One of my favorite things about being a mom is watching my kids grow and express themselves. Today part of that expression is tied to their tech toys. I remember how excited my son was when he got his very own cell phone. It was blue and it was the first sign of his independence.
My son is not alone. For tweens and teens cell phones rule! Their devotion to mobile technology continues to increase with each passing year. As these young techies go mobile, they find that “third screen” time is merging with or even replacing computer and TV time. And the “third screen” goes with them wherever they go.
According to Kaiser Family Foundation research from 2010, most kids get a mobile phone around the time they start middle school. Text messaging reigns among mobile t(w)eens and is by far the most popular way that teens reach their friends, beyond talking face-to-face, email, instant messaging and voice calling.
Mobile provides a whole new way to communicate, learn and interact with their favorite content. So why are mobile devices being banned in most schools?
Many schools, including those in New York City, are banning cell phones, so kids have to keep their cell phone shut off during most of the day. At least there is the bus/car/subway ride home to make up for lost time.
Unlimited texting plan, please
The average American teen sends and receives 50 or more messages per day, or 1,500 per month.
More than 31% of teens send and receive over 100 messages per day… that’s over 3,000 messages a month
SMS insights from the Pew Report that made me LOL
“My mom, she’s old school too, but she loves texting. But the only reason why I don’t text her is because I do the up-and-down letter-thingy, where you have capital words.” Ah yes, texting has it’s own rules and kids are not willing to bend them. Deal with it, mom!
How teens use their phones besides texting and talking
- 83% use their phones to take pictures
- 60% play music on their phones
- 46% play games on their phones
- 32% exchange videos on their phones
- 27% go online on their phones
- 23% access social networking sites
Mobile apps like Facebook, Pandora and YouTube are growing in popularity as more kids get smart phones. Surfing the mobile web has topped mobile gaming (meaning pre-installed) based on the 2010 data.
Summary: Most T(w)eens use their mobile phone to text, take photos, share, play games, listen to music and watch videos.
Over the past five years, the kids between eight and 18 who own their own cell phone has nearly doubled. Current estimates show that roughly 66 percent of kids from eight to 18 own a cell phone. (Source: Pew Internet, FOSI 2010)