Children as young as one in the US are using tablets for more than 20 minutes a day, while nearly all children under the age of 4 have used a mobile device such as a tablet or smartphone, a new study has found.
The study of 350 children in a low-income, minority community in the US suggests that an income-based “digital divide” is shrinking.
The study found that tablets are the most popular mobile devices for children, and kids as young as one use them for more than 20 minutes a day on average. For the study, researchers gave a questionnaire to parents of children between 6 months and 4 years of age who visited a Philadelphia paediatric clinic in October and November of 2014.
The parents answered questions about their children’s use of televisions, mobile devices, computers and video games. The study found that by the age of 4, about three-quarters of youngsters had their own mobile device, and half had their own TV. All but 3% had used a smartphone or tablet, the study found.
More than four out of 10 children under age one and 77% of 2-year-olds used a mobile device every day to play games, use apps or watch videos, the researchers found. Almost half of 4-year-olds and one-quarter of 2-year-olds needed no help using a smartphone or tablet.
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