Study: You make five times as many writing errors on your phone than a PC

People make an average of five times as many errors writing on our phones than when using a computer, “even though fewer words are typed on mobile.”

New research from digital writing assistant Grammarly found that we make an average of five times as many writing errors on our phones than when we use PCs, “even though fewer words are typed on mobile.”

More specifically, they calculated that it amounts to 42 errors for every 100 words typed on mobile, versus just eight for every 100 words typed on a computer.

Grammarly also identified “the nine most common” problems that arise when communicating on mobile for business purposes, including: “wordiness,” “misspelled words,” “passive voice,” “vague words and phrases” and “missing articles.”

As for how the research was carried out, Michael Mager on the Grammarly Communications Team told Ladders that “Grammarly detected errors from millions of users typing with our writing assistant software on both mobile and PC.”

So, should you send important emails on your cell phone?

It depends on the nature of the situation. For instance, if you’re emailing on your phone, you’re likely to be doing something else simultaneously, like having your device function as a “second screen” while you watch television. This is why you should be extra careful sending to messages to people at work from your mobile device—especially your boss.

Diane Gottsman, an author, modern manners and etiquette expert, and owner of The Protocol School of Texas, illustrates why it’s important to avoid “grammar and spelling mistakes” in emails written on phones in a post on her website.

“Be sure to take the extra few minutes to read over your email before you hit ‘send.’ If spell check is not turned on, refer to the email settings on your mobile device to activate this feature. Auto spell check can also be dangerous, especially if you aren’t taking that extra minute to re-read your response,” she writes. “Typing ‘to’ when you meant to type ‘do’ can completely change the meaning of your message. And that’s a best case auto-correct scenario!”

Remember to caution others that you’re typing on your phone the right way

Jillian Kumagai (now a web producer at ProPublica), previously wrote on Mashable’s site about how when emailing on mobile, you should “change your signature as you see fit.”

“Avoid looking tacky by omitting the mobile signature that reads, ‘Sent from my iPhone’ or ‘Sent from my Android.’ It’s really easy to change your signature in the Gmail app. Consider creating the generic signature (name, company, contact information) for your phone if you send many emails for business purposes,” she writes. “If you know you’re prone to typos on your phone, consider including a message apologizing for mobile typos.”

We get it: Accidents happen. Typos are almost impossible to avoid, but that’s why you should be extra careful when typing a business message on your phone.

Jane Burnett|is a reporter for Ladders and can be reached at jburnett@theladders.com.