Hold On, Let Me Just Call My Two-Year-Old's Cell
from the tones-for-tots dept
As with McDonald's use of playgrounds to get that brand recognition working in kids' heads early, technology makers are eager to get their products in the hands of tots as soon as possible. Wireless carriers have been spending more and more cash on marketing to kids over the years, often dressing the pitches up as educational initiatives. Parents are increasingly using text messaging to keep in touch with their kids too, and often use GPS functionality as a digital umbilical. Combined with the increase in kid-friendly content and games, the age at which junior gets his first clamshell keeps dropping. A new study from the NPD Group suggests that 15% of 2- to 5-year-olds -- and 62% of 11- to 14-year-olds -- now use cell phones. It's not clear what exactly a two-year-old really has to talk about, but every time this is brought up the debate arises over how young is too young for a cellphone. Assuming there are no proveable health risks, it's not clear what harm comes from giving your kid a cellphone, provided you make sure they don't dig themselves into a hole. Whether you think it's a good idea or not, it looks like Mike's 2004 prediction is coming true: we'll soon be handing kids a cellphone a few minutes after they catch their first breath.