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Understanding Kids and Consumer Electronics

Reuters reports that, in households with children, the screen being watched is more likely to be a PC than a television. A recent study by the NPD Group found that 94 percent of households with children ages 4-14 had a computer. That edges out TVs, which the consulting firm's report, "Kids and Consumer Electronics," found are in slightly less than 90 percent of households with that group represented.

Kids own their own electronic products as well, most often a video game system of some kind (slightly more than 40 percent), a CD player or a television (31 percent). The NPD Group industry analyst Anita Frazier said the data demonstrated how ordinary it was for young people to use consumer electronic products.

"Today's kids are digital natives whose activities are fundamentally different than previous generations," she said. It's a trend that continues to grow, too. Frazier said more than twice the amount of kids personally own a portable digital music player now compared with last year, while cell phone ownership is up 50 percent.

To put that in perspective, however, about 23 percent of households with children had a digital music player regardless of who owned it. Frazier also said that children first began using a consumer electronic device at a younger age than in 2005, by about 6 months when averaged out, and that they did so more frequently and with a wider range of products. She expects these trends to continue.

NPD surveyed adults older than 25 with children ages 4-14 in their households for the study, which follows the first Kids and Consumer Electronics report a year ago.

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