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Nearly all teens in Germany own some kind of mobile phone, according to a November 2015 study by Medienpädagogischer Forschungsverbund Südwest (MPFS). Basic mobile ownership is almost identical for males and females, but a deeper look into the survey’s responses reveals some gender divides when it comes to other digital devices.
Male teens were significantly more likely to own fixed game consoles, for example, at 63% vs. 36% of female teens. However, 52% of female teens own portable game consoles, while 49% male teens do, which goes a long way to dispelling the myth that females are uninterested in gaming—they simply want to do so on less traditional platforms.
Another gender disparity in device ownership is digital cameras: 58% of female teens own them, while only 37% of male teens do. Most other figures are fairly close, suggesting that teens in Germany are, for the most part, interested at the same levels in the same types of devices. So what do teens do with those devices?
It’s no surprise that over 90% of both female and male teens use their feature or smartphone, nor that over 90% access the internet. And, given the disparity in device ownership mentioned above, the nearly 20-percentage-point gap between female and male teens who like to take photos (at least, with devices other than a phone) is, again, not much of a shock. But one activity does stand out: While 45% of female teens read books, only 27% of teen males do. And while not many female teens read ebooks (8%), even fewer male teens do (3%). Curiously, however, 19% of male teen respondents said they read both newspapers and periodicals digitally, while female teens responded with 11% and 10%, respectively. It can't be doubted: German teens are plugged in.
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