A new Pew Internet & Life Project survey (.PDF) shows that, unsurprisingly, cell phone use is continuing to rise among teens.
Specifically, the first Pew survey in 2004 showed that 45% of teens (vs. 65% of adults) had a cell phone. As of 2008, that number had risen to 71% (vs. 77% of adults). The survey had 914 respondents in 2004, vs. 2,134 respondents in 2008. Data was collected from those 12 - 17 years of age.
Age tends to affect both ownership and activity. Only 52 percent of 12- to 13-year-olds own a cell phone. At age 14 the percentage leaps to 72%, while more than 17-year-olds owned their own cell phone.
In terms of activity, only 28% of 12-year-olds talked with their friends daily via cell phone, while more than 70% of 17-year-olds did so. Text messaging showed a similar gap, with That also holds true for texting, as 25% of those aged 12 - 14 text daily, while 51% of teens aged 15 - 17 do so.
It should come as no surprise that the most popular activity for teens is ... text-messaging. Among all teens, 38% of all teens do this on a daily basis, while 26% send messages daily via social networking sites (e.g. Facebook, MySpace) and 24% use instant messaging. Sadly, a mere 29% spend time with their friends face-to-face, something that psychologists, and even the Pope, have warned about.
Texting is more popular among girls, probably also unsurprisingly, with 42% sending text messages to friends daily, while about 34% of boys do the same.
By age 17, about 82 percent of the survey's respondents owned one. But the cell phone isn't the most frequently- used communications device; that's still the landline, Pew found, with 88 percent using it versus 66 percent for cell phones.
Also noted by Pew, the more money, the more likely teens would have a cell phone.
- Households earning $30,000 or less: 62%
- Households earning $30 - 50,000: 63%
- Households earning $50 - 75,000: 72%
- Households earning more than $75,000: 79%