Think the teens you know are less communicative lately?
Research just released by the Pew Internet & American Life Project proves otherwise.
Although it’s true that teens are spending less time on phone calls than before, their use of texting as a preferred communication method has risen.
In fact, 75 percent of teens ages 12 to 17 send and receive text messages. Not surprisingly, older teens — those ages 14 to 17 — account for the majority of this usage.
Overall, the number of texts teens sent rose from a median of 50 a day in 2009 to 60 two years later. Among the older teen group, the median rose from 60 texts a day in 2009 to 100 in 2011.
Girls text more frequently than than their male counterparts but boys of all ages have increased their daily texting volume from a median of 30 in 2009 to 50 in 2011.
Teens who text are more likely to report talking on the phone with friends. Some 69 percent of heavy texting teens talk daily on their cell phones, compared with 46 percent of medium texters and 43 percent of light texters.
How does the Pew categorize each group? Heavy texters exchange more than 100 texts a day. Medium texters exchange 21 to 100 texts a day. Light texters exchange 0 to 20 texts a day.
The study also showed that 77 percent of teens have cell phones, with an increase among older teens since 2009 and a slight decrease among 12- and 13-year-olds. One in four teens now reports owning a smartphone.
Why does this communications research matter? Understanding teens’ communication choices and preferences can help you stay connected.
For example, just 19 percent of teens say they talk on landlines with people in their lives daily. And, at a reported 6 percent, a small number of teens say they exchange email daily.
You might also enjoy The No. 1 Reason Americans Use Social Networks.
Now it’s your turn. Did you find anything surprising in the study’s results?