PLAYSCIENCE UNVEILS NEW STUDY THAT SHOWS PARENTS’ DIGITAL PREFERENCES FOR THEIR CHILDREN ARE HEAVILY INFLUENCED BY GENDER
For Parents, Not All Mobile is Created Equal, Tablets Reign Supreme, and Gender Matters
PlayScience, an innovation and development company focused on play and learning, today unveiled a new study that shows parents perceptions about their child’s technology and media use is heavily influenced by their child’s gender – along with device type and perceived educational value.
The PlayScience Parents and Platform Perceptions study was conducted with a national survey of 501 parents of children between the ages of 2 and 9 years old and uncovered the following results, revealed at the 2015 Sandbox Summit at MIT:
- Girl vs. Boy Tech: For parents, gender matters when choosing a digital platform (smartphone, tablet, kids’ tablet, etc.). Parents are three times more likely to give their son a smartphone or video game device, and give their daughter a kid’s tablet (73 % vs. 65% for boys). For girls, child-friendliness is the strongest factor in purchases for parents, while for boys their son’s preference is the primary driver.
- “Managing” Boys: Parents are more likely to use tech to manage their sons during notoriously difficult parenting moments. Whether soothing them when they are upset (48% vs. 37% for girls) or getting them to bed (42% vs. 34%), parents often pacify boys with media.
- Not All Mobile is Created Equal: Tablets (especially tablets designed for children) are parent and child darlings, while smartphones lag far behind. Tablets top the list for both parents and kids at all ages, while smartphones rank at the bottom of the list of technology they prefer to use.
“Ironically, parents have distinct and very different perceptions about devices, even when they have almost identical content. Even more surprising, gender plays a significant role in the platform chosen,” said Dr. J. Alison Bryant, Co-CEO and chief play officer at PlayScience. “This study puts parents on notice to be more attentive to their attitudes and behaviors about their children’s media use. Whether conscious or unconscious, parents are more likely to take into consideration their son’s preferences, while seeming to be more protective when it comes to choosing for their daughter.”
Dr. Bryant, along with Co-CEO and President Paul Levine, unveiled the findings today at Sandbox Summit, an annual conference focused on how play intersects with learning, entertainment, and technology to positively impact the lives of children. PlayScience hosts Sandbox Summit, produced in partnership with MIT’s Education Arcade and Comparative Media Studies.
Find excerpts from the study here: presentation
PlayScience is an innovation and development company that partners with brands to create and launch new consumer experiences in play, learning, and entertainment. The company is focused on helping partners scale businesses and grow customer relationships with end-to-end solutions starting with understanding consumers and trends, creating the strategy and plan, to the actual design and development of products. www.playsciencelab.com @playscience #Sandbox15