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Old Feb 13th, 2013, 09:57 AM   1
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mobile phones

Just out of curiosity :

1) how old were you when you first got a mobile phone?

2) how old do you think your child will be when you get them their first mobile phone?

3) WHY have you decided on that age (for question 2)?

I was 16 when I first got a mobile phone. I was allowed to go into town from the age of 12 on the bus with friends (and was going to different cities with friends on the train when I was 13, not miles away I mean like the next city, to go ice skating or whatever), but I would just use a phone box and ring my mam and tell her what time I was coming home. But that's because mobile phones weren't exactly commonplace when I was 12 or 13.

My mam did have a huge brick phone and I used to borrow it when I was 13 when I was babysitting for peoples kids, so I could phone her and ask her to pick me up when I finished babysitting.

I think I'll be getting phones for my kids from the age when I allow them to take the bus or train somewhere like I did when I was younger, maybe from about 12 or so, because relying on phone boxes in this day and age seems daft. But I'll not be allowing them to use one willy nilly to contact friends. I know all too well how quickly kids/teens use up their credit and/or run up humongous phone bills! There'll be limits on the phones, and they'll only be given them when they leave the house. Inside the house I see no need for a kid to have a mobile phone.

I also see no need for a kid to have a smart phone. All this "sexting" stuff that I keep hearing about is really worrying. I'd like to think my kids are more sensible than that, but really when it comes to peer pressure you just don't know really.

A basic no frills phone to call home if they are out (or for me to contact them) is all they need as far as I'm concerned. And only when they're old enough to need one.

So what about you guys? Is it something you've thought about?

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Old Feb 13th, 2013, 10:17 AM   2
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I was 25 when I got mine- yup! LOL. I'm also 39yrs old though- so they were not "all the rage" when I was a kid- unless your parents had a car phone! haha.

My SD got her's at 10yrs- ONLY because when she'd visit her bio-Mom, we couldn't trust her to allow her to call us (there were issues in the past because of this) and we wanted my SD to feel safe being there overnights again. She didn't have overnights for about 2yrs prior.

I would prob get my LO a cell phone when we feel she is old enough and mature enough to start being left at home alone for a short bit of time- as we don't have a land line. I figure any younger, and I'll know where she is, who she's with and how to get a hold of her- well, we still know all that with my SD and she's 15 now Cell phone or not- and now we have an app on her phone so we can see where she is and visa versa. Just in case.

btw- our oldest JUST got a smartphone- because my MIL got a new one and had a perfectly good iPhone 4 she didn't need. So we got it for free- and with my SD learning to drive, and going off on her own in about 4mos- we figured it would be good for her to have for directions and us tracking her buahaha. Until then, she just had a very basic decent phone- whatever was free or cheap.

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Old Feb 13th, 2013, 14:39 PM   3
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I'm snooping this section (I only have a toddler) However I have already thought about this!

I got my first phone when I was 12 too, for similar reasons to what you mentioned (sleepovers and going to different town etc) However I was given £10 top-up a month and if it ran out before the month was over, I was forced to go without. End of.

This will be the same for my daughter, when she is old enough for a phone (around 12 I'm hoping) she will get a no frills phone and given a limit per month to use.

if she wants a fancy smartphone with internet etc she will have to wait until she's 16 and has her own job to pay for it.

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Old Feb 13th, 2013, 16:22 PM   4
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I can't remember how old I was when I got my first phone - I'm going to guess around 18 as I don't remember having one until I was working.

As for my children. The earliest will be when they start secondary school. Before the they won't be going out on their own as such. They will obviously go to friends houses etc but I would arrange a time for collection before leaving them or else ask the parents if they can use their phone.
I don't see the need for a smart phone either at that age. Unless there just happens to be a good deal on one then we will just buy a bog standard phone.

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Old Feb 13th, 2013, 19:09 PM   5
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I think I was 17 when I got my first one to take to uni lol.

My daughter will be getting one pretty soon (she's 8) because she's shown she's mature enough for the responsibility I didnt have a set age, more when I think they'll appreciate the responsibilty but certainly wont be a fancy phone!

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Old Feb 13th, 2013, 23:42 PM   6
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I don't think I had a mobile phone until I was over 30. I still rarely give the number out to people because I forget it at home half the time and I'd hate for people to be under the impression that they could actually get ahold of me. Lol

My eldest is 12 and she won't be getting her own phone anytime soon. We have a prepaid that is the extra phone and she takes it with her if she is going somewhere on her own. She bikes to school and to some of her lessons and I want her to call me when she arrives. But she doesn't think of it as her phone. She can't call or text her friends with it.

I think this is an area where I am more old fashioned than most parents but in mind it is more important for her to have a watch and be where she is supposed to be when she is supposed to be there than it is for her to have a phone so I can get ahold of her no matter where she is, especially at her age.

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Old Feb 14th, 2013, 03:00 AM   7
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Serenity-I like the idea of a spare phone that anyone can use.
We always have old phones at home because OH and I both are on contracts. I think we might do this as the kids get older. And then once they've proved they aren't going to use all the credit texting etc then we will get them a phone of their own.
Thanks for the idea

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Old Feb 14th, 2013, 06:42 AM   8
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I was about 23 when i got my first, back in 1999 when the Phillips c12 was released. That was about the time that pay as you go was really taking off

My dd is 11 and she has been using a mobile regularly for at least a year and a half, before that she got to use an old one that we had lying about and had done for a long time. But yeah, all her freinds have phones now and they don't move up to secondary until august

I let her have her own phone because it was appropriate to do so at that time, she probably wasn't even 10 yet, but things are different now to how they were when I grew up. I think it's hard to say when your kids are very young what age you will allow them to do things at. I never would have imagined Leah having a mobile when she was 10, but that's just how things are nowadays, technology is everywhere and kids are using it more that adults. Plus every child is different, whatis right for one at a certain age won't always be right for others

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Old Feb 14th, 2013, 12:25 PM   9
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I was in my late twentys!! Now I don't know how I lived without it for so long!! My son is 14 and got his first phone at 10. That is because we got rid of our landline, so I needed him to be able to reach us if he got back from school before we did, or to call us when it is time to pick him up after practice or whatever.

I have 2 toddler girls now, and will probably let them have a phone about the same time if they are ever home alone or after school activities.

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Old Feb 15th, 2013, 17:26 PM   10
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I was about 19? when I got a cell phone. My parents actually pushed me for it - so if I got stuck anywhere driving, I could call.

My daughter got her first cell at 13. No data, but unlimited texts. I prefer a text to say what is going on then a phone call at work. She had a contract - and that became her allowance. if she went over - she had to pay the overages.
She is 16 now, and got a newer smart phone, still no data plan - but she could use it if she is willing to pay for it.
She walked to/from school and to/from practices - and I work - so it was nice to know what was going on.
Funny - she lost soo many things over the years, but not her phone...

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