The use of the smartphone and social networks among teenagers in 2018

The use of mobile devices and social platforms among teenagers causes some parents’ doubts and concern. It is for this reason that the Common Sense Institute has conducted a study among thousands of teenagers between the ages of 13 and 17 to learn about their habits, uses and behaviors on their mobile and social networks. The research center corroborated the data it obtained in 2012 to 2018 to determine the evolution of the adolescent experience.

81% of teenagers use social networks

On the question of the consultation of social networks, Common Sense notes that the uses have changed radically since 2012. If the number of teenagers who use them remained stable with about 81% of the respondents, the number of young people consulting the social networks several times in the day has more than doubled in 6 years. It goes from 34% in 2012 to 70% today.

Teenagers are also more likely to own a smartphone. From 41% in 2012 the trend explodes to 89% for 2018. A thin slice of this generation (19%) claims that it does not make use of social networks.




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Teenagers prefer to communicate via SMS and social networks rather than face-to-face

Common Sens reveals that the most popular way for teens to communicate is courier services (text or video) or SMS. Face-to-face communication is a thing of the past, and only 32% of teens say it was 49% in 2012. 35% now prefer to send SMS, 16% turn to social networks and 10% to video chat.



Contradictory data also support the subject, since when teenagers meet face to face, 44% say they are frustrated to see their interlocutor use his smartphone. Paradoxically, 55% say they have trouble leaving their phones when they are with their friends. Finally, 54% of teenagers admit that the use of their smartphone and social networks distract them when they are with friends.



Facebook is no longer popular among young people

Today, Facebook seems definitively considered a social network of old. Only 15% of teens say Facebook is their main social platform. Snapchat is the big winner of this generation with 41% of users, in front of Instagram who is struggling with its 22%.




From an emotional point of view, adolescents tend to say that social networks have a positive effect on their morale: 25% feel less alone, 16% feel less depressed, 20% feel better self-confidence.

Another group of adolescents with low socio-emotional well-being (loneliness, depression, lack of confidence) are more likely to feel the negative effects of social media. 70% of this party feel excluded from social interactions, 43% are unhappy when no one likes or comments on their post, leading them to delete them. Finally, 35% of these poor-looking teenagers were cyber-harassed, compared to 5% of youth with high socio-emotional well-being. In total, 13% of the adolescents interviewed were cyber-harassed.




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