In Canada, 71 per cent of youth between the ages of 12 and 19 have a cellphone, according to new data compiled by Toronto-based Solutions Research Group. The penetration nears 80 per cent for this age bracket in Toronto and Vancouver, where cells are seen as an essential social tool as well as a matter of safety for parents, according to the research firm specializing in the youth market.
Solutions Research Group estimates that among nine- to 12-year-olds, one in four own cellphones. Also, their research shows 70 per cent of mothers with tweens share the cellphone with their kids occasionally for calls, texts or games.
Overall, there are 21.5 million Canadian wireless phone subscribers, representing a national wireless penetration rate of 67 per cent. And half of all phone connections in Canada are now wireless, according to the Canadian Wireless Telecommunications Association. A spokesman from that agency, Marc Choma, said these subscribers, including=20 parents of younger user s, need to look at all the evidence about the safety of cellphones rather than cherry-picking a few.