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Teens and Parents Feeling Tethered to Smartphones, says Study

The study surveyed 743 U.S. teens and 1,058 U.S. parents of teens from March 7 to April 10. The margin of error is 4.5 percentage points

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Middle-school girls use mobile phones as they chat in a restaurant, Dec. 15, 2006. (VOA)
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Parents lament their teenagers’ noses constantly in their smartphones, but they might benefit from taking stock of their own screen time habits.

A new report from the Pew Research Center says two-thirds of parents are concerned about the amount of time their teenage children spend in front of screens.

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But more than half of teens said they often or sometimes find their parents or caregivers to be distracted by screens when trying to have a conversation with them. And more than a third expressed concern about their own screen time.

The study surveyed 743 U.S. teens and 1,058 U.S. parents of teens from March 7 to April 10. The margin of error is 4.5 percentage points. (VOA)

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American Teens Prefer Communicating Over Text to Face-to-Face Meetings, says Study

The study was conducted online among American with a sample of 1,141 young people ages 13 to 17, from March 22 to April 10

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Texting can lead to strain and injury, otherwise known as text neck. Here contestants compete in a texting championship in New York, Aug. 8, 2012. (VOA)

American teenagers are starting to prefer communicating via text instead of meeting face-to-face, according to a study published Monday by the independent organization Common Sense Media.

Some 35 percent of kids aged 13 to 17 years old said they would rather send a text than meet up with people, which received 32 percent.

The last time the media and technology-focused nonprofit conducted such a survey in 2012, meeting face-to-face hit 49 percent, far ahead of texting’s 33 percent.

More than two-thirds of American teens choose remote communication — including texting, social media, video conversation and phone conversation — when they can, according to the study.

In 2012 less than half of them marked a similar preference.

Notably, in the six-year span between the two studies the proportion of 13- to 17-year-olds with their own smartphone increased from 41 to 89 percent.

American teens
Customers look at iPhone 8 and iPhone 8 Plus phones at an Apple Store in San Francisco, California, Sept. 22, 2017. (VOA)

As for social networks, 81 percent of respondents said online exchange is part of their lives, with 32 percent calling it “extremely” or “very” important.

The most-used platform for this age group is Snapchat (63 percent), followed by Instagram (61 percent) and Facebook (43 percent).

Some 54 percent of the teens who use social networks said it steals attention away from those in their physical presence.

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Two-fifths of them said time spent on social media prevents them from spending more time with friends in person.

The study was conducted online among American with a sample of 1,141 young people ages 13 to 17, from March 22 to April 10. (VOA)

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