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'Pester power' fuels mobile and tablet sales

Sunday, December 22, 2013 - 01:51

Dec. 23 - UK Mums and Dads are buying more and more mobile phones and tablet computers than ever for their children, earning them the label 'Generation Give In' as they cave in to toddlers' so-called 'Pester Power'. Retailers might be delighted, but, as Hayley Platt reports, there are concerns over the rights and wrongs of the growing trend.

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Seventy-trhee percent of 10-year-olds in Britain own their own mobile phone. That's earned parents of young children in the UK the title 'Generation Give-In'. With Christmas approaching that's good news for the likes of Apple and Samsung. Zali Huseyin is Mum to ten-year old Elliz. SOUNDBITE: Zali Huseyin, mother to 10 year-old Ellize. "A lot of the children have got all of the new technology, iPads, tablets and so on, so yes a lot of pressure really." SOUNDBITE: 10 year old Elliz Huseyin, saying (English) "All my friends had a phone and I really wanted one." Demand for mobiles for children varies across the world. In France just 10 percent of ten year-olds own one. It's around 30 percent in the States. While in Poland it's more than 80 percent.. And it's not just phones that kids crave. Toddlers have often mastered the tablet computer before they start school. Some owning their own. SOUNDBITE: Lucy Bailey, aged three and a half, saying (English): "You can do different games, you can". Lucy Bailey is just three and a half. Mum Helen says her youngest - 18 month-old Annie - is already showing an interest. SOUNDBITE: Helen Bailey, mother to Lucy and Annie, saying (English): "As soon as one child gets it they've all had a go on it so they all want it. Also they see it on the telly so they're watching adverts on telly and it's 'I want that, I want that", so it's a constant reminder to them they haven't got it." Generation Give-in is maybe fuelling sales but there are concerns about the trend. Katie O'Donovan helps run parenting website Mumsnet. SOUNDBITE: Katie O'Donovan, MUMSNET "I think while parents can see the benefits of buying some of these products they also do think that they're kids perhaps want too much when they're too young. That actually a smart phone or a tablet isn't quite right for a seven-, eight- or nine-year-old who is convinced that they actually want one of those things." The debate about the rights and wrongs of children owning their own phones and tablets won't end any time soon. And this Christmas - in the UK at least - they'll be plenty of small flat boxes under the Christmas tree.

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'Pester power' fuels mobile and tablet sales

Sunday, December 22, 2013 - 01:51