Teen text messages hit new high: 6 an hour, 3339 a month

The average American teen sends an average of six text messages for every hour he or she is awake, Nielsen says.

American teens send an average of six text messages for every hour they are awake, according to Nielsen.


That's the (somewhat stupendous) number of text messages the average American teen sends every month, according to Nielsen, which recently crunched data from 60,000 cell phone bills and surveys of 3,000 teens. We know what you're thinking: 3,339 text messages. How does that work out on an hour-by-hour basis? Well, luckily Nielsen has that data, too.

The tracking firm says that 3,339 texts a month adds up to more than six texts an hour for every hour that the teen in question is awake – a whopping 8 percent jump from the same time last year. Nielsen says that most prolific texters are teen females, aged 13 to 17, who send an average of 4,050 texts every month. By comparison, young adults – ages 18 to 24 – send only 1,630 texts a month, working out to three texts every hour.

As Ben Patterson notes over at Yahoo, the Nielsen survey comes on the heels of a report from the trade group CTIA, which shows that texts are up, while the length of mobile phone calls is down. Makes sense: Regular texters know that it's often easier to dash off a few lines on a QWERTY pad than it is to dial the digits, wait for a response – and then wrangle your way out of a long conversation.

"What's easier: Dialing your pal to say you'll be at the restaurant at 7 p.m. (and hoping your call won't be dropped), or just firing off a text that reads "CU @ 7"?" Patterson writes. "Granted, nothing beats a voice call for catching up or a heart-to-heart (well, besides the in-person thing), but when it comes to simple logistics, I'd rather just text."

Do you agree? Drop us a line in the comments.

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