per group) were held across Sydney (7) and Dubbo (3). Groups were conducted in June 2010.