Almost every child under 4 years old has used mobile technology
A study in the United States has revealed that virtually every toddler has been exposed to these devices.
The results of a new study have now revealed that four year old American children have nearly all used mobile technology such as smartphones and tablets at some point in their lives.
These outcomes led researchers to say that families are in urgent need of proper usage guidelines.
The study identified what they called a “digital divide” that ran as recently as 2013 in which there has been a kind of difference in the ownership of tablets among various income groups. The researchers used this most recent study to help to decide whether or not that gap was continuing to exist and, if so, to determine to what degree the difference in mobile technology access was persisting among the different income groups. In order to do this, researchers conducted a survey of the parents of 350 children aged six months to four years old.
The mobile technology study was conducted by researchers from Einstein Medical Center in Philadelphia.
The report on the study was published in the Pediatrics journal. Leading the study was Dr. Hilda Kabali. At the moment, the publisher of the journal, the American Academy of Pediatrics, is recommending that parents eliminate any use of mobile screens among children younger than the age of two. The reason is that there are concerns with regards to the potential impact of these device in delaying a child’s learning of language.
By the age of two years, the majority of the children in the study were already using smartphones or tablets and the researchers found that these kids were spending a large amount of time in front of television and mobile device screens. For instance, the average daily screen time for a two year old was determined to be 44 minutes. That said, the average amount of time that children spent watching shows or videos on mobile devices was 29 minutes. Moreover, the average child in that age group also spent a daily 20 minutes using apps.
By the age of four years, 97 percent of children had used a mobile device. The researchers say that this reveals a decrease in the digital gap and have said that the decreasing cost of mobile technology as well as entertainment apps and popular streaming sites help to explain this trend.