The report, the fourth and last release from Pew’s 2009 project on teen cell phone use, finds that the mobile phone has become the favored communication hub for the majority of American teens. It explores topics such as text messaging and voice calling, the reasons for choosing different communication methods and how parents and schools are regulating teens' mobile phone use.
Some 75 percent of 12-17 year-olds own cell phones, up from 45 percent in 2004. While calling is the primary mode of conversing with parents, texting is the preferred channel of basic communication between teens and their friends. One in 3 teens sends more than 100 text messages a day, or 3000 texts a month. That is a sharp rise from the 51 percent of teens who were texters in 2006. More than half of teens, or 54 percent, send texts daily -- a trend that has increased rapidly since early 2008.
The report explores the phone usage related to gender, race and income. Findings suggest that cell phones are seen as a mixed blessing for parents and teens, who say the devices make their lives safer and more convenient yet also create new tensions.
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