Survey Finds 71% of North American Teens Have Free Reign Over Mobile Phone Usage
GAITHERSBURG, MD, Aug. 29, 2005 – Survey results released today from ACE*COMM Corporation (NASDAQ:ACEC) indicate most North American parents aren’t supervising the mobile phone use of their teenaged children. Seventy-one percent of teenagers surveyed admit they enjoy unrestricted use of their mobile phones. The online survey, conducted for ACE*COMM by Itracks, polled 1000 teens across North America between the ages of 13 and 18 from July 30 to August 9, 2005.
The Itracks survey also found that many teenagers are abusing their mobile phone privileges. More than one-third (38 percent) of teens surveyed use their mobile phones to text-message their friends during school, 30 percent play video games on their phones while in school, and more than one-quarter (26 percent) use their phones to talk to people their parents would not approve of. The survey also revealed that on average, teens spend almost as much time on their mobile phones as they spend doing physical activity.
ACE*COMM, a global provider of communications software solutions for telecom service providers and enterprises, is offering Parent Patrol to mobile service providers as a solution for parents concerned with their children’s mobile phone use. Parent Patrol enables parents to monitor and set limits on their child’s phone use by setting boundaries on numbers called, time of day, number of minutes used, and services accessed (for example, text messaging), all as part of their family service bundle. These restrictions can be applied once or dynamically changed over an easy-to-use Web interface. Always-allow and never-allow features enable exceptions, such as permitting calls to and from parents at all times, or barring unwanted callers. This manageability greatly limits the abuse of mobile phone privileges, while also ensuring that children of all ages – not just teens – always have access to their phone services for permitted activity and for emergency and security purposes.
“In a recent survey of tween parents, nearly two thirds said they had concerns about giving a mobile phone to their under-12 children,” said Iain Gillott, president of iGillottResearch, Inc., a market strategy consultancy focused on the wireless and mobile industry. “Many of those concerns can be addressed by enabling parents to control and monitor their child’s wireless usage. For the mobile operators to successfully market mobile services to kids, we believe that the parents will have to be involved in their child’s wireless experience.”
“While mobile handsets now being marketed directly to young kids do limit the numbers that can be called, you won’t catch a teenager carrying a Mickey Mouse phone,” says Chris Couch, Chief Marketing Officer for ACE*COMM. “Nor can these phones restrict the time of day when the phone is used. Parent Patrol can be used with regular phones and the limits are easy to modify so parents can loosen the rules during summer holidays, for example, and tighten them during exam times.”
According to the survey, teens are very attached to their mobile phones. Fully one half of those surveyed said they would rather have their TV privileges restricted than their mobile phone use, while more than a quarter (27 percent) indicated they would prefer to have Web access or use of iPods limited rather than have their mobile phones taken away.
Parent Patrol works for both parents and teens, because parents can place limits on phone service access that they feel is reasonable, yet teenagers are free to enjoy their phones within those limits. Parent Patrol for mobile service providers is currently available through ACE*COMM. Parents should contact their mobile service provider for more information.
About Parent Patrol
More and more, families are providing their children with mobile phones for safety and security. But many parents want to place limits on how those phones are used. Parent Patrol from ACE*COMM lets parents define limitations and restrictions on the mobile phones included in their family plan service bundle. For example, they can limit their child’s mobile usage to specific hours – such as between 8:00 AM and 8:00 PM. Or they can block text messaging (SMS) during school hours. In all cases they can program exceptions, such as calls to or from parents. Calls to emergency services are never blocked. Restrictions can be customized for each child on the plan, and changes are easy to make via password-protected Web pages. For additional information, contact ParentPatrol@acecomm.com.
ACE*COMM is a global provider of network business intelligence and advanced operations support systems (OSS) solutions for telecom service providers and enterprises. ACE*COMM’s solutions are applicable to a range of legacy through next-generation networks that include wired, wireless, voice, data, multimedia, and Internet communications networks. These solutions provide the analytical tools required to extract knowledge from operating networks – knowledge customers use for asset recovery and revenue assurance, cost reduction, improved operational efficiency, acceleration of time-to-market for new services, and more effective customer care.
For over 20 years, ACE*COMM technology has been effectively deployed for more than 300 customers, spanning over 4000 installations in 70 countries worldwide. ACE*COMM-installed products are currently enabling the success of customers and partners such as Alcatel, AT&T, Cisco, General Dynamics, IBM, Level 3 Communications, Marconi, Motorola, Northrop Grumman, Siemens, and Unisys. Headquartered in the Washington, DC area, ACE*COMM has corporate offices in Australia, Canada, China, and the UK. ACE*COMM is a registered ISO 9001 quality standard company. For more information, visit http://www.acecomm.com.
ACE*COMM, NetPlus, the ACE*COMM logo, and N*VISION are registered trademarks, and Convergent Mediation and Parent Patrol are trademarks of ACE*COMM Corporation.
Except for historical information, the matters discussed in this news release include forward-looking statements that are subject to certain risks and uncertainties that could cause the actual results to differ materially from those projected, including, but not limited to: the failure of anticipated demand to materialise, delays or cancellations of orders due to various factors, including business and economic conditions in the U.S. and foreign countries; industry-wide slowdowns, any limitations on customers’ financial resources, the continued convergence of voice and data networks, the continuing success of the Company’s strategic alliances for product development and marketing, customer purchasing and budgetary patterns or lack thereof; pricing pressures and the impact of competitive products; the timely development and acceptance of new products; the Company’s ability to adequately support its operations, and other risks detailed from time to time in the Company’s Report on Form 10-Q and other reports filed with the Securities Exchange Commission.