Children's screen time has doubled since 1995

A new report reveals that children are spending significantly more time in front of a screen compared to 20 years ago. Connected Kids, a study by research firm Childwise, indicates that children aged 5-16 now spend six and a half hours a day using internet connected devices and watching TV.

In fact, according to the report, today's children are glued to a screen more than twice as much as those in 1995. It's teenage boys that currently have the most screen-time, spending an average of eight hours playing games consoles and using smartphones, tablets and computers.

Another finding is that children now use multiple screens at the same time, choosing to watch TV while browsing the net or using social networks such Facebook and Snapchat on mobile devices.

Viewing habits have also changed among young teens, as the rise of catch-up services and on-demand content replaces the traditional TV set. YouTube remains the most popular video on demand service with more than 50% of the 2,000 children surveyed saying they have accessed content on the site during the last 18 months.

In contrast, the number of younger viewers watching BBC One and ITV has declined during the last two decades. Eighty per cent of 7-16 years olds watched the channels in 1995 but only forty per cent do so now as the transition to digital continues.

Childwise research executive, Matthew Nevard said: "The internet is pivotal to their lives and they are now able to access a wealth of content. They can find the content that they want."

The research also predicts that children will embrace wearable tech such as smart-watches and virtual reality headsets during the next ten years.

Source: BBC News

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