In one of those press releases that surprises approximately no one, market research firm NPD claims that kids are being introduced to electronic devices earlier than ever before, and getting accustomed to them quicker.
Like I said, hardly surprising. I mean, we're introducing battery-powered devices to our kids earlier, which means they're familiar with them before they can even walk. There's a reason toddlers don't need us to start their Wiggles videos for them after a short while.
What is surprising is that some of the numbers related to usage are down. Fewer kids own or use electronic devices compared to similar surveys from 2005 and 2006, and close to a quarter of the households surveyed said they hadn't purchased any new electronic gadgetry in the past year. That said, ownership of media players, portable games and digital cameras specifically have increased considerably, with mobile phones and portable DVD players not far behind.
No child-development experts have been interviewed yet about this report, so we've yet to hear any alarmist comments about alienation, anti-social tendencies, etc. But it doesn't mean you shouldn't worry: parents with Net-savvy kids will probably soon be approached with printouts of the report justifying the need for an 80GB iPod.