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Half of Generation Z Uses a Smartphone While Watching TV
A study of online viewing for young people in four countries shows that YouTube is nearly as popular at television, and short videos are the favorite.

Today's youth are constantly plugged in, finds Futuresource Consulting, which studied behavior for members of Generation Z (age 3 to 16) in the U.K., U.S., Germany, and China for a report on Kids Tech. Young people are multidevice consumers, using a smartphone half the time (49 percent) they watch TV. Also, 40 percent regularly use a tablet while watching TV. While most of those dual-screen users are playing games or chatting with friends, a quarter of them are streaming video from sites like YouTube. This distracted viewing shows a lack of engagement with or focus on content from any device, suggests Carl Hibbert, the associate director for media and entertainment for Futuresource.

The young are watching a lot of online video. Snackable videos of five minutes or less are the most popular. One-third of the kids studied use a mobile device to stream video every day. In the U.S., that number is 40 percent.

YouTube is almost as popular at TV for Generation Z: 80 percent of those studied regularly visit the site, while nearly one-third of that group watched 5 hours of YouTube video or more each week. Additionally, 65 percent of those age 13 to 16 regularly watch Facebook video, while 40 percent average over an hour of viewing time in each session.

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