Kids' Tech - A Day in a Life of the 2015/2016 Kids

Kids' Technology Consumer Research Analysis and Commentary




03 Dec 2015 - Futuresource Consulting will this week be going to field with its latest wave of consumer research focusing on kids between 3 and 12 years old, highlighting patterns and insight into technology usage and entertainment content consumption in the USA, China, Germany and UK.

In the run up to this holiday season the focus will be returning to kids shifting leisure time habits and how this will affect the sales of traditional toys. It will also report on their increased reliance on mobile devices and the continuing shifts in their consumption of entertainment. The Futuresource 'Kids Tech' study has been running for three years drawing out key trends and behavioural transitions over time.

"The Kid's Tech study captures the pulse of how children across broad age ranges are consuming digital content in a multiplatform environment across many devices," stated Carl Hibbert, Associate Director, Entertainment Content & Delivery. "The study highlights that traditional linear TV is still the most frequently watched type of content, with 40% of the kids studied primarily turning to free broadcast TV, however online video services such as Netflix are now at 25%, up from 22% a year ago. Interestingly 30% of kids sampled cited that scheduled TV makes up less than 20% of overall TV/video viewing time. Futuresource also makes a comparison between digital verses traditional gaming and it can be seen that the time children spend playing games online via apps or on a console is much greater than playing board games/jigsaw puzzles, but these traditional past times are still hugely important with 87% of our sample playing board games as a family."

The data from the study also shows that the main TV screen seems to be maintaining its position as the main window to the kids' world of entertainment content with 55% of kids watching TV/video content on the main TV screen for over 6 hours per week. In comparison, the report found that just 30% of kids sampled are now watching TV or video on a smartphone or tablet for more than 6 hours per week.

In our digital age, an ongoing topical discussion between both industry and parents alike is around time restrictions on using digital toys, monitoring digital-screen based recreation time and whether it is, or not, cannibalising traditional playtime or TV viewing. The Futuresource study already shows that two thirds of parents sampled impose time limits on their child's activities, and as with previous waves, 'playing computer or electronic games' is the main activity limited by 81% of parents, then watching movies 63% and watching TV in general (59%).

The 'Toys to Life' category is certainly one to watch and likely to rank on many children's (and adults!) Christmas lists this year. The creator of the space Activision's Skylanders has now been joined by LEGO's Dimensions, Nintendo's Amiibo and Disney's Infinity range - which this year will lead the charge with its Star Wars line-up. The wide appeal of the toys to life category is certainly visible in the immediate market place, with a quarter of both boys/girls already owning a Toys to Life product. The category will continue to see growth given the wide range of franchises available and the increasingly wider availability beyond the games console, now including Apple TV and direct to tablet which will further increase the appeal of the sector.

Minecraft is again the most frequently played Gaming App, and more by boys than girls. Of parents' annual spend on entertainment areas for their child it is still traditional toys which take up the lion's share of their spend. A tablet is still the most likely electronic device purchase a parent is planning to make for their child.

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Notes
Futuresource Consulting is a specialist research and knowledge-based consulting company, providing organisations with insight into consumer electronics, digital imaging, entertainment media, broadcast, storage media, education technology and IT. With a heritage stretching back to the 1980s, the company delivers in-depth analysis and forecasts on a global scale, advising on strategic positioning, market trends, competitive forces and technological developments. www.futuresource-consulting.com

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Futuresource Media Contact for industry comment, forecasting and trends:

Nicola Finn

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