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Kids’ Tablet Play and Household Ownership Increases

48% of kids between 2 and 12 use these devices

  • Key4Communications

Ownership of tablets in households with 2 -12 year olds has increased from 50% to 59% in the past 12 months, according to the Evolution of Play 2014 report from The NPD Group, a global information company.

Among kids ages 2 to 12, usage of tablets has also increased, from 38% in 2013 to 48% in 2014. Almost half of parents say that their child is playing on a tablet more than they were a year ago, a rate not matched by any other device. While tablet ownership and play are increasing, two-thirds of parents don’t see it taking away from traditional toys.

“Most households have electronics such as tablets, and in some cases children not only use these devices, they are the primary owners,” said Juli Lennett, president of the Toys division at The NPD Group. “The role of technology in children’s lives cannot be overlooked, and parents recognize that, while sometimes struggling with it.”

The parents who are most likely to see the impact of technology are those with a child in the 10 to 12 age group, who were just as likely to have purchased technology in the past 12 months as they were to purchase traditional toys. The youngest of these children (ages 2 to 5), though they are likely to have some exposure to electronic devices, are still well entrenched in their traditional toys. It is the parents of kids who are caught between young and old (ages 6 to 9) that seem to struggle more with technology – they like the touch and feel of traditional toys, and limit their child’s time on devices. These parents are more likely to purchase traditional toys, but 37% also state that their child’s playtime with technology has lessened their playtime with traditional toys.

“This generation is using technology as their coming-of-age play source, as past generations have done by moving to other items or methods of play as they aged,” added Lennett. “Understanding the evolution within today’s play arena is as important to success in the toy industry as understanding the balance that today’s parents try to strike between the role of technology and traditional toys in their children’s lives.”

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