Parents Say Text Messaging Kids Improves Communication: Study

Text messages sent to and from mobile phones will more than double over the next five years to 2.3 trillion messages by 2010, according to a Gartner survey. The overall growth in text messaging is driven by multiple factors - adults who use texting to "talk" while they're in meetings and parents who texting their kids. 

A survey commissioned by Cingular this summer found that among 1,175 parents, nearly 50% said their children introduced them to text messaging, and 63% said it had improved communication with their child.

"You know if you show up in person, you may get the cold shoulder," said Naomi Baron, a professor of linguistics at American University. "But you know that maybe if you communicate in their medium, you may get their attention."

According to a texting tutorial released by Cingular Wireless and clinical psychologist Ruth Peters last summer, text messages are a way "to arm yourself with information and simultaneously raise your esteem in your children's eyes."

Text Messaging Explodes:

  • Some 936 billion SMS (short message service) messages were transmitted in 2005, according to Gartner.  Total revenues from text messaging is forecast to grow to $72.5 billion in 2010 from $39.5 billion in 2005.
  • M:Metrics, a mobile market research company, found that nationwide, the fastest growing group of text messagers is adults. Between September 2005 and September 2006, the number of text-message users from age 45 to 64 grew about seven times as fast as among teenagers under 18, according to their data. 
  • Telephia, a consumer research firm, found that among Cingular users, women in their 40s are the fastest growing text message demographic and fourth largest group.

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