harris-daily-internet-use-by-age-dec10.gifA high percentage of US youth ages 8-24 uses social networking sites, according to [pdf] a new study from Harris Interactive.

Youth Favor SocNets, Facebook

Results from “YouthPulse 2010″ indicate three-quarters of 8-to-24-year-olds use a social networking site and about two-thirds (68%) spend time on a social networking site daily. Facebook is the most popular social networking site in this demographic, with 86% of 18-to-24-year-olds using Facebook and 71% of 13-to-17-year-olds doing so. More than one-quarter of 8-to-12-year-olds (28%) use Facebook, as well.

Most Youth Online 1+ Hours Per Day

Study results also show that eight in 10 8-to-12-year-olds (79%) and nine in 10 13-to-24-year-olds (88% of 13-to-17-year-olds, 90% of 18-to-24-year-olds) spend an hour or more online on a typical day.

Not surprisingly, the average number of hours spent online daily increases with age, rising from 1.9 hours among 8-to-12-year-olds to 3.5 hours among 13-to-17-year-olds, topping at 4.5 hours among 18-to-24-year-olds.

Online Music, Video Also Popular

Looking at other popular youth online activities, 70% of 13-to-17-year-olds and 18-to-24-year-olds listen to music online, while 64% of 13-to-17-year-olds and 66% of 18-to-24-year-olds watch online video.

Among 8-to-12-year-olds, 53% watch online video. However, this demographic has the largest contingent playing online games (78%, compared to 52% of 13-to-17-year-olds and 46% of 18-to-24-year-olds). Game playing is the top online activity among 8-to-12-year-olds.

Young Adults Use Cell Phones

Overall, 70% of 8-to-24-year-olds own a cell phone or smartphone, with smartphones representing 18% of this figure. During the past few years, cell and smartphone ownership has risen among tweens (26% in 2007 to 34% in 2010) and teens (65% in 2007 to 76%), but remained consistently around 90% among young adults in that timeframe.

Edison Research: Facebook Top SocNet For Youth

A substantial majority of US young adults age 12-24 use Facebook, according to a recent study from Edison Research.

“Radio’s Future II: The 2010 American Youth Study” indicates that 74% of young adults use Facebook to some degree. By frequency of use, this figure breaks down to 55% actively using Facebook and 19% occasionally using it. Of the remaining 26%, only 4% are unfamiliar with Facebook.

In comparison, only 30% of young adults use MySpace, with 12% actively using it. Much higher percentages of young adults have a MySpace account but don’t use it and have deleted a MySpace account than fit these two categories for Facebook use. Unfamiliarity is also twice as high (8%).

Twitter only has a 4% active use rate and 8% occasional use rate among young adults. However, 61% have heard of Twitter but never used it, presenting significant potential for audience growth.

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