Posts Tagged ‘iphone’

52% of kids under 8 using iPods, iPads and mobile devices

October 27th, 2011

Need a babysitter? There’s an app for that. A study published this week says a huge percentage of children under the age of eight are consuming media on iPods, iPads and other devices at growing rates.

A study published by Common Sense Media, a nonprofit group that studies children’s use of technology, says digital media has become a regular part of a child’s life and mobile devices are the toy of choice.

More than half (52%) of all children under the age of eight have access to mobile devices at home including smartphones, iPads, iPods and other tablets. And the rate at which kids are adopting technology is also perhaps surprising: 40 percent of 2- to 4-year-olds are using everything from TV to mobile devices and apps.

According to the study, 11 percent of all kids up to 8-years-old regularly use a cellphone, iPod, iPad or similar device and spend an average of 43 minutes doing so. Parents seem to be supporting the digital babysitters, as more than a quarter (29%) of all parents have downloaded mobile apps for their kids to use.

“Much of the focus in recent years has been on the explosion of media use among teenagers, whereas our study examines media use among young children during crucial developmental years,” said James Steyer, CEO and founder of Common Sense Media, in a media release. “Last week, the American Academy of Pediatrics reaffirmed their position that children under age 2 should not engage in any screen time, yet the data shows infants and toddlers are growing up surrounded by screens. This use data is an important first step toward understanding how the prevalence of media and technology affects the development of our youngest kids.”

Among the key findings of the study:

  • 42 percent of children under eight years of age have a TV in their bedrooms (30 percent of 0- to 1-year-olds, 44 percent of 2- to 4-year-olds, and 47 percent of 5- to 8-year-olds).
  • Half (52%) of all 0- to 8-year-olds have access to a new mobile device such as a smartphone, video iPod, or iPad/tablet.
  • More than a third (38%) of children this age have used one of these devices, including 10% of 0- to 1-year-olds, 39% of 2- to 4-year-olds, and more than half (52%) of 5- to 8-year-olds.
  • In a typical day, one in 10 (11%) 0- to 8-year-olds uses a smartphone, video iPod, iPad, or similar device to play games, watch videos, or use other apps. Those who do such activities spend an average of 43 minutes a day doing so.

While new technologies are starting to get the attention of both parents and tots, the study says TV continues to be the dominant medium and kids 8-years-old and under consume an average of 1:40 of TV or DVDs in a typical day.

Children also spend 29 minutes daily reading or being read to; 29 minutes each day listening to music; 17 minutes per day using a computer; 14 minutes daily using a video came console; and five minutes using a cellphone, iPod, iPad or similar device.

According to the study, infants between 0-1 years of age spend double the amount of time watching TV and DVDs than reading. Some children are also multitasking, as nearly one quarter (23%) of 5- to 8-year-olds use more than one device at a time.

“These results make it clear that media plays a large and growing role in children’s lives, even the youngest of children,” said Vicky Rideout, a senior adviser to Common Sense Media and director of more than 30 previous studies on children, media and health. “As we grapple with issues such as the achievement gap and childhood obesity, educators, policymakers, parents, and public health leaders need access to comprehensive and credible research data to inform their efforts.”

The study, “Zero to Eight: Children’s Media Use in America,” is based on a survey of 1,384 parents of children up to 8 years old, and was conducted May 27-June 15, 2011. The full study can be downloaded free here (opens in PDF).

[Originally published on Digital Journal]

Facebook launches dedicated app for messaging on Android, iPhone

August 9th, 2011

Facebook has announced a stand-alone mobile app called Messenger. The new app allows users to send messages to friends or groups of people, positioning the company to compete more directly with traditional email and group-messaging services.

Note: Scroll down to see screenshots of the app

Facebook Messenger launches today and apps will be available for iPhone or Android. The new app allows users to send messages to their friends on Facebook, or by SMS to mobile phones. Users can send messages to one person or a group of people and attach photos and location data along with their message.

Messenger works just like the existing Facebook Messages, only it will be a separate application on mobile phones. Facebook says a large portion of its users send messages from the company’s iPhone and Android apps, as well as from Facebook’s mobile website, so it saw an opportunity to pull out a feature that is widely used and launch it as a stand-alone entity.

How it works

Users launch the application and can type messages to friends, similar to sending an email or the way current messages work on Facebook. The app pulls your friends list from Facebook, and you can also add mobile phone numbers and send to people who are not on Facebook. The app is designed to function like an instant message service so messages can be sent quickly and easily to anyone.

When someone replies to the message, everyone else receives a copy of the reply. If your recipient is not on Facebook, you can provide a mobile number and the message will be delivered as a text message. The recipient is notified who else is in the conversation, and in the event a recipient wishes to opt out of a conversation, he or she can simply reply “mute” and Facebook will stop sending replies.

Launching a stand-alone app

While group messaging is not new to Facebook, the strategy of pulling out one feature and launching it as a stand-alone app is a step in a new direction for the company. Facebook says Messenger was built from the ground up by the same people who developed Beluga, a company Facebook acquired in March. Messenger incorporates a lot of the learning and features from that company.

“At the end of the day, messaging is different than any other part of the Facebook mobile experience,” Peter Deng, Director of Product, said in a phone interview. “It’s one of those things you need really quick access to. “Messages are sent instantaneously and the app feels really fast. We’ve removed a bunch of clicks and made it a separate application for speed.”

Deng says Messenger was born from looking at Facebook data and seeing how people use its applications. “An astounding amount of Facebook messages are sent via Facebook mobile right now,” said Deng. “It was surprising to us to see how many people use iPhone, Android and [our mobile site] to send messages.”

Web-mobile integration & features

The mobile experience is heavily embedded into the Web experience, so whenever a message is sent via Messenger, it’s also added to the user’s Facebook Messages inbox. This allows users to have a single copy of conversations no matter what device they use.

Facebook says Messenger gives users added functionality above what traditional text messaging offers, letting anyone opt-out of a conversation that isn’t of interest.

Deng says Messenger can be especially useful when you’re planning an event and you need to quickly put together a conversation with people who are attending, be it a ski trip, a bachelor party or dinner at a restaurant.”Mobile messaging has been one-to-one traditionally,” said Deng. “But now you can attach a location with a message that will only be visible to people you send message to.

“Location data is pulled from GPS so recipients can view a map and see your location.With the launch of a separate messaging app, there are questions around how it could impact usage within Facebook’s existing app, but Deng said the company is not concerned.

“We expect people to use the Facebook app exactly how they’re using it today,” said Deng. “It’s the same system in the Facebook app but the separate app has a few extra features. The conversation between you and friends will be accessible everywhere you go and we don’t expect too big of a change in usage in the Facebook app.”

Deng said the company will continue to watch how people use its applications and iterate as it gets more feedback about what its users’ needs are.

“Right now, we focused on sending and receiving quickly and keeping the user interface simple and minimal,” said Deng. “We as Facebook just want to get out of the way.”

Messenger will launch on iPhone and Android in Canada and the United States today. Apps will be made available in other geographies in the coming weeks.

Study: iPad users spend more time consuming news than iPhone users

October 21st, 2010

Photo by

By Chris Hogg

A study released today from Nielsen shows news and music are the most popular types of content consumed on the iPad. According to the study of “internet connected devices,” users spend ore time per session with news and music than users on the iPhone.

The survey of 5,000 consumers who own a tablet, eReader, netbook, media/games player or smartphone indicated 44 percent of iPad users say they access news content regularly. That is just behind the 53 percent who consume news regularly on their iPhone.

That said, it appears as though iPad users spend more time consuming news; the survey showed 26 percent of iPad users spend 31 minutes or more per weekday session consuming news, while only 7 percent of iPhone users  spend the same amount of time consuming news.

Some other key findings include:

  • iPad users are younger, and mostly male compared to other connected devices; 65 percent are male and 65 percent are under 35 years of age (Kindle users are 52 percent male, with 47 percent being under 35, according to Nielsen).
  • 46 percent of tablet users allow others to use their devices (only one-third of smartphone and eReader users do the same)

More people watch video and read magazines on the iPad compared to the iPhone:

Courtesy Nielsen

iPad users are also more receptive to advertising and more likely to make a purchase:

Courtesy Nielsen

Courtesy Nielsen

The summary of the survey can be found online here (opens in PDF)

Cross-posted to Future of Media

If you want to know how good the iPad is, ask a 2-year-old

April 6th, 2010

A lot of people are commenting about the new Apple iPad, its pros and cons, and whether or not it was designed well. You can read professional reviews from people like Walt Mossberg, browse through video reviews on YouTube, or opt for a different type of review – one from a toddler. Kids these days are often more savvy than their parents, but a lot can be said about good user-interface design if a two-year-old girl can figure out how to work the iPad.

In this post by Todd Lappin, he points out that his iPhone-savvy daughter was able to figure out how to scroll between screens and run apps.

What’s even more impressive is her ability to see the iPad’s potential as a video-display device and her criticism that it doesn’t come with a camera. She even goes as far as talking about its potential as a gaming device.

There were a few things she struggled with, however. As Lappin notes:

On the downside, she had the same frustration as many adults, where touching the screen-edge with your thumb while holding the iPad blocks input to all home screen icons. Notice also that she was confused by the splash page for FirstWords Animals, her favorite spelling game: Because the start button looked like a graphic, rather than a conventional button, she couldn’t figure out how to start the game.

Kids who grow up in the touchscreen world are clearly able to pick up gadgets like the iPad quickly, and it’s this ease of use Apple should be capitalizing on in advertising. Think about it: If the iPad is going to be a next-gen book reader, Apple should be showcasing its ease of use for older generations intimidated by this type of technology, as well as parents who think they’re just a waste of time.

After all, kids in tech ads worked for Microsoft.