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BizReport : Mobile Marketing : April 21, 2010

Pew: Texting preferred comms channel for teens

Teens continue to let their fingers do the talking. A new report out from Pew Research found that texting is the top form of communication between this age group, more popular even than talking on their mobiles or email.

by Helen Leggatt

Three-quarters of teens now own a mobile phone, a significant rise from just 45% in 2004. As a consequence, more and more teens are using their devices as a means to contact their friends - shunning other methods of communication such as email and instant messaging.

In particular, the number of teens who use texting as a way to communicate with friends has exploded in recent years. While just over half (51%) of teens were texters in 2006, that figure has now risen to nearly three-quarters (72%).

Now, according to Pew Research's new report, "Teens and Mobile Phones", texting is the preferred method of contacting their friends for over half (54%) of all teens, more than any other common method:-

- 38% call on their mobile phone
- 33% talk face to face
- 30% use a landline
- 25% use social networking sites
- 24% instant message
- 11% use email

"These findings show that in a very short time cell phones have moved from being a fancy toy in a few teens' lives to favored communications hubs for most teens that are vitally important to nourishing their ties to friends and coordinating complicated family lives," said Rich Ling, co-author of the report.

Some teens are certainly making the most of their fancy toys. Around 15% of teens send a whopping 200 or so text per day - that's over 6,000 each month. The average teen sends and receives around 50 texts per day or around 1,500 per month.

Tags: mobile marketing, mobile phones, research, teens, texting, trends

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