Description

This report provides comprehensive and current information and analysis of the US Families and Technology market including market size, anticipated market forecast, relevant market segmentation, and industry trends for the Families and Technology market in the US.

Current market landscape

The pandemic has given consumers more time to engage with tech devices and digital activities. Kids of all ages are using mobile devices and many appear to be receiving their own smartphones around the age of 10. While YouTube videos and video games can keep kids entertained, the online world also presents threats that today’s parents did not face during their pre-internet childhoods. This means parents may need to be educated about the issues their children may face online.

Future market trends in parenting in the age of technology

There are opportunities for more convenient parental controls to be developed, and brands have chances to offer parents greater support as they try to keep their kids safe online.

Read on to discover more about the US Families and Technology consumer market, read our US Evolution of Technology in Consumers’ Lives Market Report 2021, or take a look at our other Electrical Goods Industry Market research reports.

Quickly understand

  • Tech device ownership among kids aged 4-17, including smartphones, tablets and gaming consoles.
  • Activities kids spend the most time doing while on mobile devices, by age and gender.
  • Parents’ rules and attitudes related to screen time.
  • Top concerns among parents related to their children’s online activity.
  • Interest and adoption of parental control apps and technology.
  • Impact of technology on families.

Covered in this report

Brands include: Xbox, PlayStation, Amazon Alexa, Google Home, Oculus Quest, Meta (Facebook), YouTube, Verizon, T-Mobile, TikTok, Instagram, Twitter, Reddit, Edge, Bing, Microsoft, Elkjøp, Lenovo, Pony Malta, Bumble, Netflix, Disney+, Raddish, Nike, Chipotle, Gucci, Sims 4, Roblox, VRChat, Gillette, Dove Men + Care, Subaru, Hello Fresh, Nintendo Switch.

Expert analysis from a specialist in the field

This report, written by Kristen Boesel, a leading analyst in the Lifestyles and Leisure sector, delivers in-depth commentary and analysis to highlight current trends and add expert context to the numbers.

Though it remains a top concern for parents, the pandemic has resulted in an abundance of screen time for kids. The popularity of YouTube and video games means brands have opportunities to reach kids with strategic ad placements and partnerships. Parents may not be aware of potential threats to their kids online and could use some help monitoring their kids’ locations and digital activities. As consumers’ expectations to be protected and supported come to the forefront in the coming years, consumers will expect tech and social media companies to do more to keep their kids safe online.

Kristen Boesel, Senior Lifestyles and Leisure Analyst
Kristen Boesel
Senior Lifestyles and Leisure Analyst

Table of Contents

  1. Overview

    • What you need to know
      • This Report looks at the following areas
        • Definition
          • Market context
            • COVID-19: US context
              • Economic and other assumptions
              • Executive Summary

                  • Top takeaways
                    • Market overview
                      • Figure 1: Tech devices that kids own, 2021
                      • Figure 2: Digital activities that kids spend the most time doing, by age and gender of child, 2021
                      • Figure 3: Category outlook, 2022-27
                    • Opportunities and challenges
                      • Families represent a valuable market for tech companies
                        • Figure 4: Parents’ attitudes toward technology and family time, 2021
                      • A digital divide can make it challenging for parents to protect kids online
                        • Figure 5: Parents’ attitudes toward monitoring children digitally, 2021
                      • A reckoning is slowly coming for social media brands
                        • Key consumer insights
                          • Majority of tweens and teens own smartphones
                            • Figure 6: Ownership of smartphones and tablets, by age of child, 2021
                          • Kids’ tech use evolves from passive activities to more active ones
                            • Figure 7: Digital activities that kids spend the most time doing, by age of child, 2021
                          • Top concerns are screen time and online interactions with adult strangers
                            • Figure 8: Parents’ concerns about children’s tech use, 2021
                        • Market Factors

                          • Economic factors
                            • Spike in demand during 2020 will hinder growth for hardware spending now
                              • Supply chain issues and high inflation cause trouble for the tech industry
                                • Figure 9: Consumer Price Index change from previous year, 2020-21
                              • Social media companies and legal gray areas
                                • Consumers’ rights make it harder to do what is right
                                  • Whistleblower sheds light on the need for more regulation within the tech space
                                    • Legislative action unlikely to follow calls for policy changes
                                      • 5G technology is imminent
                                        • Figure 10: Online display carousel ad for Verizon, 2021
                                    • Factors Impacting Families

                                      • Parents tend to have more money and are willing to spend on tech
                                        • Figure 11: Share of US households, by presence of own children, 2020
                                        • Figure 12: Median household income, by type of household, 2020
                                      • Teen social media use can be problematic
                                          • Figure 13: Percentage of teens who consider social media platform entertaining, by platform, 2021
                                        • Parents don’t know what they don’t know
                                          • Spotlight: The New York Times exposes Sanctioned Suicide site
                                            • Current parental controls exist, but fall short
                                              • Subscription services
                                                • Free controls from the Big Three
                                                • Families and Technology: Fast Facts

                                                  • Kids’ Device Ownership

                                                    • Smartphones are essential
                                                      • Figure 14: Tech devices that kids own, 2021
                                                    • Youngest kids rely on tablets more than smartphones
                                                      • Majority of tweens and teens have their own smartphones
                                                        • Figure 15: Ownership of smartphones and tablets, by age of child, 2021
                                                      • Most kids receive newly purchased phones
                                                        • Figure 16: Acquisition source for child’s first smartphone, 2021
                                                      • Private televisions and wireless headphones are also common for kids
                                                        • Figure 17: Tech devices that kids own, 2021
                                                      • From an early age, boys are more engaged with gaming than girls are
                                                        • Figure 18: Video game console ownership, by child age and gender, 2021
                                                      • Welcome girls by addressing misogyny within the gaming community
                                                        • Figure 19: Gen.G x Bumble, female esports team, 2019
                                                    • Kids’ Digital Activities

                                                      • YouTube occupies the most screen time for kids
                                                        • Figure 20: Digital activities that kids spend the most time doing, 2021
                                                      • Spotlight: Hello Fridge educates while promoting food and beverage brands
                                                        • Figure 21: Torbjörn, Edvin och en LÄSKig (men prisbelönt) bryggerihäxa!
                                                      • Kids under 9 spend more time streaming content than older kids
                                                        • Figure 22: Digital activities that kids spend the most time doing, by age of child, 2021
                                                      • Spotlight: Raddish Kids partners with Disney
                                                        • Figure 23: Raddish Kids Instagram post promoting Raya and the Last Dragon, 2021
                                                      • Tween and teen boys less likely to use tech to socialize
                                                        • Figure 24: Digital activities that kids spend the most time doing, by age and gender of child, 2021
                                                      • Spotlight: Gucci goes digital
                                                        • Figure 25: Gucci Off The Grid, October 2020
                                                    • Parents’ Concerns

                                                      • Parents see screen time as a significant threat
                                                        • Figure 26: Parents’ top concerns about children’s tech use, 2021
                                                      • Only a third of parents report concern about cyberbullying
                                                        • Figure 27: Parents’ concerns about children’s tech use, 2021
                                                      • Parental concerns vary by age of kids
                                                        • Tweens’ parents show greatest concern
                                                          • Figure 28: Parents’ concerns about children’s tech use, by age of child, 2021
                                                        • Tween girls can be vulnerable
                                                          • Teen boys need support
                                                            • Figure 29: Parents’ concerns about children’s tech use, by age and gender of child, 2021
                                                          • Spotlight: Dove tackles toxic masculinity
                                                            • Figure 30: #DadsCare How To Teach Kids to Manage and Express Stress, 2020
                                                        • Regulating Screen Time

                                                          • Most kids get far more than an hour of screen time each day
                                                              • Figure 31: Average daily screen time, by age of kids, 2021
                                                            • Setting time limits is the top way parents regulate kids’ tech use
                                                              • Figure 32: Tech-related actions done by parents, 2021
                                                            • Boys increase screen time at a younger age than girls
                                                              • Figure 33: Average daily screen time, by age and gender of kids, 2021
                                                            • Spotlight: Total Produce Nordic incentivizes healthful eating among gamers
                                                            • Surveillance and Control

                                                              • Most parents have faith in their kids’ ability to be safe online
                                                                • Figure 34: Parents’ agreement that they trust their kids to know how to be safe online, 2021
                                                              • Spotlight: New Skills Academy offers formal training for parents
                                                                • Despite confidence, there’s strong interest in digital monitoring tools
                                                                  • Figure 35: Parents’ attitudes toward monitoring children digitally, 2021
                                                                • Monitoring kids’ activity is more challenging than regulating screen time
                                                                  • Figure 36: Tech-related actions done by parents, 2021
                                                                • Spotlight: Subaru highlights safety to make parents feel secure
                                                                  • Figure 37: 2019 Subaru Forester: A Parent’s Imagination, 2019
                                                              • Current Opportunities and Strategies

                                                                • Demonstrate a commitment to protecting kids’ mental health
                                                                  • Figure 38: Dove | Reverse Selfie | Have #TheSelfieTalk
                                                                • Help parents spend quality time with their kids
                                                                  • Figure 39: Parents’ attitudes toward technology and family time, 2021
                                                                • The promise of old-fashioned, unplugged family time still appeals to parents
                                                                    • Figure 40: Hello Fresh Instagram post, 2021
                                                                  • Technology can unite families too
                                                                    • Figure 41: Neil Patrick Harris & Family – Big Brain Academy: Brain vs. Brain – Nintendo Switch
                                                                • Future Opportunities and Strategies

                                                                    • Meeting needs through the lens of the Technology Trend Driver
                                                                      • In Control: boost parents’ sense of security with user-friendly parental controls
                                                                        • Figure 42: Parents’ attitudes toward their ability to protect their kids online, 2021
                                                                      • The Suite Life: improving parental controls could win loyalty among parents
                                                                        • Meeting needs through the lens of the Surroundings Trend Driver
                                                                          • Climate Complexity: current methods of device production are not sustainable
                                                                            • Meeting needs through the lens of the Rights Trend Driver
                                                                              • Ethics Check: tech companies must demonstrate accountability
                                                                              • Appendix – Data Sources and Abbreviations

                                                                                • Data sources
                                                                                  • Consumer survey data
                                                                                    • Marketing creative
                                                                                      • Abbreviations and terms
                                                                                        • Abbreviations
                                                                                        • Appendix – The Consumer

                                                                                            • Figure 43: Share of US households with coresident children, by living arrangement, 2020
                                                                                            • Figure 44: Household income distribution, by type of household, 2020
                                                                                            • Figure 45: Smartphone ownership by age and gender of kids aged 9-17, 2021
                                                                                            • Figure 46: Tech-related actions done by parents, 2021
                                                                                            • Figure 47: Tech-related actions done by parents, by age of child, 2021

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