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Tuesday, 16 October, 2001, 09:32 GMT 10:32 UK
Millions keep secret mobile
Graphic, posed by a model
One in 10 mobile owners now has a second handset, a survey has suggested.

The international Motorola study found that the spare gets used for love affairs, clandestine business dealings or, somewhat less excitingly, just as an individual hotline between friends.

In many cases, the owner did not want a partner or other family members to know about it.

Report author Dr Sadie Plant said: "The second mobile is just one of the ways in which the whole mobile industry has changed the way people behave and has introduced new rituals to society.

"People say that their mobiles have made it much easier to deal with feelings and intentions, or more commonly arrangements and whereabouts."

Woman on phone in Oslo
Mobiles: Handy for making arrangements
Dr Plant also found that mobiles are now an integral part of all types of relationships, not just illicit ones.

Many people found that being able to speak to loved ones from wherever they were helped cement relationships, she said.

Others found that they talked a lot more because of the phone and were able to form new friendships more easily.

Dr Plant travelled to Chicago, Tokyo, Beijing, Hong Kong, Bangkok, Peshawar, Dubai, London and Birmingham for the study.

She said mobile technology had made a radical difference in the way society works and plays.

"Whatever it is called and however it is used, the cell phone alters the possibilities and practicalities of many aspects of everyday life," she said.

"The cell phone changes the nature of communication, and affects identities and relationships.

"It affects the development of social structures and economic activities, and has a considerable bearing on its users' perceptions of themselves and the world."

See also:

25 Sep 01 | UK
Queen rings the changes
13 Nov 00 | UK
Hung up on mobile phones
04 Jul 00 | Business
Mobiles 'owned by 50% of UK'
25 Apr 01 | Business
Vodafone customers don't ring
04 Jul 00 | UK
Engaged to your mobile
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