TechsavvychildrenThere’s no doubt that times are changing.  Technology is becoming a way of life, and because of it, children are exposed to it at a much younger age. And because children are getting exposed to it so young, they’re entering into the Tech Savvy Club much sooner than most of us have.

NPD, a research firm found that the average age of children using electronic devices has been lowered.  No surprise here. In 2005 the age was 8.1, and now in 2007 it has been lowered to 6.7.  In other words, six year old children are walking around with iPods, playing video games, and regularly using other technology devices.

NPD Analyst Anita Frazier says, “Kids are drawn to the latest and greatest digital just as their parents are.  They appear to have no fear of technology and adopt it easily and without fanfare, making these devices a part of their everyday lives.”

I couldn’t agree more! I love that kids have no fear of technology unlike many of the Baby Boomers I know who have no desire to embrace technology and adopt to it. They’re excited to use it, and they’re excited to learn about it.

For the study, they surveyed adults at least 25 years of age who had children in the ages ranging between 4 and 14. One explanation for the increase is that technology devices are everywhere and readily available. Another practical explanation is that the parents of these children were part of the first real generation of tech savvy individuals.

New Poll: At What Age were you Tech Savvy?

So with that, here’s our new poll: At what age were you tech savvy? This may depend on how you define tech savvy. Savvy defined is a practical understanding of something. I tend to think of a Tech Savvy individual as someone who understands, and is comfortable with multiple devices.

With that definition, I was Tech Savvy at around 18. At that point I had a Nokia cell phone, used a Compaq laptop regularly for school, and owned my first Compaq iPAQ Pocket PC. The iPod came several years later.

The answer to this question will likely depend largely on your generation. Someone born in the 40’s will have a much different answer than someone born in the 90’s.

You can vote in the left side-bar. Go on, go vote! :)

Source: Ars Technica

There Are 11 Comments

  1. I was about 3 when the first Atari came out (currently 18 right now) which i played so much. To this day the first thing anyone would say to describe my personality is my obsession with video games.

    I like to think that i was basically raised in the birth of home computers and video games, so I’ve sort of grown up with the games, never knowing a life without computers, but seeing the steps they have taken thus far since the beginning (although I’m sure a lot of people would argue that i was not born around the home computer explosion).

    This new generation of kids, being born in a time where computers and electronic devices are rampart and popular, is a intresting generation to me. How will they reacte to new things like that Surface stuff microsoft was talking about? Will they be as impressed as we are? Will they just think “It’s about time”?. I’m not sure, but i am super happy that everyone has beeing embracing tecnology lately.

    I remember for the longest time when i had to hide the fact that i played things like MMO’s (and just video games in generaly) from my friends in fear that i would be made fun of. Right around the release of the dreamcast and playstation 2 this all changed though, I’m still kind of confused, all of a sudden being a geek is cool.

  2. I’m sorry, Atari should be Nintendo, although i did own a Atari.

  3. I first got a Tandy TRS80 when I was 14. You had to program it in BASIC, which wasn’t that hard too.

    A few years later I got a PC with DOS and Windows 3.1. Then before I graduated high school Windows 95 came out.

  4. Daniel wrote:
    This new generation of kids, being born in a time where computers and electronic devices are rampart and popular, is a intresting generation to me. How will they reacte to new things like that Surface stuff microsoft was talking about? Will they be as impressed as we are? Will they just think “It’s about time”?.

    That’s a really good question that I haven’t ever thought about. One thing that’s for sure is that the technology is becoming so advanced that it will take a lot more work for the kids to keep up with it. For example, there are so many programming languages available compared to the 80′s and 90′s that it’s hard to decide what to use when designing something. What’s it going to be like 10 years from now?

  5. I was born (1979) and grew up in germany. My first device was a atari then nintendo, super nintendo etc.
    Now i live in Ohio since 2003. Last feburary i went back to germany on a vacation trip.
    Germans are always a step behind the US and two if not three behind the Japanese. I’d think the age the europeans start is higher then 6.7
    The Japanese probarly start like at 3 yrs old :lol:

  6. I voted in the 13-19 age group, however, it could have been earlier, like 11-12.

    Back then there really was not “real” technology for us to mess with in the arena of home computers, ipods, etc. I did get into radio with the multi band type and made modifications to get better signal strength, reception, etc.

    Later, I got a TI 99 computer, which you had to program each time, or you programed it and saved the program to a cassette on one of those “old” cassette recorder/players.

    I did also have the original home arcade “Pong”. It was in a box about the size of the Atari 2600 and only had Pong on it.

    Ok, I was born in 1963 and will be 44 in about 3 weeks. So the time that computers were coming out, I was in the Navy. I did get right into them and always had an ancillary duty in that realm.

    When I started though, there was no Internet as you know it today. I started getting files through ftp commands over command line access only.

    I did run my own Bulletin Board System(BBS) on my first home computer. That was a 386 SX??. It had 4 megs of memory, and 80 MB hard drive and ran Windows 3.1. I ran my BBS on it and had some games and applications, AND 50 Meg of zip files for the BBS! That was when programs were small and robust.

    I guess that is more than enough for this comment. I could go on forever!

  7. All of my friends’ kids are “tech savvy” but most of those kids actually don’t know a lot about technology. They are not afraid to use new devices but they have no idea about how those things actually work. They are basically clueless end users.I have become the unpaid tech support guy for many of these families with “tech savvy” kids.

  8. Very true Ted! I’d start charging if I were you :)

  9. Unfortunately that is something people are plagued with who have any sort of technical knowledge. It’s just as bad if you know something about cars. :)

  10. I was first introduced to computers (an Apple) in elementary school, around 1984-1985. I would not have considered myself “tech savvy” then but it was the start.

  11. My experience is similar to CoryC…I started with an Apple II back in the 1980′s…I only played games at that point (I was only 10 yrs. old), but it was a start.

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