Ina Fried

Recent Posts by Ina Fried

Study Finds More Young Kids Can Work a Smartphone Than Tie Their Shoes

Mobilized loves studies, especially ones that validate our skills and make us feel better about our shortcomings.

That’s why this new one from AVG is especially close to our heart. As part of the company’s Digital Diaries research on children and technology, the security firm polled a couple of thousand mothers with kids from 2 years old to 5 years old in the U.S., Europe, Japan, Australia and New Zealand.

Among the findings was that more of the young kids could play with a smartphone app (19 percent) than could tie their shoes (9 percent). See, Mom, I’m not alone! Of course, Mobilized is no longer a kid and is still bad at shoe-tying.

Tech skills are outpacing life skills in other areas as well. For example, more of the kids can open a Web browser than swim on their own, and more can play computer games than ride a bike.

My favorite part, though, is the quote from AVG CEO J.R. Smith.

“Technology has changed what it means to be a parent raising children today-–these children are growing up in an environment that would be unrecognizable to their parents,” Smith said. “As our research shows, parents need to start educating kids about navigating the online world safely at an earlier age than they might otherwise have thought.”

I would have gone with “Holy crap! We need to get our kids outside more and make sure they can do more than play Angry Birds.” But that’s me.


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I think the NSA has a job to do and we need the NSA. But as (physicist) Robert Oppenheimer said, “When you see something that is technically sweet, you go ahead and do it and argue about what to do about it only after you’ve had your technical success. That is the way it was with the atomic bomb.”

— Phil Zimmerman, PGP inventor and Silent Circle co-founder, in an interview with Om Malik