Woburn, MA – June 3, 2021 – A new Kaspersky Safe Kids study has revealed the most popular topics children were interested in during 2020 - 2021. The research found that TikTok, YouTube, and WhatsApp were the most popular applications, with TikTok overtaking Instagram with almost double the level of popularity.
2020 turned out to be an unusual year for children. The pandemic changed many common life situations across the globe, including education, time with friends and family, recreation, and entertainment. Kaspersky analyzed anonymized data, including search queries, the most popular Android applications and website categories requested, in order to explore the ways the interests and needs of children have changed under the new conditions. The data was voluntarily provided by Kaspersky Safe Kids users.
The most popular website categories among children were “software, audio, video” (44.38%), “internet communication media” (22.08%) and “computer games” (13.67%). Among the most popular apps, YouTube leads by a wide margin – the service remains the most popular video streaming service among children around the world. In second place is the messenger WhatsApp, and third is the popular social network TikTok. The top 10 also includes four games: Brawl Stars, Roblox, Among US and Minecraft.
Children are very active in listening to and watching music videos on YouTube – its share is 17.35% in searches for music genres and videos. A number of “trend” videos were also visible in the statistics – “pop it and simple dimple” and “ASMR” account for 4.43% of the queries. This year, requests related to the video game maker Gacha Life also stood out in the top ratings of children from all over the world with a share of 4 percent.
When it comes to music tastes, alongside traditional leaders like K-POP bands BTS and BLACKPINK, singers Ariana Grande, Billie Eilish and Travis Scott, another musical genre, called “phonk” became popular. There is also a trend towards “creative” videos; more and more requests for beats, samples and lessons on creating music in various programs began to appear at the top of the list. At the same time, TikTok remains the main musical trendsetter for children.
Cartoons account for half (50.21%) of all video searches by children around the world. The most popular ones are “Lady Bug and Super Cat,” “Gravity Falls” and “Peppa Pig.” In second place were various TV shows – the most frequent search in English was “The Voice Kids.” In movies and TV series, the most popular trailers were “Godzilla vs Kong,” Zach Snyder's recent “Justice League” movie and the Disney+ mini-series “WandaVision.” Netflix also continues to attract the attention of more kids – the most frequent requests via the platform were for “Cobra Kai” and the now iconic “Stranger Things.”
TikTok remains the undisputed leader among children, but at the same time, the perception of the social network has begun to transform. Now it is no longer only a social network for clips and lip syncs, as more educational and creative content has begun to appear on the platform.
For video games, those trending the most with children include “Minecraft” (22.84%), “Fortnite” (6.73%), “Among Us” (3.80%), “Brawl Stars” (6.34%) – which recently captured the attention of children and became very popular – and the much-loved “Roblox game (3.82%). At the same time, the most frequently played game in the top 10 for almost all countries is Roblox. Of all the regions, it was children from Kazakhstan who became leaders in visiting sites devoted to computer games, at 26.01%. In second place were children from the UK (19.40%). It was a very different picture in India, where children hardly ever visited sites dedicated to video games from a PC (just 5.08%).
“Modern children grow up with gadgets in their hands from a very young age, so they adapt to the digital space and master new technologies much faster,” said Anna Larkina, web content analysis expert at Kaspersky. “We see how TikTok has become one of the main trendsetters among children in a short time and continues to keep their attention. At the same time, YouTube hasn’t lost ground and remains the leader in popularity among children, in part due to the huge variety of videos, ranging from ‘let-plays,’ documenting the playthrough of a video game, to educational lectures and clips. Understanding and analyzing the interests of children on the internet helps us to pay attention to the issue of safety. By knowing what kind of music, a child listens to, who their favorite bloggers are or what games they play, parents can strengthen their trusted relations with kids. For instance, they could film a TikTok video together. This will also let parents help their kids to protect themselves from potential hazards online.”
To ensure children have a positive and safe online experience, Kaspersky recommends that parents:
Kaspersky is a global cybersecurity and digital privacy company founded in 1997. Kaspersky’s deep threat intelligence and security expertise is constantly transforming into innovative security solutions and services to protect businesses, critical infrastructure, governments and consumers around the globe. The company’s comprehensive security portfolio includes leading endpoint protection and a number of specialized security solutions and services to fight sophisticated and evolving digital threats. Over 400 million users are protected by Kaspersky technologies and we help 240,000 corporate clients protect what matters most to them. Learn more at usa.kaspersky.com.
Sawyer Van Horn