The days of teens talking on the cell phones for hours are now over. Text is more popular now, and getting more so. According to a study by Pew Internet, teens are, on average, sending 60 texts a day compared to 50 texts in 2009.
Older teens saw a larger increase. Teens ranging from 14-17 years old sent about 60 texts a day two years ago — in 2011, the same group of teens sent an average of 100 texts a day. Boys of all ages increased the amount of texting over this time period, going from 30 texts a day to 50. African-American teens showed an increase from 60 texts per day to 80.
Overall, 75% of all teens text. It is the dominant daily mode of communication between teens and all those with whom they communicate, both friends and family.
The Pew study also showed that 63% of all teens say they exchange text messages with friends and family members. That number is significantly higher than other forms of communication. Just 39% of teens said they called others using their mobile device daily, while 35% said they have face-to-face conversations with friends outside of school every day. Other numbers show that 29% of teens said they use social networking sites daily, 22% use instant messaging, 19% use landlines to speak with others, and only 6% email other each day.
As texting use becomes more common, teen ownership of cell phones does as well. About one in four teens report owning a smartphone, while about three in four teens report having a standard cell phone. The percentage of younger teens has decreased since 2009: 57% of younger teens have cellphones today compared to the 66% in 2009.
Source: Pew Internet