86% of primary school children use a mobile device, report finds

The report also shows that children are starting to go online at a younger age

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Picture by Peter Byrne PA Archive/PA Images

A new report shows that 86% of primary school children in Ireland use a mobile device.

Irish firm Zeeko has put together its second School Digital Trend Report, with almost 4,500 primary school children having completed its questionnaire in late 2016.

The results show that 86% of children have access to a smart phone, tablet or iPod.

The findings also suggest that children are starting to use the internet at a younger age, with 1st class students on average having first gone online at 4.9 years old, compared to 7.6 years of age for 6th class students.

The report found that 34% of primary school children have more than two hours screen time per day during weekdays, which increases to 54% of children at weekends.

It also shows that more than 10% of children in most classes reported being cyberbullied.

77% of children who responded saying they see the issue of cyberbullying as 'serious' or 'very serious', while 58% said the same about talking to strangers online.

Joe Kenny, Zeeko founder and CEO said: “There is no doubt the internet is a hugely beneficial resource for young people and something they will use more than the current generation. Internet safety is all about education.

"Particularly for younger children it is important to raise their awareness of online risks to give them the protection and coping strategies which will help them become confident digital citizens," he added.