Texting tops with US teens

Market tracker Nielsen Co. on Thursday released a study confirming what many US parents already knew: teens love to use mobile phones to swap text messages.

"If it seems like American teens are texting all the time, it's probably because on average they're sending or receiving 3,339 texts a month," Nielsen said in a release accompanying a study based on monthly mobile phone bills.

"That's more than six per every hour they're awake."

Nielsen analyzed data from more than 60,000 US mobile phone service subscribers in April, May, and June.

"No one texts more than teens," Nielsen said, pegging the top texting age bracket at 13 to 17 years old. "Especially teen females."

Girls sent or received an average of 4,050 text messages monthly, while boys averaged 2,539 texts, according to the study.

Mobile phone users ages 18 to 24 years old were a distant second place, typically exchanging 1,630 text messages monthly or a "meager" three texts per hour, Nielsen said.

The ability to exchange text messages has replaced safety as the top reason teenagers get mobile phones, according to the study.

The amount of voice calling done by US teenagers dropped 14 percent as compared with the same three-month period a year earlier, Nielsen reported.

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