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SquareTrade (www.squaretrade.com), which offers a protection plan for electronic gadgets, says that a new study has found that that more than 50% of American parents say their kids have damaged a mobile phone, laptop, tablet or other portable device, costing parents more than US$2.8 billion in repairs and replacements.
"Just like their parents, kids use devices for an increasing number of things – from games and videos to research and homework. Our research shows that this increased usage also means that devices are more at risk than ever before, and we expect this trend to continue," says Ty Shay, CMO of SquareTrade. "We believe it's important to educate parents about these accidents because 60% are not covered by a protection plan, making repairs and replacements expensive and time consuming."
More than 85% of American kids now have their own mobile device and they use it more than ever: parents say their kids use mobile devices for an average of 3.2 hours a day. The SquareTrade research also revealed the unexpected consequences of kids using mobile devices including unauthorized purchases, accidental calls, texts and photographs, and a surprising number of food and drink related accidents:
° Accidental calls & texts: 31% of parents say that their kids have called, texted, or messaged someone by accident on their parent's devices.
° Unapproved purchases: 28% of parents say that their kids have purchased something on the parent's mobile device without permission.
° Unintended photos: 9% of parents say that their kids have taken inappropriate photos with the parent's devices.
° Conflict: 36% of parents have bought an additional device in order to reduce conflict in their home
° Food & Drink: 33% of kid-caused accidents involved food or drink.
By the way, boys were 35% more likely than girls to have caused the accident.