For children and teenagers, it is increasingly all about mobile

Monitor Report 2017This year sees the resurgence of the mobile phone among five to 16 year olds, according to the latest 2017 CHILDWISE Monitor Report. Smartphones are now the default device for music, online access, gaming, video content and reading (after printed books), as young people seek endless entertainment - anywhere and everywhere.

The new data shows the extent to which the mobile phone now dominates children’s media experiences, with ownership increasing steadily – especially among primary aged children – and usage more varied than ever before. For the first time ever, children are now more likely to use their mobile phone to go online than for any other purpose, including texting or calling.

The 2017 CHILDWISE Monitor is a comprehensive annual report looking at five to 16 year olds media consumption, purchasing and social habits as well as key behaviour. Around 2000 children in schools across the United Kingdom completed in-depth online surveys for the report.

The report also reveals that tablet ownership has reached saturation point after years of rapid growth. Two thirds of children have their own touchscreen tablet at home.

Simon Leggett, research director from CHILDWISE says: “Our research suggests that children now expect to be constantly entertained. They want to fill every free moment they have. Tablets were a gateway to apps and the internet for many children – they were the technology of choice and widely endorsed by parents. Children now expect the same level of functionality when they’re out and about, and the mobile phone delivers that” says Simon.

“Children expect to access their favourite media at all times, whether it is games, music, video content or social media,” adds Simon Leggett. The report suggests that it is unlikely that tablet growth will increase much further, with two in three children now owning one.

“Tablets are not as portable as mobile phones and they don’t work ‘on the go’ as easily as a mobile phone. This is why we have seen a modest resurgence of the mobile phone, which children can have with them and use at all times to fill any moment of boredom with gaming, viewing YouTube videos, catching up with social media or listening to music.”

“The mobile phone is increasingly becoming a preferred go-to multimedia gadget for children overall. For primary aged children particularly, exposure to what a tablet can offer has left them wanting more, especially when they are outside the home.”

“Children are now becoming adept at the positive skills of multi-tasking, prioritising and filtering through the huge amount of content available to them. When they find something that interests them, they will engage fully.”

Most children say their use of technology helps them learn and develop new interests. However, a significant minority are concerned about their over reliance on them. Around one in four find it difficult to go several hours without checking them, say they have missed out on sleep because they have spent too long on gadgets and would like to spend more time away from them.

Three in 10 children say they have to check their connected devices every few minutes.

Most teenagers break rules set for them for internet use and a significant minority of nine to 12 year olds go online longer than they are allowed, or when they shouldn’t.

Findings of the report also include…

  • Children claim to use the internet for an average of three hours a day. One in eight say they spend more than six hours online per day.
  • Social networking sites are more popular than texting for children to keep in touch with one another outside school.
  • YouTube is the most popular website among children this year, far ahead of second place favourite Snapchat, and is the most popular video on demand service, ahead of second place Netflix - almost all children use YouTube.
  • Children are now just as likely to watch content on their mobile phone as on a TV set.
  • A quarter of nine to 16s turn off or get around safety controls when they go online.

CHILDWISE is an independent market research agency specialising in children and young people. CHILDWISE has a programme of published independent research and also conducts research for government agencies, charities, broadcasters, publishers and brands www.childwise.co.uk

The Monitor Report 2017 covers... Tablets and technology; websites and applications; gaming, YouTube; mobile phones; TV viewing; video on demand; music; reading; children’s equipment; money; purchasing; sports & activities; health & wellbeing and social awareness.

Written by E-safety Support on January 27, 2017 10:27

New CHILDWISE report reveals major shift in online behaviour

Major shift in UK children’s behaviour as time online overtakes time watching TV for first time ever, reveals new report.


Childwise Media Report 2016This year has seen a major shift in UK children’s media use with time spent online overtaking TV viewing for the first time ever, according to the latest 2016 CHILDWISE Monitor Report.

Tablet ownership also soared this year – up by 50% from last year. Just six years after the UK release of the iPad, tablets have swept into children’s lives, with two in three (67%) now having their own device.

The new data shows that YouTube has taken centre stage in children’s lives this year to become the place they turn to for entertainment, music, games, TV programmes, instruction and advice. Half use the site every day, almost all do so on occasion.

The majority of children who use YouTube visit the site to access music videos (58%). Around half of users keep themselves entertained with funny content on YouTube (52%). Around a third watch gaming content, vlogs/blogs, TV programmes or ‘how to’ videos.

Children are also going online more in their bedrooms. Three in four children (73%) can now access the internet in their room, up from two in three (63%) last year.

The 2016 CHILDWISE Monitor is a comprehensive annual report looking at five to 16-year-olds media consumption, purchasing and social habits as well as key behaviour. More than 2000 children in schools across the United Kingdom completed in-depth online surveys for the report.

“Growing access to the internet at any time and in any place, and a blurring of television content across channels and devices, brings a landmark change in behaviour this year. TV viewing has been redefined,” says Simon Leggett, Research Director from CHILDWISE.

“Children are now seeking out the content of their choice. They still find traditional TV programmes engaging but are increasingly watching them online and on-demand or binge watching box sets.”

This year, for the first time, tablet devices have overtaken laptops/PCs/netbooks as the main type of computer that children have in their homes. Four in five children (79%) now live in a house with a tablet device in it. This is a significant rise from just three in five (61%) last year.

Findings of the report also include...

  • Children age 5-16 now use the internet for an average of three hours a day and watch TV for 2.1 hours. It is worth noting that simply counting hours spent on devices can be problematic. Children multi task and often use more than one device at once and don’t always give each full attention.
  • 63% of children own their own mobile phone with an average monthly spend of £12.
  • Favourite internet vloggers
    Zoella, real name Zoe Sugg, is children’s favourite YouTuber, followed by TheDiamondMinecart, Thatcher Joe, KSI and Stampy.

    For the first time the CHILDWISE Monitor report asked children age 7 to 16 that used YouTube who their favourite YouTubers were or what were their favourite channels on the site.

    The YouTuber with the most mentions was fashion and beauty vlogger Zoella. She was a favourite among girls with 15% naming her as favourite and 8% naming her overall.

    TheDiamondMinecart, real name Daniel Middleton, posts daily videos about the popular game Minecraft. He was popular among boys, chosen by 6%, compared to 4% overall.

    Zoella’s boyfriend Alfie Deyes of PointlessBlog fame (named by 2% overall) and her brother Joe Sugg, known as Thatcher Joe (4%) are continuing favourites.

    “This is the year YouTube use has exploded among children with almost half (48%) using it every day and just 10% never using it,” says Simon

    “Around a third of children who use YouTube watch vlogs/blogs. Girls are much more likely to be interested in these than boys and viewing is highest for older children, peaking at half of 11-12 year olds.”

    However, the majority of children are passive consumers, rather than contributors to YouTube, rarely going beyond liking/disliking content or subscribing to channels. Only a minority ever post comments, share or upload videos.

    “Children of all ages, both boys and girls, find somebody to follow on YouTube who speaks directly to them and reflects their interests, coming across as authentic and unmediated,” Simon added.

    “For older girls, vloggers are filling the role previously held by magazines – somewhere to read about other people’s lives, problems, cringes, new ideas and fashion.”

    Boys of all ages enjoy FIFA football gaming commentary by vloggers such as Joe Weller and Miniminter. Younger boys like Minecraft gameplay vloggers such as TheDiamondMinecart, Stampy and iBallisticSquid. Older boys favour KSI

    CHILDWISE is an independent market research agency specialising in children and young people.

    The Monitor Report 2015-6 covers computers and the internet; websites and applications; gaming, YouTube; mobile phones; TV viewing; music; reading; cinema; children’s equipment; money; purchasing; sports & activities; health & wellbeing and social awarenes.

    Written by E-safety Support on February 24, 2016 14:56

    Internet to overshadow TV in the next 2 years

    New report predicts future technology trends among children and young people


    Childwise Conected KidsThe dominance of watching a television set as a childhood pastime is likely to end within the next two years - with youngsters likely to be spending more time online for the first time ever, according to the new CHILDWISE ‘Connected Kids’ report.

    Future generations of children are also more likely to watch content, such as TV programmes, on a tablet, or even a phablet (a tablet-style mobile phone) than they are a traditional television set, laptop or PC.

    Soon children will expect to stay connected at all times – everywhere and anywhere. This is likely to influence how willing they are to participate in trips out and family holidays.

    CHILDWISE’s ‘Connected Kids’ analyses 20 years of annual survey data from children and young people across the UK. It shows the progression of technologies, ownership and usage, and predicts how they might change into the future.

    “This is the first time we have analysed data from the last 20 years of the annual CHILDWISE Monitor surveys to predict the progression of technologies and their usage,” says CHILDWISE researcher Matthew Nevard.

    “This groundbreaking report uses the wealth of historic data we have on children’s media usage to identify trends and theorise how children’s media engagement is likely to develop over the next few year,” adds Matthew.

    CHILDWISE Trendlines future predictions

  • Tablet ownership will continue to increase, with the potential to reach similar levels to mobile ownership in the next few years.
  • Ownership of laptops and PCs is likely to fall.
  • Screen time will level out. As time spent using the internet and mobiles increases gradually, time spent watching television on a traditional set is declining. More on demand and binge viewing on tablets and laptops.
  • Decline in the proportion of children with TV sets in their bedroom, from around 80% of 7-16s in 2004 to 60% in 2014. Children and young people can now watch content in their own room on other devices, such as laptops and tablets. This trend is set to continue over the next few years.
  • Children will expect to be able to access the internet anywhere and everywhere - ability to access their online lives may even influence their willingness to participate in family holidays and trips out.
  • The use of portable devices makes it more difficult for parents to regulate what their children are accessing on the internet. Therefore, protecting children from inappropriate content online is set to be a continuing issue going forward.
  • For the first time children could spend more hours online than watching television. The wealth of content available online and popularity of YouTube is drawing young people to the internet over linear TV viewing.
  • Traditional social networks to decline steadily in popularity with photo and video sharing sites increasingly coming out as favourites among young people.
  • Mobiles to become a ‘hub’ device, used to coordinate a variety of other technological devices. It is likely that children and young people will use their mobiles to interact with the television, either indirectly through second-screen viewing or as a controller.
  • Apps such as YouTube, Instagram and Snapchat to continue to be popular. Facebook is still widely used but its popularity is declining in favour of newer experiences.
  • In the next two years

    Children’s internet use is likely to overshadow the television. TV viewing on traditional sets continues to decline at a steady rate, whilst hours spent online will increase. Children expect to choose the content they engage with and on-demand services like Netflix will be the norm.

    In the next five years

    Likely convergence of technology currently in use. Some children may choose ‘phablets’ (tablet-like phones) instead of the current popular combination of phone and tablet/laptop. Televisions likely to be increasingly internet-connected, allowing streaming of content from portable devices to the big screen. Cloud technology means children will expect to access their files and information anywhere and on any device.

    In the next 10 years

    Children growing up will have little understanding of a world without the internet. Having appliances which cannot be controlled using a smartphone or some kind of online dashboard may be seen as outdated, or at least increasingly rare. Wearable technology likely to have progressed significantly by this point.

    The CHILDWISE Monitor survey is a comprehensive annual research study with children and young people across the UK. The study looks at children’s media consumption and purchasing behaviour, and at aspects of their wider life.

    Written by E-safety Support on October 29, 2015 10:51


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