Children’s screen time now averages of more than six hours each day, a new report suggests.

According to the market research firm Childwise, children aged between five and 16 years of age have an average of six and a half hours a per day compared with around three hours in 1995.

The Connected Kids report analyses data from 1995 to the present day in order to better understand children’s media habits. Around 2,000 children are surveyed each year.

Screen time includes time spent watching TV or playing on a games console, or using a mobile, tablet or a computer.

While eight-year-old girls were found to spend the least time in front of a screen – three-and-a-half hours, teenaged boys are the lengthiest users, with an average of eight hours.

Screen time for five to 10-year-olds has risen from around two-and-a-half-hours in 1995 to four-and-a-half hours in 2014.

Children are now also more likely to multi-screen, which means they are using more than one device at the same time, for example, watching TV while playing a game on a tablet.

Research executive, Matthew Nevard, said, “The main difference from the 1990s is that then TV and magazines were the main ways for connecting kids to the media and now they have different devices from tablets, mobiles, games consoles and they have a much higher screen time.

“The internet is pivotal to their lives and they are now able to access a wealth of content.”

The report also suggests that in the next 10 years, children will come to regard household objects that communicate via the internet as normal.

“Having appliances which cannot be controlled using a smartphone or some kind of online dashboard may be seen as outdated, or at least increasingly rare,” the report concludes.

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