The use of advanced technology in kids’ lives is growing, as even more families with kids have more smartphones and tablets than ever before.
According to a new report from The NPD Group, 71% of households in 2014 with a child between the ages of 4 and 14 own a smartphone, compared with 55% of household ownership in 2012. Ownership of tablets, meanwhile, doubled in the same period, growing from 21% in 2012 to 32% in 2014.
Among those families with kids, 35% said their child uses a smartphone (up from 21% in 2012) and 31% use tablets, up from 13% in 2012.
This does not mean, however, that more kids own smartphones or tablets. The ownership of cell phones (including smartphones and traditional cell phones) held steady at 19%.
Pricing topped the list of reasons why consumers bought a consumer electronic device from any retailer (and was of particular importance for those shopping at mass merchant stores). Sales support and services became increasingly important among shoppers at specialty retailers.
“Technology devices are as much staples for American families as traditional toys, perhaps more so considering their ability to engage with almost any member of the family,” said Juli Lennett, president of The NPD Group’s toys division, in a statement. “Marketing smartphones and tablets for family use, rather than the traditional primary user, and offering pricing and payment options to meet the needs of families, will engage this audience even further.”
Last week, advertising consultancy Communicus released its own research bowing that one third of pre-kindergarten age children in the United States have a tablet specifically used by them, and 18% ask their parents for smartphones. Apple is the preferred brand among the school-age set, with more than half of tweens and teens and 43% of pre-K kids specifically asking for iPhones.