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Digital Natives Still Spend More Time with Traditional Media

Traditional TV is still the primary media device for kids and teens

August 31, 2015 | Demographics | Media Buying

Kids today may be digital natives, but Tv is still their most common media usage device in a typical week.

Primary Device Used by US Child/Teen Internet Users to View Media/Content, by Age, June 2015 (% of respondents in each group)

According to June 2015 polling by PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC), traditional TV sets are the primary device used by 24% of children and teens in the US to consume content. The younger kids were, the more likely they were to have traditional TV as their top device. Among those ages 8 to 11, for example, 31% were more likely to use old-school televisions than any other device.

Looking only at older kids ages 15 to 18, digital won out, with laptops or other PCs most likely to be named the No. 1 device, ahead of TVs by 5 percentage points. Certain other digital devices, though, were actually in wider use among younger kids. Tablets, for example, were twice as likely to be the primary device of 8- to 11-year-olds than they were of 15- to 18-year-olds.

TV was also where, according to another survey, kids were most likely to increase media time over the summer, along with movies.

Media Consumption of US Children/Teens During the Summer* According to Their Parents, by Type, June 2015 (% of respondents)

According to The Harris Poll, kids are more likely to get their own TV at a young age than newer digital devices, and most under-18s still don’t have their own PCs. A slight majority have their own mobile phone, but most don’t receive on until after age 12.

eMarketer estimates that 50.6% of the Us population under 12 will use the internet at least monthly this year, as will 97.0% of those ages 12 to 17. Among the younger population, 22.0% will use a mobile phone at least monthly this year, and 35.3% of that subgroup will use a smartphone specifically. Among teens ages 12 to 17, 88.0% will be mobile phone users, and 78.5% of those will be smartphone users. When it comes to tablets, we estimate that 32.2% of the population ages 0 to 11 will use one this year, vs. 62.1% of 12- to 17-year-olds.

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