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Children Love Surfing More Than Pets

Posted: 26th Sep, 2005 By: MarkJ
UK ten year olds enjoy going online more than playing with pets, shopping, going to the cinema, texting friends and even having a lie-in. Their mastery of the Internet means they are often called on by their parents to provide IT support at home, according to a new study by AOL:

More than 500 ten year olds took part in the nationwide ‘Now We Are Ten’ study to mark AOL UK’s 10th birthday this Autumn. The study reveals the online habits of the first generation to be born in the Internet era, and was conducted by Quaestor Research & Marketing Strategists.

Key findings of AOL’s ‘Now We Are Ten’ study are below:

* Despite more than three quarters of ten year olds having access to a PC at home (76 per cent), they have by no means abandoned the great outdoors for the mouse:

- ‘Going on the computer’ and ‘Going on the Internet’ do not yet feature in their top five pastimes.

- ‘Playing out’ and ‘Watching TV’ are the favourites, both cited by over half of ten year olds (54 per cent).

- ‘Playing sports’ and ‘Playing computer games’ follow, each receiving 41 per cent of the vote.

- ‘Going to friends’ houses’ (31 per cent), ‘Playing on bikes’ (27 per cent) and ‘Going swimming’ (25 per cent) are also favoured.

* Having always-on broadband Internet access at home appears to encourage more frequent use of the Internet among children, with nearly a quarter of “broadband kids” (22 per cent) going online every day compared to only four per cent of those with narrowband.

* Ten year olds are more likely to go online at school than at home. 80 per cent of those polled use the Internet at school, compared to 70 per cent at home, 43 per cent at friends’ houses, and 16 per cent at libraries.

* Respondents who have access to the Internet at home in the East of England, the South West, and the South East are more likely to go online every day than their counterparts in other regions.

* Google is the favourite Web site of UK ten year olds (named by 31 per cent of respondents), followed by CBBC (26 per cent), and Disney Channel, instant messaging and football club Web sites (all with 12 per cent) – the latter being particularly popular among boys.

* Over half of ten year olds (51 per cent) receive recommendations for particular Web sites from their friends, 31 per cent hear about them at school, and one in five visit them after seeing the Web site addresses on TV.

* After “googling”, which nearly three quarters of ten year olds (70 per cent) do when they go online, the most popular Web activities are finding information for school projects (68 per cent) and playing games online (67 per cent).

* Over a quarter of the respondents (28 per cent) use email to stay in touch with friends and family and a fifth (21 per cent) log on to use instant messenger services. It even looks like handwritten thank you letters could soon be a thing of the past, with over half of ten year olds saying they would send an email instead.

* Gaming is very popular, with 80 per cent of ten year olds having access to a games console such as PlayStation or Xbox at home. In comparison, digital cameras and MP3 players are yet to make significant in-roads into the home lives of ten year olds, with only 22 per cent and 13 per cent respectively having access to them.

* Footballers and pop stars would be the most fascinating “e-pals” for UK ten year olds. Given the opportunity to have any celebrity’s email address, David Beckham was the most popular choice, followed by Britney Spears, Eminem, McFly and Wayne Rooney.

* Nearly half of ten year olds (48 per cent) have the time they spend on the Internet restricted by their parents, while 66 per cent say that their parents have rules about what they may and may not do online.

* Tech-savvy kids are becoming home-based helpdesks, with the parents of over a third of the children surveyed (39 per cent) having asked for their help when using the Internet. “Broadband parents” are more likely to turn to their children for technical advice than their narrowband counterparts – 49 per cent compared to 33 per cent.

* When asked who they thought invented the Internet as we know it today, the majority of the ten year olds polled did not want to hazard a guess. The most popular suggestions among those who did are ‘scientists’, including Thomas Edison and Einstein, and Bill Gates or Microsoft. God, AOL, Alan Sugar, Google and The Queen are also cited, with even a few mentions of Robbie Williams and the ubiquitous Crazy Frog.


We always thought it was the ‘Crazy Frog’ too.. hrmmm.
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