Aussie teens can’t live without internet

11_Aussie teens can_t live without internet

Frances Mao

(Australian Associated Press)

No Snapchat, no Yik Yak, no Facebook?

That’s a worst case scenario for Aussie teenagers, who having been born into the internet age, fear not being able to go online.

The finding features in a new report looking at how often teens go online, what they look at and they devices they use.

The report by the Australian Communication and Media Authority and the Office of the Children’s eSafety Commissioner described the internet as being integral to young people who use it to learn, have fun and keep in touch with friends.

“Born into an already web-connected world, many teens have been using the internet for the majority of their lives and fear not having access to the digital environment,” the report said.

For 14-17 year olds, the oldest of whom were born in 1998, the world wide web already existed when they were born.

The research found 83 per cent of teenagers went online at least three times a day in 2015, and mainly at home, with girls online more often than boys.

Teens are online the most after school and in the evening, but are also switched on around bedtime from 10pm to midnight.

Teenagers also lead the usage of tablets, and internet-connected devices like game consoles and smart TVs but use desktop computers and laptops less than older age groups.

Eighty per cent are also connected via their smartphones, compared to the number in 2011 where less than a quarter had mobile internet.

The report says smartphones are the single biggest factor in teens spending more hours online.

And what’s pulling them in?

For teenagers, the internet is still most popular for providing entertainment in the form of videos, music and games.

With more video-streaming players around, they’re streaming more and downloading less, the report found.

Leading websites include YouTube and Netflix for watching videos, Steam and Minecraft for playing games and Google for research.

And while the hype is all about social networks, email remains the most popular form of communication with 78 per cent using the medium compared to 54 per cent who use social media. Of the networks, Facebook remains the top social network.

WHAT TEENS DO ONLINE

* General research and browsing, 78 pct of teens

* Email, 78 pct

* Stream movies, TV shows and YouTube videos 64 pct

* Social media, 54 pct

* Play games online, 47 pct

* Upload photos and videos, 44 pct

* Download music and video, 40 pct

* Stream music and radio, 40 pct

* Online commerce, 20 pct

* Financial transactions, 12 pct

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