Smartphones, Kids & Parents

I saw a link on Twitter today to a study done by Nielsen looking at kids and smartphones. The study looked at the average age at which kids first received a smart phone, why parents purchase a smart phone for their child and the concerns parents have.  It’s pretty interesting to see the responses and then, as parents and those who work with students, think through how that impacts the students with which we work.

Here a few highlights from study:

  • The most predominant age when kids got a service plan was age 10 (22%)
  • 45% of mobile kids got a service plan at 10-12 years old
  • Among parents likely to get their kids wireless service before they turn 13, being able to get hold of their child easily and that their child can reach out to them easily were top reasons (90%)
  • 72% of parents were concerned that smartphones pose too much distraction

It’s an interesting article for parents whose children have a smart phone and for parents who have the issue coming in the future.  The article shares other stats and infographics as well.

You can read the entire article on the Nielsen website.

So…how old were your kids when they got their first smart phone?

How old do you think a child should be to manage a smart phone?

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Nomophobia – do you have it?

I learned a new phrase this weekend – nomophobia.  It stands for no-mobile-phobia – the fear of going without your phone.

Just tonight before our small groups started, one of our guys got out his phone, accidentally dropped it and cracked his screen. He was upset because he just had his phone fixed a few weeks ago.  I’ve seen phones that have multiple cracks throughout the screen (kind of looks like a bunch of spider webs).  Rather than get the phone fixed, people continue to use them because they don’t want to be without it.

Last week one of our junior high girls was stressing out a little bit – her iPhone was on 4% battery.  She was afraid she wouldn’t make it home before it died.

I have to admit I have had a touch of nomophobia.  My son dropped my phone at the doctor’s office and cracked the case enough where the SIM card wouldn’t read. So, I couldn’t send texts or receive phone calls for a while.  I have to admit I was a little concerned.  I mean, what important call or text might I miss out on that afternoon?  Scary stuff!

That’s what the infograph shows below, based on a study done in the UK. Check to see if someone you know (or maybe even you) suffer from nomophobia.  Interesting stats.

This infograph was posted on the Youth Ministry Media website.

 

surviving-without-smartphone-infographic

Instagram Fastest Growing App in ’13

instagramLast week I posted about how Facebook may not be dying in the world of social media. While people are using Twitter and other social media tools, Facebook still has a strong presence.

Then, last week, I saw this article on MediaPost.com informing us that Instagram was the fastest growing app in 2013. Twitter, which has 30.7 million users, was the 10th fastest growing.  It seems that people prefer posting images over words with an average of 103.4 million unique visitors on IG last year.

It can be a challenge trying to keep up with the various ways people, including our own children and student in our churches, communicate with each other.  I think it is interesting to see what apps are not only popular, but continue to be used over the course of time.

Here is the full article posted on MediaPost.com.

Facebook was the No. 1 app overall in 2013, but its photo-sharing subsidiary Instagram was the fastest-growing app among the top 10.

With an average of 103.4 million unique visitors last year between January and October, Facebook had easily the largest U.S. audience of any app, with traffic up 27% from 2012. But that growth rate paled in comparison to Instagram — acquired by the social network in 2012 for $1 billion — which saw its app audience surge 66% to 32 million last year, according to Nielsen data.

That’s partly a result of starting from a smaller base, but the comparison with Facebook won’t do anything to dispel the growing perception that the growth in social media — especially among teens — is shifting to single-purpose or messaging apps, including Instagram, Snapchat, Whatsapp, Whisper and others.

Instagram also outpaced Twitter, the No. 10 app that grew 36% to 30.7 million last year. How Instagram’s growth translates into ad sales should start to become clear this year, with advertising in the app just launched at the end of 2013. In a recent research note, JPMorgan analyst Doug Anmuth suggested, however, that advertising will continue to roll out slowly on Instagram this year, not contributing significantly to Facebook’s overall revenue.

Close on Instagram’s heels in terms of growth was Apple’s Maps app (No. 8), which increased its audience 64% to nearly 32 million. That gain highlights Apple’s success in luring back irate users after its disastrous launch in iOS 6 in 2012. That isn’t to say it can match the cross-platform reach of Google Maps, which last year boasted 68.6 million uniques, reflecting 14% growth.

Indeed, Google apps — which also include Search, Play YouTube and Gmail — made up half the top 10 apps in 2013, pointing to the ubiquity of the Android OS. The Google platform ran on more than half (52%) of U.S. smartphones in November, according to the latest market share data from comScore.

The increase in mobile adoption overall drove down desktop traffic in 2013 compared to the prior year for each of the top 10 Web sites, according to Nielsen. Google — the No. 1 site, with an average online audience of 164.8 million last year — saw traffic drop 6%, while Facebook’s fell 16% to 135 million, and Yahoo’s 9% to 129.8 million.

Among the top 10, the Ask Search Network suffered the biggest decline, falling 16% to 64.2 million. YouTube, the top video site in 2013, also saw a dip in its audience — slipping 6% from 2012 to 128.4 million, but still far ahead of No. 2 Vevo, with 37.2 million, down 9%. No. 3 video property Yahoo saw traffic fall 8% to 35.4 million.

How Teens Use Cell Phones

Youth Ministry Media shares infographics about teenagers and technology.  The recent posting, Teens Cell Phone Usage, provides some interesting information.

A few things I noticed:

1) 75% of 12-17 year olds have a cell phone

2) Teens send/receive 2,108 texts a month (wonder how that stacks up against youth workers?)

3) 70% received a text from someone not in their contacts.

There is some good info for parents, too.  I am a big fan of texting as a tool to stay in touch with both teens and adults.  Good to see how it is being used and also to be aware of how we need to be cautious.

teens-cellphone-usage

Apps Gone Bad

facebookKind of ironic to me that literally 10 minutes or so after I posted about Guardrails, I saw a tweet with a link to an article about a new App on Facebook.

The App is called “Bang With Friends” and yes, it is what it sounds like. Here is a description of how it works (please excuse the crude way it describes what was intended to be an intimate act between a husband and wife:

“You install the app, then the app lists your Facebook friends of the opposite sex. You click if you’d like to “bang” them, and no one ever knows . . . that is, unless one of those friends installed the app and elected to bang you, too. Bang With Friends makes finding a mate as easy as window shopping on Pinterest.”

Here’s a link to the entire article where a gentleman (with his wife’s permission) tested the app.

So, if you were ever wondering if guardrails were important, just look at this app. Wow!