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Kids And Their (Digital) Toys

I recently read an article titled 38 percent of kids under 2 use smartphones or tablets. I couldn’t pass this headline up as I have two children, 10 and under, and only 1 tablet to go around.

It’s OK though. The kids keep me in the loop about what apps have updated and let me know when they’ve found new Wi-Fi network names when we’re out and about, so it’s a “win-win” for everybody.

The article referenced key findings from  a 2013 Common Sense Media Research Study and,whether you have children or not, the usage figures are interesting.

  • The percent of children with access to some type of “smart” mobile device at home (e.g., smartphone, tablet) has jumped from half (52%) to three-quarters (75%) of all children in just two years.
Hanalei: a real Digital Native on the iPad

(Photo credit: Wayan Vota)

  • Today, 38% of children under 2 have used a mobile device for media (compared to 10% two years ago) and the percent of children who use mobile devices on a daily basis – at least once a day or more – has more than doubled, from 8% to 17% .

So how is this mobile device usage affecting TV watching?

  • Time spent with “traditional” screen media such as television, DVDs, video games, and computers is down substantially, by more than half an hour a day.
  • Television still dominates children’s media time, but new ways of watching now make up a large portion of viewing.
  • Television continues to be the most widely used platform for children’s educational content (Good news for PBS, Nick and Cartoon Network).

As you can imagine, economics affects mobile device ownership.

  • Access to mobile media devices and applications among poor and minority children is much higher than it was two years ago, but a large gap between rich and poor still persists.

Fortunately, the same study finds that reading is still popular with children.

iPad magic

(Photo credit: robynejay)

  • To date, the spread of mobile media devices like smartphones, e-readers, and tablets does not appear to have had a net effect on the amount or frequency of reading among young children.

I highly recommend you reading the study for yourself and if you have trouble accessing it using a mobile device, just ask the nearest kid to stop playing Minecraft long enough to pull up the article for you.

About the Author

PaulBauer

Paul Bauer

Account Executive

Paul has been with Linkmedia 360 since 2001. He has vast experience with dealer accounts. Paul beat level 3 of Angry Birds on Monday is now stuck on level 4.

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