A majority of teens exchange texts daily with others, and half exchange texts daily specifically with their friends.
Fully 63% of all teens say they exchange text messages every day with people in their lives. Just 1% of teens say they text less than once a week, and 26% of respondents (including those without cell phones) said they do not text with other people at all.
When specifically asked about texting with friends, 49% of teens send and receive text messages with friends every day – while 28% of all teens say they never text friends.
Overall, the number of teens who text daily with friends has remained flat over the past two years. In 2009, 54% of all teens (regardless of whether they owned a cell phone) texted with friends daily. This is a statistically insignificant difference with the 49% of all teens who text with friends every day in 2011.
Teens are still sending large numbers of texts, and daily averages are moving upward.
The typical American teen is sending and receiving a greater number of texts than they were in 2009; and teens who text the largest number of messages are texting even more messages on a typical day than they did two years ago.
The median number of texts (i.e. the midpoint user in our sample) sent on a typical day by teens ages 12-17 rose from 50 in 2009 to 60 in 2011. Much of this increase occurred among older teens 14-17, who went from a median of 60 texts a day to a median of 100 two years later. Boys also had a slightly larger increase in the median number of texts sent or received each day moving from 30 texts to 50 texts on a typical day. Older girls remain the most enthusiastic texters, with a median of 100 texts a day in 2011, compared with 50 for boys the same age.
And while we see no growth in the median number of texts among white youth (flat at 50), black teens saw substantial increases, moving from a median of 60 to a median of 80 texts a day. Hispanic youth also send and receive very large numbers of texts with a median of 100 texts sent and received each day.