Wunderkinds: Ipsos Reid survey finds 75 per cent of Canadian children in
young families are Internet savvy before age seven

    
    New TELUS "Canadians and Technology" survey finds parents give the thumbs
    up to tech tykes and see the bonding benefits technology brings to
    Canadian families
    

TORONTO, Sept. 22 /CNW/ - According to a comprehensive new Ipsos Reid survey, 75 per cent of Canadian children in young families who use the Internet are proficient on it by the ripe old age of seven. Additionally, the majority of Canadian parents (69 per cent) think it's important for children to be technology-savvy from an early age.

The national Canadians and Technology survey, commissioned by TELUS, polled 4,466 respondents and found that more than half of parents with teens think the Internet encourages independent learning. In fact, 44 per cent of Dads believe limiting their children's use of technology will hold them back. According to the survey, 74 per cent of children are allowed to spend between one and five hours per week on the Internet; 59 per cent of teens agree that they cannot live without access to the Internet.

But the survey also illustrates that Canadians believe the Internet, mobile phones and television have a broader purpose: as an integral link connecting modern families, and bringing them closer together.

"Canadian families have moved from being groups to being social networks," said Dr. Barry Wellman, the S.D. Clark Professor of Sociology at the University of Toronto. "Each family member goes about their separate agendas, but links up at night and by new media throughout the day. Their lives have expanded beyond their homes and neighbourhoods, and at the same time, we're communicating more than ever."

The majority of Canadians believe a core value of technology is its ability to strengthen relationships: 83 per cent of respondents who strongly agree that technology helps keep their family organized, also say that the Internet has improved their connection with family and friends. Additionally, 57 per cent of Canadians agree that pre-recorded TV helps them stay close to family because it gives them the freedom to watch their favourite shows when they have time together.

When it comes to staying connected with one's immediate family, most Canadians say they use the phone (60 per cent) to do so, which is considerably higher than face-to-face communications (18 per cent). Eight in ten (82 per cent) parents say that one of the reasons their child has a mobile phone is so that they can stay in contact with their child when they're not around.

"Technology is having a dramatic impact on our daily lives," said Joe Natale, president, TELUS Consumer Solutions. "From the survey results, it's clear that networked families are using technology to improve their quality of life, staying better connected to each other and the world around them. Technology provides Canadian families with a sense of security, as well as easy access to a wealth of entertainment and information options delivered on the move with an immediacy unavailable to previous generations."

The Ipsos Reid survey also revealed that Canadians are using communications technology in different ways across the country. For example:

    
    -   Atlantic Canadians are especially savvy online and spend more time on
        instant messenger and social networking sites than any other Canadian
        region (10.5 hours per week).
    -   British Columbia residents are ranked the highest in number of hours
        they spend conducting research online (6.4 hours per week).
    -   Ontario students spend more time per week (3.2 hours per week) doing
        homework online than any other province.
    -   Quebec residents are most likely to use TV to relax (73%).
    

For more survey results, please see the attached backgrounder. For more information on TELUS, visit telus.com

For this survey, a national sample of 4466 individuals aged 13 and older from Ipsos' Canadian online panel was interviewed online. Weighting was then employed to balance demographics and ensure that the sample's composition reflects that of the adult population according to Census data and to provide results intended to approximate the sample universe.

About TELUS

TELUS (TSX: T, T.A; NYSE: TU) is a leading national telecommunications company in Canada, with $9.7 billion of annual revenue and 11.8 million customer connections including 6.3 million wireless subscribers, 4.1 million wireline network access lines and 1.2 million Internet subscribers and more than 100,000 TELUS TV customers. Led since 2000 by President and CEO, Darren Entwistle, TELUS provides a wide range of communications products and services including data, Internet protocol (IP), voice, entertainment and video. In support of our philosophy to give where we live, TELUS, our team members and retirees have contributed $137 million to charitable and not-for-profit organizations and volunteered more than 2.6 million hours of service to local communities since 2000. Nine TELUS Community Boards across Canada lead our local philanthropic initiatives. For more information about TELUS, please visit telus.com.

/NOTE TO PHOTO EDITORS: A photo accompanying this release is available at http://photos.newswire.ca. Images are free to accredited members of the media/

SOURCE TELUS Corporation

For further information: For further information: Megan Fielding, TELUS Media Relations, (416) 894-0817, megan.fielding@telus.com

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