• Online gaming on the rise – 40% of total internet usage is now online gaming
• Facebook usage declines
• YouTube viewing remains top of the list
• 13 Irish counties have daily online time above the national average
With Safer Internet Day coming up on 5th February 2019, iKydz, a leader in parental internet control solutions, has released its annual Internet Usage Index (IUI). The iKydz IUI provides information on actual patterns for Internet usage on the iKydz platform. 2018 has seen a sharp increase in online gaming, taking up 40% of overall online activity. A whopping 21% of this online time was spent on the incredibly addictive Fortnite. YouTube remains a popular platform for children, with the amount of viewing time taking up 22% of their average daily allowance. Interestingly, Facebook’s usage has dropped from 21% to just 5%, suggesting that the social media’s popularity has waned amongst younger people and indeed that greater restrictions have been applied by parents to social media.
The positive for iKydz users is that actual online activity has decreased from an average of 5.5 hours per day to an average of 4.6 hours per day. This is still a lot of time spent online, but the year-on-year reduction shows that parents are becoming more aware of the issue and are applying boundaries and rules to limit the exposure for their kids.
According to a recent study by the UK media watchdog Ofcom, 44% of parents with children aged between 12 and 15 struggled to control their kids’ screen time. Among this age group, 71% of those who had a mobile phone and 61% of tablet-owners were allowed to take the devices to bed. Official guidance suggests that children should not go online within an hour of bedtime.
John Molloy, Founder of iKydz, says “Parents are increasingly aware of the risks associated with overexposure to online activity. The challenge for parents is how do they monitor and apply controls to their kids’ devices easily? With so many connected devices available in the home today and so many complex and varied technical controls to be applied to each individual device, there does not appear to be an easy-to-use, one-size fits all solution to make parenting online easier. That is why iKydz has been developed.”
How can iKydz help?
iKydz offers Total Internet Control for parents both on WIFI and now on Mobile using its Android solution. Using just one app on their phone, parents can manage all internet devices that use WIFI in the home and block, restrict or schedule access to social media, inappropriate content, chat rooms and online gaming.
By using iKydz as a tool to help monitor and control internet access, parents can expect to see a number of positive improvements including:
• An improvement in school work as iKydz allows parents to easily set study and sleep schedules for each child individually
• Meal time function – bring conversation back to the dinner table by disabling phone internet access during this time!
• An overall decrease in children’s screen time meaning better sleep, improved academic performance and an overall improvement in physical, social and behavioral wellbeing.