The word addiction is perhaps common to human race however app addiction is more common among teens. With gaming consoles like Xbox, play station and Wii etc we have around 91% (statistics from Oct 2011) of kids between age group 2 – 17 years playing video games according to NDP research group. The new age group causing much traction is between 2-5 and teens between 15-17 ages.
The first big change in the form of free Android and iPhone games has come due to increase in mobile phones, tablets, iPad, iPhone and low budget cell phones. About 51% of kids today are playing mobile games on the go during spare moments or if one should say whenever they can squeeze the time to play these addictive games. The free cell phone games like Candy Crush, Flappy Bird (Pulled down), Angry Bird and Clash of Clans have been among the top ten free downloaded apps on Google Play and iTunes. In fact the mobile gaming app industry is relevantly huge with more than 80% of top paid and free apps are games only!
The generations Z born around 1990s are the first digital natives of mankind and they are the first to adapt to early technology. The school children, kids and teens brought word of mouth popularity to Flappy Bird and made it one of the top ten free apps of 2014. The addictive nature of the app made it impossible for kids to put it down and they still continue to play the game. The Flappy Bird app gone viral and its success led some to speculate and to which app developer Mr. Nguyen admits that Flappy Bird was quite addictive!
He felt right to pull back the app on both Google Play and iTunes calling it an addictive app and due to the excessive hype which disrupted his simple living. Here is something to teach from that that a developer who was making enough money from his creative creation thought it right to kill the app because people need to do more creative things and also lead simple lives minus of their addictions. He admits to still develop apps only with more confidence after Flappy Bird success and also remains to be an independent person pursuing this coding interest.
The second aspect is the game industry is forever changing and it is forever in demand by young adults. We have seen one or other kind of addiction like drugs, gambling, porn or eating disorders however any obsession make us blind. Either it is gaming addiction, texting addiction or any other it needs to be controlled. Today most families and children are juggling four screens in the form of TV, console, mobile and tablets/iPad. Kids and elders alike will continue to play addictive games as these can fill in boredom, can be played with one hand, make one feel good and some of them are social ( can be played online with friends) too. From all the gaming, there is also a need to take breaks and to enjoy one’s surroundings.
There are other apps as well in the market with a more educative aspect to them. Few of them are like Teen Ink (for age 13-17) who wants to write, Coding cargo-bot those who want to code programming language (for age 7-12) and other virtual, stories and word games. The most essential mix is allowing kids to play some of these less educational apps together (like Flappy Bird cheats) with the other apps that children get engaged in an active, interactive and meaningful environment. As a parent you must not forget that kids often even hide what they apps they have downloaded and other apps like Snapchat. In an environment where kids can easily botch, it is best to monitor their cell phone activities with a smartphone monitoring software like Mobile Spy that can record and log user cell phone activity.
Author Bio: Danny Ruthe is senior writer at Retina-X Studios. In his spare time he is scanning the Internet for top stories and parental tools necessary in this age and time. He is a passionate writer, a parent of two lovely teens himself and resides in Florida.