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19th May 2010 - While volcanic ash continues to cause travel chaos, research highlights some of the more banal annoyances that commuters deal with day to day. A sidebar to a wider study, to be released next month, the findings may not take your mind off whether your flight will be cancelled last minute due to volcanic action - but it lends some entertaining commuter trivia to distract you while you wait at the airport:

• The single most irritating thing about commuting is people who smell. Scottish commuters are most bothered by it. And women find it more offensive than men.

• People talking loudly on their mobile phones was a close second with over half of those surveyed finding this annoying. Commuters in Leeds and Newcastle are the chattiest, with one in four admitting to calling people during their commute to work.

• Almost half of commuters surveyed listen to other people’s conversations. Over half read newspapers, text messages, books and confidential work documents over passengers’ shoulders.

• Surprisingly, women are LESS tolerant of children and babies than men - and are more likely to read a book, text and play mobile games. Men prefer crosswords, listening to music or simply do nothing.

• Mobile gaming is stealing time from traditional books and newspapers with over a quarter of Brits aged 16-24 playing games on a mobile device to pass the time on journeys. That’s compared to just 11% ten years ago.

• London commuters finding slow-moving crowds the most irritating – four times more annoying than those in Sheffield.

• While many commuters are content to chat on the phone, just 7% are willing to chat to fellow commuters. Those who believe that it’s friendlier “up North” are proved wrong – people in Sheffield, Leeds and Liverpool are just as unlikely to engage in conversation as those in London. Bristol and Cardiff commuters are most willing to chat.

And if you are still looking for further distraction, you can log onto to play for free. With games said to help relieve stress and aid mental cognition, it could be time well spent.

- ENDS -

Notes to editors


1,564 UK adults were surveyed. They all resided in Great Britain and were aged 18+

PopCap Games ( is the leading multi-platform provider of casual video games: fun, easy-to-learn, captivating games that appeal to everyone from age 6 to 106 and are available anytime, anywhere. Based in Seattle, Washington, PopCap was founded in 2000 and has a worldwide staff of more than 275 people in Seattle, San Francisco, Chicago, Vancouver, B.C., Dublin, Seoul, and Shanghai. Its games have been downloaded over 1.5 billion times by consumers worldwide, and its flagship title, Bejeweled, has sold more than 50 million units across all platforms. Constantly acclaimed by consumers and critics, PopCap’s games are played on the Web, social platforms, desktop computers, myriad mobile devices (cell phones, smartphones, PDAs, Pocket PCs, iPod, iPhone, iPad and more), popular game consoles (such as Xbox and DS), and in-flight entertainment systems. PopCap has been one of the most innovative companies in the video industry since its inception a decade ago. Pioneering new game mechanics, sales models, and platforms ranging from mobile devices to online and location-based games of chance, PopCap is the only video game provider in the world with leading market share across the entire spectrum.

PR Contact:

Cathy Orr

Ember Wardrop

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