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Kids Watching More Online TV Than Traditional TV

The internet and on-demand viewing has finally overtaken traditional TV as youngsters’ favourite tech pastime.

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UK kid research organisation Childwise did a study of 2,000 subjects between the ages of five and sixteen years old and has found that average web use on smart devices for this demographic has raised to 3 hours a day, with television use dropping to 2 hours regular viewing.

67% of this age group were reported to have their own tablets and are using them for watching online content as well as engaging in social networking with apps such as Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.

In a sign of the times, the survey showed that internet-based streaming service Netflix now has a greater following than any TV-based channel with online binge-watching being the preferred viewing option. The report says that kids are still watching TV, just in a different way and the youth of today are also drawn to YouTube as a source of entertainment over dedicated kid stations like CBBC and CiTV.

This is the first time web has overtaken TV in the UK and according to Childwise director Simon Leggett these tech savvy 5-16 year olds are “seeking out content of their choice”. We don’t know about you but we think that last quote could be considered somewhat concerning if viewing is unmonitored by a responsible adult. Netflix does however have a kids friendly filter which parents can set to stop kids watching anything they shouldn’t be.

This is a real eye-opener about our TV viewing habits as a population – especially for those of us who still remember squinting at four channels and watching Rainbow at teatime.