KFC brings out the bucket for mobile devices at mealtime

SICK of your partner checking their phone during mealtimes?

Fast food giant KFC is suggesting you toss their device in the bucket.

KFC's Northmead store in New South Wales is trialling Mobile Collection Buckets for a week, encouraging their customers to ditch all their devices at dinner and talk instead. And other stores could follow.

The move comes after a survey which found the majority of Australians (67%) admitted their personal devices distracted them during meals.

Three in four (73%) expressed  frustration with family and friends who checked their phones too much.

Nine in ten Aussies believe technology has made us less social at mealtime (87%).

But only one in four come clean to spending five minutes or more per meal using personal devices.

Overall, Australians each spend 4,970 minutes on their devices while eating. 

Is the use of personal devices killing conversation?

This poll ended on 05 March 2014.

Current Results

Yes. I hate it


No. What's to talk about?


No. We ban devices at the dinner table


Yes. But the kids won't listen


This is not a scientific poll. The results reflect only the opinions of those who chose to participate.

Family man, technology commentator and self-confessed tech-aholic, Trevor Long, has been challenged by KFC to spend a week without using personal devices when sharing meals with family and friends.

"This is not going to be easy for me at all - I surround myself with technology and am a heavy user of social media so I like to stay almost constantly connected and engaged via my technology," said Long.

"We have a very young family, so meal time can be a long and drawn out process. As a result often the lure of social media or email can mean that gadget is used a bit more than perhaps it should be.

"Hopefully this challenge will show me just what I'm missing out on whether it's at home or at work when I'm taking a break for a meal - and this time it's a genuine break!"

KFC's Nikki Lawson said: "It's not uncommon for us to see customers using personal devices in KFC restaurants when they're sitting by themselves, but what's surprising is we often see groups of people buy a meal together then not speak to other as they're too busy with their phones and tablets."


• Men (70%) are more likely than women (67%) to check with personal devices over dinner, while women (79%) are more likely than men (67%) to become frustrated by others who check their phones too much

• The devices people use at the dinner table on a regular basis are:
o Smartphone/mobile (94%
o Laptop (76%)
o PCs (56%)
o iPad/iPad mini (47%)
o Tablets (24%)

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