Washington: A new survey suggests that kids nowadays play with touchscreens more than toys.
Given the wealth of free and inexpensive kids apps available on mobile devices, it`s only natural that today`s toddlers are growing up with touchscreens.
Media research firm The Michael Cohen Group (MCG) released the results of its recent nationwide survey, which polled 350 parents about the play habits of their children 12 and younger.
Touchscreen devices got the most overall playtime according to the poll, with more than 60 percent of parents claiming that their child uses a touchscreen "often" and roughly 38 percent claiming "very often."
Touchscreens beat out kids toys that have been around for decades, such as dolls and action figures, arts and crafts, and construction-based toys, all of which had a roughly 50 percent usage rate on the poll.
Gaming consoles had a usage rate of a bit less than 50 percent, with other children`s staples such as vehicles, puzzles, and board games landing closer to 40 percent.
Given these stats, is it safe to call a touchscreen a toy? The MCG poll reveals that 10 percent of parents "always" consider touch devices as playthings, while 58 percent considered them "sometimes" toys.
The remaining 32 percent claimed that mobile devices should never be put in the same category as physical play products.
When it comes to content, 53 percent of parents claimed their kids played educational games. Half of parents noted that their little ones veered toward music-based apps, while 49 percent reported "free play" games with no discrete educational value.