A media report over Business Wire of the usage trends of consumer electronics among children have shown that the age of onset of electronic devices have become earlier at an average of 6.7 years in 2007 compared to the 2005 data which was 8.1 years (BusinessWire, June 5, 2007). The news article reports on the newest findings of a consumer market research called The NPD Group. The group has been concerned with finding information about consumer behavior in different products and services. The group has claimed to be the foremost research oriented industry that helps other business to track and initiate new products and services to the market. The group’s latest study on Kid’s and Consumer Electronics Trends III (The NPD Group, 2007) has measured the device usage trends. The findings of the study indicate that children have started using electronic devices at a younger age across all kinds of devices although television and desktop computers have been found to have the youngest users at 4 to 5 years old. It was also reported that children have been using more frequently and earlier than other devices were DVD players and cell phones. The research also found that on average, the number of devices owned by a family have declined as compared to the 2005. Moreover, the study found that the frequency of personal ownership and use by children of electronic devices have decreased over time. This was attributed to the observation that parents reported that they have not bought any electronic devices for the past 12 months that the study was conducted. The group concludes that although children are becoming consumers of electronic devices at a younger age than before, the average frequency of use have decreased as compared to the 2005 and 2006 version of the same study.
The most important variables of this study were the age of initial use which was reported in averages or mean, the use of the different devices were reported in days per week and the values reported were the average or mean. Lastly, the behavioral and attitudinal variables like purchase of electronic devices for the last year or the possibility of purchasing branded items were reported in percentages. The presentation of the results in the news report were concerned with pointing out the most relevant results like the age of initial use and usage trends of the devices. The report followed the essay format and the values were presented enclosed in parenthesis. Even if the information gleaned form this study were important and very useful, the way it was presented was not good. The first part where initial age was discussed was simple and direct to the point, but when it moved to kinds of devices used and usage and ownership, the variables were not adequately presented. The report also did not make use of the specific values in the later part of the report, like what percentage of the group/sample were using PDMP’s and digital cameras over those who were using DVD players and cell phones (Hurlburt, 2003). The conclusions of the study were not also emphasized and it’s significance to the present knowledge of results. The frequency distribution was not even presented in table or graphical form which would have lend greater understanding of the report and what it meant for consumers and businesses alike. Lastly, the findings were also contrasted to that of the earlier version of the same study, it provided the basis for the findings that age of initial use increased and usage trends have decreased. This was a good point to stress but the relative difference in the values or the statistical mean of the three years of the study could have also been presented in charts or tables, the study was supposed to be trends (Lawson, 2002) and yet it did not depict the trend of device usage.
BusinessWire (June 5, 2007). Children Are Becoming Exposed To and Adopting Electronic
Devices at Earlier Ages: The NPD Group. Retrieved from http://home.businesswire.com/portal/site/google/index.jsp?ndmViewId=news_view&newsId=20070605005313&newsLang=en
Hurlburt, R. (2003). Comprehending Behavioral Statistics 3rd ed. California: Brooks/Cole
Lawson, T. (2002). Everyday Statistical Reasoning. New York: Wadsworth Thomas Learning
The NPD Group (2007). Children are becoming exposed to and adopting electronic devices at
earlier ages. Press Release, Retrieved on June 14, 2007 from http://www.npd.com/press/releases/press_070605.html