Kids apps use doubles, but TV still most powerful for ads

Kids apps use doubles, but TV still most powerful for ads

Children’s use of apps has more than doubled in just 18-months, pushing down the use of games consoles in Australia.

The tenth Cartoon Network New Generations survey has also shown 69% of children between four and 14 use apps now, twice the number of the 2011 survey, using on average 7.1 per month, mainly on their own smartphones and tablets, or those of their parents.

TV still dominates the way children are consuming media, with ads there and on the internet seen by kids as the best way to learn about new toys, games, movies and technology, although 30% of all children use tablets to access the internet.

Peter Hammer, senior manager of strategic research for Turner Broadcasting System Asia Pacific, said this combination of apps and TV was giving more power to the advertisers.

“Apps have redefined the way that parents are entertaining their kids,” he said. “The rapid explosion of smart devices, within just a few short years, has quickly changed the way that kids are accessing the internet and playing games.”

The main pastime for children on the internet is now gaming as opposed to social networking, and they are also watching on average 10 minutes of online video per day, with music videos, TV episodes and movies more popular than user generated content.

The use of games consoles dropped 32% compared to the 2011 survey, with kids “gravitating towards smartphones, and other app-enabled devices, like the iPod Touch or iPad, for their gaming”, added Hammer.

Surprisingly, six-in-seven parents agreed TV advertising was the best way they could learn what their children want, using it as a tool to introduce them to new products for their progeny, while the survey showed kids have control of a record $1.6bn through their pocket money.

In subscription TV homes versus free-to-air only homes children had on average 62% more spending money, showing “the relative value of TV and further proves that it is still the strongest advertising medium in the market,” said Hammer.

He added: “When you look at the $1.6bn in spending power, kids are a force to be reckoned with and yet, as a market, are often neglected. Our research also shows that kids have great influence over their parents spending as well.” 

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