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Pew Internet & American Life Project: One in three American teens sends more than 100 text messages a day

The Pew Internet & American Life Project is a project of the Pew Research Center and published a report with the topic "Teens, Cell Phones and Texting". A survey interviewed a nationally representative sample of 800 teens age 12-to-17 years-old and their parents living in the United States and furthermore focus groups with teens between the ages of 12 and 18. The results show: Texting has become the most important channel of basic communication between teens and their friends and 88% of teen cell phone users send text messages.

The survey also shows that one in three teens sends more than 100 text messages a day, also that means 3000 texts a month. Daily text messaging by teens has increased since 2008 because 38% of teens were daily texters in February 2008, and that has risen to 54% of teens in September 2009. Of the 75% of teens who own cell phones, 87% use text messaging. Here are some facts about the texters:

  • 15% of teens send more than 200 texts a day, that means 6.000 texts a month.
  • Boys send and receive 30 texts a day and girls send and receive 80 messages per day.
  • Teen texters ages 12-13 send and receive 20 texts a day.
  • 14-17 year-old texters send and receive 60 messages a day.

For parents, the relationship between teenager and their cell-phones is an area of conflict because parents use the mobile phone to control their child and methods are limiting its uses, checking its contents and using it to control the place of residence of the child. Especially the last argument is one of the most important reasons why many parents permit a cell phone. The data shows:

  • 64% of parents look at the contents of cell phone and 62% of parents have taken away the phone because of pressure.
  • 46% of parents limit the number of minutes their children talk and 52% limit the times of day they use the phone.
  • Parents of 12 to13 year-old girls are more likely to report most controlling behavior.

Cell phones are have become multimedia recording devices and pocket-sized internet connected computers. The data of the teen mobile phone owners show:

  • 83% use their cell phones to take pictures.
  • 64% share pictures with others.
  • 46% play games on their mobile phones.
  • 23% access social network sites on their phones.
  • 21% use email on their cell phones.

   Click to download the corresponding pdf-document (2.736 MB)

Available on the website since April 23, 2010