Today’s kids, tomorrow’s travellers and what they are doing online
For some insight on how travel companies might shape products and services for up and coming generations, it’s worth looking at numbers on children’s current online behaviour.
The latest figures from research organisation ChildWise provide good insight into technology in the lives of UK children aged five to 16.
More and more children now own an internet-enabled mobile phone with 65% saying they have one, rising to 85% for those aged 11 and over. The numbers have crept up from two years ago, when Tnooz last covered the research, from 61% and 77% respectively.
The mobile phone continues to be the item children can least live without, say 29%, followed by computers 21%, games consoles 16% and television 16%.
Usage for activities via mobile other than calls is up slightly with children spending more than an 100 minutes a day (more than 90 minutes two years ago).
According to the research, most children, 61%, access the internet in the privacy of their rooms and 72% have their own laptop or PC.
The figures around portable devices are in line with trends among adults with 46% of children having a laptop versus 61% two years ago, 36% a tablet versus 11% and, 22% a PC compared to 26%.
The study also shows a decline in the popularity of Facebook with fewer than half of all children (44%) who access the internet visiting Facebook in the previous week and only 14% saying it was their favourite website, compared to 25% in the 2012 study.
YouTube was favourite for 17% (12% in 2012) with 66% saying they visited it in the past week.
In terms of what activities kids do on mobiles, texting is most popular, followed by calls and accessing the internet. 51% also use the devices for social media compared to last year’s figure of 44%.
The latest report also looked at the types of applications the children, aged nine to 16, had used in the past week with games and social networking coming out top at 74% and 53%, respectively.
Interesting to note that 13% had used travel and navigation apps.
It also questioned them on the devices used to watch television with laptops and PCs coming in at 27%, tablets at 25%, via games console 17% and mobile phone 16% supporting the multi-channel target many companies are trying to provide.
The TV set is still most popular for 90%.
The research was carried out by interviewing 2415 children aged 5-16 in 81 schools across the UK.
NB: Boy with tablet image via Shutterstock.
Linda Fox is deputy editor for Tnooz. For the past eight years she has worked as a freelance journalist across a range of B2B titles including Travolution, ABTA Magazine, Travelmole and the Business Travel Magazine.
In this time she has also undertaken corporate projects for a number of high profile travel technology, travel management and research companies.
Prior to her freelance career she covered hotels and technology news for Travel Trade Gazette for seven years. Linda joined TTG from Caterer & Hotelkeeper where she worked on the features desk for more than five years.