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78% of families believe technology has brought them closer together, 'Future of Families' report reveals

Social media and increased real-time communication have made it more important to watch TV as it happens, bringing families together and sparking different conversations, according to a research report from OMD UK and Time Inc. UK which reveals the changing face of the British family.

The study of 4,000 Brits found that 68 per cent see watching television together as valued family time. Though technology triggers concerns for parents, such as sharing personal information (68 per cent) and privacy (67 per cent), more than three quarters (78 per cent) of respondents claimed technology is not disruptive in the home and has the power to bring families closer together.

“The increasing presence of mobile and tablet devices within the household and adoption of a ‘stack and snack’ approach to how we consume media and content, has actually brought families back into the living room together,” said Rian Shah, managing partner strategy, OMD UK.

Party-style games consoles and movies on-demand were said to have made it easier to find things for the whole family to do.

The ‘Future of Families’ report also found that for the majority of Britons the archetypal 2.4 family average is a thing of the past with the term ‘family’ becoming much more fluid with 19 per cent including friends, 36 per cent including in-laws and 29 per cent including pets as part of their family.

The cost of living was revealed as the foremost financial pressure for 68 per cent of families, while 31 per cent worry about not paying their rent or mortgage each month and 15 per cent about getting on the housing ladder.

Despite financial pressures, those surveyed claimed they had learnt to cope with increasing financial demands by using cost saving mechanisms, for example 60 per cent of mums surveyed had swapped product to save money (up from 47 per cent in 2009).

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