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When is a good time for my child’s first smartphone? 


16 April 2024

Your child has been asking for a phone. The first classmates or an older sibling already have one. What can you do as a parent and when is the right moment to grant your kid their first phone? It’s a question every parent is faced with at one point. 

Age first smartphone 

There is no fixed age at which children get a smartphone. As a parent, you can determine this yourself. Most children in the Netherlands get their first mobile phone around the age of 9 to 11 years. That’s often around fourth to fifth grade. The advantage of kids at this age, is that they are still open to your advice, meaning that you can help them on their way before they reach the age at which they want to do everything completely independently (if you get it right 😉) 

Did you know that 34% of children receive their first phone for their birthday

Later age better? 

You can see how there is an increasing global awareness of how mobile phones are not only useful and fun for your child but pose potential risks to their mental health. Read more about this in the Parent Platform and know exactly what to look out for at home and what to install. 

In the meantime, we also observe a movement in the rest of the world (USA, UK) towards granting children smartphones at a later age, around 14. The idea is; now that we know the impact, we should make better choices for our kids. And by collectively doing so, we eliminate the social pressure to want a phone (the main reason that kids want a phone is not to be reachable for you, but to be able to participate in the online world). 

Outsmart your phone 

When your child eventually gets their first phone, it is necessary to have a conversation about its use and set mutual agreements. But not only in the start – do always stay in conversation. Just as you would ask about their day at school, it’s important to show your interest and stay involved with the online world of your child. We made an 8-step guide for you which you can follow so you know what your child wants, stay up to date, can install everything properly and are prepared to discuss what to do in certain situations. Don’t just drop your child into the digital deep – be smart online! 


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