According to the second annual Halifax Insurance Digital Home Index, a study offered by banking chain Halifax, one-third of 7 to 8-year-olds, two-thirds of 9 to 11-year-olds, and nearly nine in ten of 12 to 14-year-olds now own a mobile phone.
However, 60 percent of parents feel that the amount of time children spend using technology is impacting on time spent with family and friends, reports a website.
The study found that today’s children each own an average of 924 pounds worth of electronic devices, and a third check their phone for messages several times an hour. Two-thirds of children even admit to using their devices in bed, including mobile phones and tablets, raising concerns that youngsters are finding it difficult to switch off.
This behaviour is causing a shift in family dynamics, as over a third of children are even using technology to communicate with family members while under the same roof, and a third of parents and their children confess to using technology devices at the dinner table.
However, 30 percent of children claim their parents’ technology usage sets a bad example to them, with weary parents spending an average of three hours a day watching television and 68 percent using their technology devices whilst with their kids.
“Modern technology is part of contemporary life and naturally this is reflected in the way families operate. However, it is becoming clear that a number of children and young people use technology excessively,” said Kairen Cullen, Chartered Educational Psychologist.