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CDs, chocolate, and cigarettes dumped in favour of phones

Youths change their priority list

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The latest survey of how da youth uses mobile phones, due to be released soon, shows that European youngsters will get their first phone around the age of 8, and will sink $28,000 into the device during their lifetime.

Today's young people are spending eight times more on telephony than music. Up to 20 per cent of their disposable income goes on communications and associated services, leading to a rapid decline in sales of CDs, chocolate, and cigarettes - for better or worse.

Of course, one can attribute that decline to music piracy and effective public health information, but lead author of the report Graham Brown says it's clear that mobile telephony is emptying pockets and wallets: "In 2007 they [youth between five and 24] will spend over $150bn on their mobile. That's up from nothing 10 years ago."

The report goes on to identify the importance of maintaining a social experience when creating a new mobile service: "Mobile video keeps delivering the TV-watching experience, but TV is about much more than that and operators need to deliver the shared social experience that goes with TV as well as the service itself," Graham explained.

Few would argue that a generation of youth consuming fewer cigarettes and less chocolate isn't a good thing, as long as the mobile phones aren't melting their brains. ®

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