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Angry Birds Costing $1.5 Billion in Lost Wages?

By - Source: The Atlantic | B 34 comments

Angry Birds is played for 200 million minutes each day. Just 5 percent of that could mean billions in wasted employee wages if played at work.

Alexis Madrigal of The Atlantic estimates that Rovio's Angry Birds is costing businesses around $1.5 billion in lost wages. The estimate is based on a recent report by AYTM claiming that the bird-flinging game is played for 200 million minutes per day. That essentially equals to 16 years of continuous game play every hour of every day.

According to the estimate, if 5-percent of those 200 million minutes are Americans playing Angry Birds at work, that's around 43,333,333 on-the-clock hours of Angry Birds per year. Multiply that number by the hourly pay of America's smartphone owners (a rather steep $35 average), then $1,516,666,667 worth of lost wages are lost due to the game. That's more than the rumored valuation of Angry Birds developer Rovio which is estimated to be $1,200,000,000.

In addition to the total number of minutes played, AYTM's report claims that, out of 1000 surveyed gamers, 32-percent feel somewhat relaxed when playing Angry Birds. 23-percent said that they felt "very" relaxed while 23-percent felt neither relaxed or anxious. 17-percent said they felt somewhat anxious while 6-percent felt very anxious.

The report also claims that 58-percent of the gamers surveyed felt that their moods improved after a round of flinging birds. 37-percent were found unchanged whereas 5-percent of the gamer moods actually worsened. Even more, the report concluded that unemployed gamers were 2X more likely to feel anxiety and 2.25X more likely to experience anger. However, gamers aged 18 to 24 were 5X more likely to be in a worse mood after playing Angry Birds than those 25 years and older.

Is Angry Birds addicting? 18-percent of the surveyed gamers said that they have never felt addicted when playing the game, whereas 54-percent chose the term "occasionally." Only 15-percent said that they actually felt addicted, and 13-percent admitted to being totally addicted. Unfortunately, there's no known medical cure to Angry Birds addiction other than deleting it off the device. Of course, there's always the free version on Chrome, on Google+....

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Top Comments
  • 21 Hide
    kinggremlin , September 15, 2011 5:45 AM
    This of course assumes that if people weren't playing Angry Birds that they would be doing something productive. Reality would likely find that to be true for 0-1% of those people at most. The average smart phone owner may make $35/hr (highly dubious, or at least misleading), but they are also lazy and more interested in checking their facebook page than doing any real work.
  • 14 Hide
    iam2thecrowe , September 15, 2011 10:06 AM
    I waste my time on Toms when im at work, not angry birds!
  • 14 Hide
    Zingam , September 15, 2011 9:43 AM
    Everybody who eats, pees, shits and breaths wastes wages! People must work for their master 24/7 until they die!!!
Other Comments
  • 21 Hide
    kinggremlin , September 15, 2011 5:45 AM
    This of course assumes that if people weren't playing Angry Birds that they would be doing something productive. Reality would likely find that to be true for 0-1% of those people at most. The average smart phone owner may make $35/hr (highly dubious, or at least misleading), but they are also lazy and more interested in checking their facebook page than doing any real work.
  • -6 Hide
    _Pez_ , September 15, 2011 5:52 AM
    hmm I live in Mexico, and I do play sometimes angry birds at work maybe 20 min once or twice at week. :D  I'm 26 and I find it very fun and relaxing when I'm stressed. Also my parents like the game and sometimes they play it for about 2 hours always at night. Now I'm looking forward to buy all the seasons or whatever other modes of angry birds game, if someone could let me know where to find them for PC, I will appreciate it. :D 
  • 2 Hide
    vaughn2k , September 15, 2011 6:22 AM
    I was hoping they would also consider in studying extra miles and extra hours spent by employees doing extra productive works, and compute for the manhour gain, translate it to $$$ gain, and compare the difference against the losses. These companies should also learn to consider the welfare of dedicated employees spending more time doing extra mile resulting to an excellent job well done. .
  • 4 Hide
    gmp23 , September 15, 2011 6:48 AM
    A relaxed worker is a happy worker which in turn is a better worker, right? Ok then, more angry birds it is!
  • 13 Hide
    thesnappyfingers , September 15, 2011 7:27 AM
    who the f cares. People take smoke breaks, coffee breaks, bathroom breaks, text message, check messages, and space off and most certainly occupy their work time with myriads of other activities . People can not and will not work at 100%.
  • 5 Hide
    Anonymous , September 15, 2011 7:33 AM
    my estimate: internet costing $1 trillion in lost wages
  • 13 Hide
    dthx , September 15, 2011 8:00 AM
    If angry birds had never exixted, I am quite confident that the same employees who now kill pigs with birds during office hours would have invented lots of other interesting methods for wasting their company's productive hours.
  • 14 Hide
    Zingam , September 15, 2011 9:43 AM
    Everybody who eats, pees, shits and breaths wastes wages! People must work for their master 24/7 until they die!!!
  • 14 Hide
    iam2thecrowe , September 15, 2011 10:06 AM
    I waste my time on Toms when im at work, not angry birds!
  • 3 Hide
    Wish I Was Wealthy , September 15, 2011 10:34 AM
    Well I'm self employed & I'd rather use a desktop to game.
  • 0 Hide
    rantoc , September 15, 2011 10:42 AM
    Without angry birds the gamer would instead be going postal and kill everyone he sees, how many lives doesn't that game save? But then again in the world of capitalism - money are more important than a bunch of saved lives. Ask the CEO's who produces their goods in where workers line in factory at abysmal conditions just to save a few cents per unit!
  • 8 Hide
    nebun , September 15, 2011 12:17 PM
    i wish i made 35 dollars an hour...most people make about 10 dollars an hour...after taxes is more like 7 dollars
  • 2 Hide
    gokanis , September 15, 2011 12:28 PM
    The key words are..... "if 5-percent of those 200 million minutes are Americans playing Angry Birds at work, that's " This is a non story about the word if to fill up blank space about nothing.
  • 4 Hide
    chomlee , September 15, 2011 12:29 PM
    I can only imagine how much windows solitaire must have cost people for the last 20 years. And before that, reading the paper. Bottom line is that people will slack off at work given any chance. I think not working 100% of the time is somewhat expected. It's when it is extreme that it becomes a problem.

    I will also admit that there are more distractions out there than there have ever been (not just angry birds). Companies not putting up with lazy workers and a competetive job market should keep it from becomming too much of a problem.
  • -3 Hide
    drwho1 , September 15, 2011 12:49 PM
    I don't get what's the big deal with those birds. (never play the game or care about it)
    Like someone said people have been playing solitaire (another stupid game) or reading the paper etc... there is no difference.

    Plus how they know (or could know) that this people are not playing with birds (of any kind) during their lunch break?
  • 0 Hide
    cinergy , September 15, 2011 1:09 PM
    Nice google+ add tho
    drwho1I don't get what's the big deal with those birds. (never play the game or care about it) Like someone said people have been playing solitaire (another stupid game) or reading the paper etc... there is no difference.Plus how they know (or could know) that this people are not playing with birds (of any kind) during their lunch break?


    Cool story bro. You're in the minority.
  • 3 Hide
    Anonymous , September 15, 2011 1:53 PM
    oh come on get it right, dont go calling these folks gamers, they are office decorations....
  • 0 Hide
    Anonymous , September 15, 2011 2:51 PM
    lol.... people who make 10 an hour get all of their taxes back.
  • 1 Hide
    Anonymous , September 15, 2011 3:11 PM
    THIS JUST IN: worldwide bowel movements account for trillions of wasted man hours. New SEC regulations regarding CEO hiring for the Fortune Top 100 Companies requires CEOs to have a broom shoved firmly up their rectum.
  • 0 Hide
    aracheb , September 15, 2011 3:40 PM
    officeDecorationsoh come on get it right, dont go calling these folks gamers, they are office decorations....


    lol.. kewl name to it..

    will take this advice and call my coworkers angrybirders office decorations.

    Rafael.-
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