Children aged 10 to 13 are now spending more time online than watching TV.
Children aged 10 to 13 are now spending more time online than watching TV.

Kids spend more time online than playing with friends

CHILDREN aged 10 to 13 are now spending more time online than watching television or playing with their friends, according to research released today.

Four years ago, in an average week, 10-13 year-olds spent almost 15.5 hours watching TV and 12 hours playing with or talking to friends, with the internet taking up 639 minutes (10.65 hours) of their time.

But kids this age now spend 819 minutes (13.65 hours) per week using the internet, whether at home, school or elsewhere-exactly three hours more than their peers did in 2010.

The study by Roy Morgan Research found these kids now spend over three hours less in front of the box and an hour less socialising with friends, making the internet their number one pastime.

The research involved a sample of more than 1500 people in June this year.

Ten to 13 year-olds now spend more time playing computer, electronic or console games (346 minutes/week, up 29) than sport (321, down 32).

But there's hope for our 2060 Nobel chances-they now spent more time doing homework (226 minutes/week, up 10) than watching DVDs (208, down 109).

Among younger Australians aged 6 to 9, watching TV and playing with or talking to friends remain clearly the top two activities, although both have declined since 2010.

Back in the halcyon days of 2010, 6-9 year-olds spent about as much time during the week playing sport as using the internet; but today's youngsters spend almost two hours more on the net than on the field.

Tim Martin, general manager - media, Roy Morgan Research, says: "It is a milestone in our changing media landscape that the internet has overtaken television among 10-13 year-olds as the channel they spend more time using.''

"Kids these days are an extremely influential group. Not only do they spend their own money but they influence their parents' purchasing decisions across a range of household products.

"While it is of course vital for kid-focused businesses to understand today's media habits of their target market, further analysis of these results could also deliver projected insights into the attitudes and behaviours of older teens and young adults beyond 2020.

"Of course, not all kids are the same, and some spend much more time than others on every kind of medium.

"Some of this is understandable based on their parents' values and behaviours, but a lot is dependent on the kids themselves - their interests, preferences and activities.

"These are just some of the insights from the Young Australians Survey from Roy Morgan Research, which tracks the opinions, attitudes, behaviours, device usage and media consumption of kids aged 6-13 across Australia."

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