Yesterday Childwise delivered findings from their monitor report. The monitor report shows the findings from Childwise’s annual tracker survey, first established in the mid-1990s. The survey posts questions for 5-16 year olds around their media consumption and behaviour, purchasing habits, and social issues. Over 2,000 kids in this age range complete the online survey each year.
In previous reports it has become apparent that TV viewing amongst kids has been in steady decline, however until this point time spent online has always remained below this. Now, on average kids aged 7-16 are spending 3 hours online a day (up 50% from last year), increasing to nearer 5 hours amongst 15-16 year olds. This compares to 2.1 hours spent watching TV.
Undoubtedly, this rise in internet use is somewhat down to the fact that the ownership of tablets amongst kids has risen by 50% since the last report, with 67% of youngsters now claiming to own one of these devices – seeing tablet use overtake that of other types of computers.
This move away from TV viewing is skewed towards older kids, with less than a quarter of 15-16 year olds saying that they typically watch TV; younger kids still prefer to watch TV, when possible, on the TV set.
However, regardless of age and preference you can’t deny that TV viewing has become fragmented across various devices. Simon Leggett, Director of Research at Childwise has said “TV viewing has been redefined…Children are now seeking out the content of their choice. They still find traditional TV programmes engaging but are increasingly watching them online and on-demand or binge watching box sets.”
Two things that have had a big impact on increased internet use amongst kids is Video On Demand (VOD) and YouTube:
A key reason to the increase in kids using the internet is that they are turning to VOD services to watch programmes as opposed to viewing live content on conventional TV channels. The VOD service used most by kids is *Netlfix, being more popular than TV specific services (BBC iPlayer, ITV player etc.)
YouTube is often the primary destination for kids when they go online, and this is the case across all the ages with almost half of the sample visiting the video-sharing website at least once a day. Kids are accessing the platform to watch music videos, “funny content”, gaming videos, vlogs, TV programmes, or “how to” videos.
Previous research Giraffe Insights have completed has suggested that more and more children are using multiple devices to view their favourite content whenever and wherever they want. However, particularly for the younger children, TV has remained the anchor within the home and a place where the whole family can come together.
To read more on the report please visit the following articles:
*Please note that YouTube is not considered to be a VOD service for the purposes of this research, even though children can watch full programmes via this means.