Understanding what your kids do online header image

According to Ofcom, we are living in the age of the techie teen. A study by the organisation has revealed 14 and 15-year-olds are currently the most tech-savvy age group in the country, having grown up with the internet as a fundamental part of their lives.

Indeed, Ofcom found children as a whole are becoming increasingly skilled when it comes to the web and modern technology, mainly due to the fact they have never experienced what life was like without it. For example, the telecoms watchdog found six-year-olds typically have the same level of understanding of communications technology as 45-year-olds. 

It's clear then that kids know the internet inside out, and there's even a good chance your children known more about the web than you do. This isn't really an ideal situation, as failing to understand what your kids are doing online could have unwanted consequences.

For example, if you are on a usage-based broadband contract, your children could easily go over your data allowance and rack up an expensive bill that you'll have to foot. With this in mind, we've put together a guide to some of the most common things kids do on the web and the typical data costs of these activities.

Social media
Perhaps the single most popular online activity for kids is the use of social media. Be it Facebook, Twitter or Instagram, it has become the norm for children to connect with each other across these networks. Indeed, research released last year by global information services company Experian found roughly a quarter of the average time spent online by Brits is devoted to social networks. It would not be unreasonable to suggest this figure is even higher among under-18s. 

In terms of data usage, someone who regularly spends a large amount of time on social networks will consume somewhere between ten and 30 GB per month. Of course, if you have more than one child who loves social media the figure may well be twice as high.

Another things kids love to do online is stream. Whether it's watching YouTube videos or using services like Netflix and BBC iPlayer, many youngsters now see viewing video content online as the norm. The amount of data this consumes naturally varies depending on the length of the videos in question and the quality of the stream - HD requires more data - but regular streaming from one user normally needs between 20 to 50 GB in bandwidth.

As well as streaming, your kids may like to download films and TV shows. When done on a regular basis, this can use around 30GB to 100 GB of data each month.

Making the right choice
Now that you've got an idea of what it is your kids may be doing online, it's important to make sure you have a broadband package with the appropriate data allowance. Click here to take a look at our options and work out which one is right for you. If you've got any questions, don't hesitate to get in touch, as we'll be happy to help.