Mobile phones for children: Alarm bells ring over kids’ phones

Mobile phones for children: a boon or a peril?

From The Times

June 23, 2009

Half of British children aged 5 to 9 own a mobile phone, and a brand for tots is imminent. Some experts are unhappy.


Informant: Martin Weatherall


Firefly mobile phone designed for four year-olds

By Urmee Khan, Digital and Media Correspondent

23 Jun 2009

A mobile phone called the Firefly which has been designed for children as young as four has caused alarm among parents.

More than 7,000 handsets have already been sold in Ireland and the phone is set to be launched in Britain before the end of the year.


From Mast Sanity/Mast Network


On sale soon: The mobile aimed at four-year-olds


Child mobile phone use costs them sleep

Alarm bells ring over kids’ phones


Firefly phone marketed specifically at 5 to 9 year olds

Obviously, in the light of official government advice that children up to the age of 16 should not use their phone except in emergency situations, and the personal opinions of leading scientists in the world on child usage of a phone (see below), this seems like a particularly irresponsible marketing decision. With the steadily increasing research showing a probable association with long term mobile phone usage and an increased risk in developing a typically fatal brain tumour, the idea of promoting any level of mobile phone use for young children is simply exploiting parents fears for their safety for the sake of extra profits. What makes it worse is the tragic irony that in giving the phone to their children, parents will feel they have made a positive choice with regards to their child's welfare, when the opposite may turn out to be the case.

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