A Third Of Children Under 10 Have Mobile Phones

22/09/2011 11:00 | Updated 22 May 2015
Mobile phonePA

Research has found that nearly a third of children aged 10 or under have mobile phones.

2,000 families were polled about the techy goods they owned.

Most of the parents agreed that 10 was a suitable age for children to have their own mobile phone with the majority (69 per cent) claiming they had given their youngster one to enable them to keep in touch when they were out.

One in 10 of the mums and dads said their child was using an internet capable smartphone like an iPhone or Android device.

The study also found that 16 per cent of children owned their own laptop, and 18 per cent had their own flat-screen TV in their bedroom, with a quarter of children owning a Nintendo Wii, and around 16 per cent a digital music player.

When asked how closely they policed their children online, 21 per cent of mums and dads said they didn't follow their child on a social network, and 12 per cent said they left children to 'play' unmonitored when using a laptop or computer. Only 49 per cent of parents said they used parental controls to block access to certain sites - the remaining 51 per cent said had no controls.

Will Gardner of children's charity Childnet, told the BBC that the findings underline the need for parents to understand how their children use technology.

He said: "It is important to help ensure parents are aware of the full functionality of the technology that young children are accessing and that they are able to use the tools and give the support that young people need to stay safe and get the most out of these devices."

In light of recommendations made by the recent Bailey Report, The government is currently considering making ISPs automatically offer software that will filter out harmful content.

What do you think?

Do your children have mobile phones and unrestricted access to the web? Do you worry about what they are doing online, or downloading to their phones?

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