At What Age Should You Buy The First Smartphone For Your Child

As soon as smartphones appeared in adults, as soon as the Internet and all sorts of applications appeared on these gadgets, children’s hands immediately reached out to the achievements of technological progress: from plump infants to tenacious teenagers.

Does your child need a smartphone?

I can bet that your child in his two-and-a-half years already deftly manages with a smartphone. Moreover, the kid does not just poke his finger on the screen, but already consciously clicks on the desired icons. And of course, parents now face a rather difficult question – at what age should a child have a smartphone. I deliberately do not use the expression “mobile phone”. We are talking about a smartphone.

Time for change: a third-party opinion

Times change, and so do requests. Modern teenagers are increasingly immersed in the world of tablets, smartphones, and other gadgets. For example, according to Nielsen analysts, American teenagers between the ages of 12 and 17 are not yet a large, but fast-growing group of smartphone users: from 33% in 2011 to 58% in 2012. The analytical agency Piper Jaffray claims that approximately 48% of American users of teenage age are owners of “Apple” gadgets, and more than 21% of respondents preferred Android devices.

Security experts are relentless. In their opinion, children under the age of 11 should not even get a regular “dialer”. A phone with Internet access and a camera is an undesirable gadget for teenagers under the age of 13. Well, you should not buy a smartphone for your child until they reach 15-16 years old.

Nevertheless, manufacturing companies do not pay attention to harsh experts and actively promote the opinion that a child simply can not do without their products. For example, one manufacturer noted that its new laptop model fits perfectly on a child’s lap. And the waterproof and shockproof case of this gadget is simply created for absent-minded kids who are not particularly thrifty to new-fangled devices.

After all, on the one hand, a smartphone is not only entertaining internet surfing but also necessary knowledge in the modern world. Teenagers can even get essay writer service using a smartphone. The speed with which a child learns new technologies is very high. A first-grader can understand a smartphone much faster than the average adult with technical education. If you give children access to mobile devices, you can prepare them in advance for life in a world whose laws are determined by the development of these very technologies. Parents who do not allow children to contact gadgets risk depriving the child of the chance to quickly adapt to the world of IT.

On the other hand…

To buy your child a smartphone means to personally “untie his hands” and allow him not to study. Well, what teenager wants to pore over cosines and tangents when you can at any time pass the next level of your favorite game, text with friends, or find some interesting applications for your gadget.

Caring for a child or indulging in your own insecurities?

If you buy a phone for your child, then only the best (expensive, status, beautiful). Such an opinion is not uncommon in various forums (usually women’s), where parents try to use a social survey to decide what to give their child: a regular phone or a super-stylish smartphone. The argument in favor of expensive smartphones, because without a fancy gadget, the baby in the society of peers will look flawed. Parents buy the best, and, most often, at the expense of the family budget. The child is happy, everyone is happy. But what if you dig deeper? Dear parents, aren’t you struggling with your own insecurities? Aren’t you projecting your fears onto a teenager? A phone for a first-grader is a means of communication with relatives, nothing more. A gadget for a teenager of 10-15 years is surfing the Internet and virtual communication. The smartphone, whatever it is, should not become a means of self-affirmation. So why do you program deliberately false values in your child?

Another aspect that worries parents is a kind of “withdrawal from reality” and dependence on gadgets. It often becomes easier for a child to communicate with friends in the virtual world, it is easier for him to go once again on Twitter or Facebook than to go out into the yard and just say ” Hi!” to a peer. Parents turn to psychologists for help, or open the usual forum again and scribble: “My son/daughter does not need anything except a smartphone! What to do?!”.

The appearance of dependence on a smartphone often lies in parental inattention. Have you ever wondered how a teenager will behave if his mother, instead of simply paying attention to him, does not look up from her smartphone and sends messages every 10 minutes? How can a child adapt to society outside of his home if his father comes home from work, sits at the computer until late at night, and during the entire evening utters, at best, a couple of words? Children copy your behavior and project your model of the world on themselves. So before you buy your offspring an expensive gadget, think about whether you can cope with such a responsibility? Blaming others, modern technology, and the child itself is much easier than finding flaws in yourself.

You can’t wait to buy it

A new-fangled smartphone, according to psychologists, a schoolboy (6-15 years old) does not need it. In addition to surfing the Internet during school classes or passing the next level of a popular game, he will not do anything useful with a smartphone. A child, by the way, can lose an expensive gadget. In addition, a child’s smartphone can be stolen. Here’s another plus of the lack of an expensive device-a teenager will not become a target to a criminal.

For some reason, it is common for most parents to simplify the solution to problems. For example, the son said that it is a shame to appear in class without a smartphone. So why try to convince a child that they won’t look like a “sucker” without a fancy device? Why understand the reasons for the appearance of infantilism, insecurities, and herd feelings? Why try to help? After all, it is easier to write off everything on “child’s need for a smartphone” and solve the problem with money.

I believe that a regular mobile phone, with the function of receiving calls and sending SMS, is definitely necessary for a child at the age when you decide to let him go for a walk alone, without supervision.


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